Nebraska 32
Kansas 0

Oct. 11, 1941 • Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, Neb.

Efficient Huskers Whip Kansas, 32-0


It was that pet reverse again ... which sent Zikmund scampering 27 yards ... for the third Nebraska touchdown against Kansas. JOHN SAVAGE/THE WORLD-HERALD


Seem More Impressive than in 53-to-2 Victory at K.U. Last Year

Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, Neb., Oct. 11 – On this somewhat overheated bright afternoon 29 thousand watched 35 Cornhuskers efficiently and sometimes brilliantly compound running and plunging and passing off the T and single wing to produce 32 points while the Jayhawkers’ utterly vain aerial bombing sometimes boomeranged.

On a similar Saturday a year ago, some 20 thousand watched the Cornhuskers boom their way to a smothering total of 53 on the Jayhawkers’ play yard. While this went on the Jayhawkers managed to accumulate a measly two.

Yet to the appraising eye the Nebraskans went about the business of getting themselves the 32 points much more impressively than they went about getting the 53.

Let’s Wait and See

But you can’t be sure, for here the important matter of relativity intrudes itself. Are this year’s Jayhawkers as good, better or more anemic than the flock that suffered such disaster last term?

A hasty poll of the press box produced nothing conclusive, although fairly marked seemed the tendency to await the meetings with Indiana and Missouri before giving the Huskers a definite rating.

Up to now you can only say they look good. They look promising. Thirty-five of them looked promising against the sweating, winded kids from the Kaw valley, and more might have, had Big Six limitations not put a brake on Biff’s substituting.

With nine minutes and 40 seconds remaining the Major chased the last of a foursome of fourth-stringers onto the field to fill his quota. The fact that two third-stringers were ailing gave that many fourth-stringers their chance.

And they made the most of it, as did the No. 3 battalion which scored the fifth touchdown three plays after it had got hold of the ball on a punt on the Kansas 41, and the No. 2 battalion which shared evenly with the No. 1 the honor of making the other four crossings.

All the three and four-elevenths combinations shifted nimbly and swiftly from the T to the single wing much oftener than they sent a flanker scooting wide or essayed the quick thrusts that are the T power plays. But they demonstrated a pretty encouraging working knowledge of the stuff that Stanford used to outscore them in the Rose Bowl. Against the undermanned Kansas they did.

The Huskers starters scored six plays after they got their hands on the ball. Dale Bradley did about as spectacular a job of getting and doing as you’ll ever see.

Ray Niblo touched Ralph Miller’s pass just enough to bounce it into Dale’s eager hands. Before Niblo could do anything about ending his misfortune then and there, Bradley had streaked past him toward the KU goal. He kept streaking for 59 yards. When three Jayhawkers yanked him down from behind there were only 17 more to go.

Dale and the Viscount Francis spelled each other six times. On the sixth, Count rammed over left guard for the last yard. Five and a half minutes of the game were gone. The Count missed the kick and it was 6 to 0.

Wild Runs, No Score

It was 6 to 0 when the quarter ended, despite some of the wildest running you’ll ever behold. Allen Zikmund scooted and dodged 20 yards, then slipped with none of the enemy ahead of him. Once again Miller pitched much against his will to the pesky Bradley, and Bradley, aided by some deadly open-field blocking sprinted 50 yards across the goal – and the officials pronounced all null and void and inflicted a double penalty.

When the teams changed goals, Biff ordered in his No. 2’s and from their own 25 the No. 2’s began to move up field at blitz tempo.

Simmons Gallops

On his first play of the season, Ken Simmons gobbled up 41 yards on a reverse that shot him down the sidelines past every boy in blue but Ray Evans, who is Gwinn Henry’s top defensive back.

Ray stopped Kenny’s flight on the KU 34.

From there Wayne Blue blasted straight ahead and Howard DeBus outblasted Wayne Blue. Between them they advanced their destructive operations to the seven.

Then unaccountably the Huskers changed their methods. They tried end runs. These were expensive. They lost possession on downs two yards out.

But almost immediately they were goal-bound again, and, after a combination of Blue’s and DeBus’ hammering and Simmons’ running with DeBus’ passing had carried the attack 33 yards to the Kansans’ seven, Biff shooed back his starters.

Bradley picked up a yard for a first down on the six and then Marv Athey scored on one of the most violently perpetrated quarterback sneaks on record.

Jayhawks bounced through the air as Athey boomed into the end zone.

This time Francis’ kick made the total 13, until Zikmund two plays after the kickoff zipped 27 yards around right end on a reverse to make it 19 and Francis’ placement upped it to 20.

Don Pollom’s second down punt was run back 18 yards to the 27 by Bradley to set up the scoring maneuver.

Most of the Husker positions were manned by second teamers.

That ended the counting until the fourth period. Throughout the third the first and second Husker lineups were aggressive. Sometimes they threatened. Kansas never did throughout.

All Kansas had was Ralph miller’s fine throwing arm. Kansas lacked receivers fast enough to make it profitable.

Kansas had no running attack. The figures say that Kansas’ gains from scrimmage were zero – or six less than zero if you do not include a gain on a lateral pass.

Kansas’ first downs were mostly made on passes completed in Kansas territory.

Thirds Are Fastest

Blue got his touchdown four and three-quarters minutes after the last quarter began. He got it as he got three against Kansas last year – by plunging – this time for two yards. It ended a 75-yard drive which included a 26-yard charge by DeBus on a double reverse. DeBus’ kick was wide and the reckoning was 26.

That’s when Biff sent in his third-stringers, most of whom were debutants. The third-stringers were the fastest operators of the lot. Three plays after Bobby Cooper purposefully fumbled Niblo’s punt out of bounds on the KU 41, Cooper did a quarterback sneak for the needed one foot.

And Cooper had a big hand in the business of putting the ball there. From the 41, Blair’s Roy Long broke through the left side and raced 14 yards. Then he tossed a lateral to Bobby and Bobby wasn’t stopped until he reached the six.

Almost Another

Then Blue, the only No. 2 hand in the lineup, rammed to the one-foot line. Blue’s wide placement kept the score at 32 and there it stayed because the combination of third and fourth elevens didn’t have enough time to cap their assault with six more points.

Runs by Wilmer Hanson and plunges by Randall Salisbury after Center Forrest Bachman had run 25 yards to the 27 with an intercepted pass were a foot short when the gun demanded cessation.

More coverage

World-Herald post-game coverage (PDF)


Series history

Nebraska is 91-23 all-time against Kansas.

See all games »


1941 season (4-5)

Iowa State Oct. 4
Kansas Oct. 11
Indiana Oct. 18
Missouri Oct. 25
Kansas State Nov. 1
Minnesota Nov. 8
Pittsburgh Nov. 15
Iowa Nov. 22
Oklahoma Nov. 29

This day in history

Nebraska has played 17 games on Oct. 11. See them all »

©2018 BH Media Group