Iowa 21
Nebraska 7

Oct. 12, 1946

Iowa Surge Wilts Cornhuskers, 21-7

Here's the close-up view of the Nebraska touchdown. Tom Novak (arrow) smashes for the score. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Hawks Capitalize on Scarlet Bobbles; Novak Knifes for U.N. Tally

Iowa City, Ia. — Coach Eddie Anderson’s Iowa team was good enough when the crises arrived here Saturday afternoon, and took a 21-7 decision from Nebraska before 30,500.

The Husker attack was good and bad by turns, and a little tough luck for Nebraska sent the Hawkeyes in for a mid-game breather with a 14-7 lead.

Bobbles which slithered from Bill Moomey’s hands set up two of the Hawk counters.

A little incident which would cause any coach to snatch himself bald setup Iowa’s winning margin.

In the second quarter Moomey fumbled. The ball had eyes only for quarterback Louis King, the Iowa field general from Springfield, Mass. It popped straight up, out and into King’s arms and he ran 17 yards to a touchdown, Iowa’s second.

That gave Iowa a lead never relinquished. First half play was such that the Huskers could have owned a lead at the half without outraging reason.

There were enough fumbles to go around, and Nebraska made the most of the first quarter errors. Bartells lost the ball on his own 29-yard line early in the game.

Jack Hazen took possession and the attack clicked for Tom Novak’s touchdown and a 7-0 lead.

It wasn’t hard to get, either. Dick Hutton made nine on a lateral and Novak rammed to the 18. Hutton added five, Novak, a brisk line bucker in any league, went six yards smack through the center for a first down on the Iowa seven.

Novak needed three tries to score. But that was because a backfield-in-motion penalty made the route five yards longer.

The way Novak was operating, he likely would have gone right through a brick wall if necessary. Sam Vacanti kicked the point.

Iowa made two touchdowns in the second period. The first was built on a foundation of a wek Nebraska punt. It went out of bounds 32 yards from the payoff stripe.

Tunnell got by Jack Hazen and the linebackers for nine yards. Headington, who played most of the game at fullback, took a pass for first down on the 18, then ran seven. After a pass attempt, Emlen Tunnell plowed 11 yards through the line to score.

Sullivan, kicking the first of three placements, made the point and it was 7-7.

Then followed the unfortunate affair resulting in the second Iowa marker. It came on the first play after Iowa kicked off.

Shortly after that King fumbled and Francis Leik recovered for Nebraska. The ball was 37 yards from the Iowa goal. Jimmy Myers remedied that with a dazzling run of 34 yards.

This was it. The huskers needed a touchdown. But the offense spluttered. Excessive timeout cost five yards. Then Pat Rooney lost a yard on a play that looked like the turning point. He appeared to slip a trifle as he tried to cut into the line.

That split second delay hurt plenty, as Rooney was slowed just enough to become fair prey to a swarm of tacklers.

Vacanti tried a pass into the corner to Myers. It was gathered in by Headington of the enemy and the Husker threat died.

Another Moomey fumble opened the gate for the Hawkeyes in the fourth period. The recovery by King not only added to that man’s game laurels but gave Iowa the ball 38 yards out.

King is no quarterback to fritter away opportunity. He sent Curran on two plays for seven yards, then passed to Harold Shoener to spot the ball on Nebraska’s 23.

Sullivan gained four and Curran 10, and the ball was on the Husker 11. He tried twice more and on the second one he derived some beautiful blocking to cross the goal standing up. The point of attack was the left side of Nebraska’s defense.

Center Joe Partington had one chance to break loose and tally for the Huskers. But he is a center and can’t gallop like a back. The play was deep in Nebraska’s territory with Iowa only 14-7 ahead in the fourth period.

Partington intercepted a Sullivan pass as Iowa was crowding for a score. The scrimmage line was the Husker 10. Partington carried out to the 37 but on the next play Moomey fumbled and Iowa proceeded to clinch the contest.

Iowa failed to show its second half surge, the kind which scared Michigan last week. Nebraska’s play was generally good but lack of strength behind the starting center and fullback was crippling, and no doubt played a major share in keeping the Huskers from mounting a full-scale attack.

Dick Hoerner, not expected to play, was rushed in when the Huskers began to get out of hand. His recovery from an alleged back injury was apparently hastened by the sunshine and cool weather.

Hoerner, Tunnell, King and Smith usually stick together. In Hoerner’s temporary absence, coach Anderson started a complete new backfield.

The game apparently marks the end of the long Iowa-Nebraska series started in 1891.

Partington played the entire game at center for Nebraska, and Novak drew only about five minutes rest from fullbacking.

The game may cost the Huskers the services of halfback Cletus Fischer. He had a bad right knee after the game. Gene Wilkins came up with a back injury and Hazen an ankle injury.

Curan of Iowa was carried off the field with a back injury.


More coverage

World-Herald post-game coverage (PDF)

Series history

Nebraska is 29-18 all-time against Iowa.

See all games »

1946 season (3-6)

Minnesota Sept. 28
Kansas State Oct. 5
Iowa Oct. 12
Kansas Oct. 19
Indiana Oct. 26
Missouri Nov. 2
Iowa State Nov. 16
Oklahoma Nov. 23
UCLA Nov. 30

This day in history

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