LINCOLN — Nebraska Saturday cleared the decks for a Big Seven championship showdown at Oklahoma next week by turning back a stout-hearted Iowa State team, 20-13.
The victory sends the Cornhuskers into the Sooner battle a half game behind in the league race. They can share the crown by winning.
A crowd of more than 36 thousand cheered the finish of a first home season clear of defeat since the 1940 Rose Bowl year.
Only a few — possibly none — in the huge throng suspected last September they would be converging on Memorial Stadium to watch a Nebraska team which in late November would have lost only one game.
Although the score would indicate a tight battle, the Cornhuskers were in command throughout.
The Scarlet got a first-quarter touchdown, added another in the third period and racked up the clincher in the last quarter.
Iowa State threatened only after five minutes of the second half when the Cyclones reached pay dirt on a 63-yard drive.
This enabled Iowa State to crowd, 6-7. Bob Clendening, the Cyclone place-kicker, failed to convert.
The other Iowa State touchdown, resulting from a desperation march fired by Bill Weeks’ pitching arm, came on the last play.
The field house clock actually had run past the allotted 15 minutes. But Referee Bat Shunatona, after huddling with the timekeeper, decided the Cyclone had one more play.
Halfback Jerry McGlynn promptly smashed for the last foot.
A second before Husker Ron Clark had bumped Cyclone Sy Wilhelmi over the sidelines just inside the flag.
The Cyclone end had grabbed an 18-yard Weeks pitch and was trying to score in the corner.
It was not until the last few minutes that the brilliant Bob Reynolds was able to break the shackles of a stubborn Cyclone defense.
Bob scored the clinching touchdown, a sweep from the seven which sent him over the last stripe standing up.
This touchdown, plus two conversions, boosted his scoring total to 134 points.
With the Huskers saving their aerial fireworks for Oklahoma, the Cyclones sometimes used an eight and nine-man line to stop the power sweeps.
The strong wall kept Reynolds’s rushing below par. Bob carried 26 times for 109 net yards.
This boosted his ground total to 1,260 as he added to the Big Seven scoring and rushing record established last week.
Although Reynolds’s rushing yardage was not as great as in recent games, his total was one more yard than total credited to the entire Cyclone ground troops.
Weeks, the Cyclones’ ace passer, also stretched his conference mark. Bill rang the bell for 137 yards on 11 of 20 attempts. His record now stands at 104 of 197 completed for 1,433 yards.
The Cyclone overhead barrage, however, didn’t reach alarming proportions until the last two minutes. And the Huskers already had the game safely in the bag.
Iowa State’s Jim Doran got only two of these pitches. But he still leads the league with 38 catches for 595 yards.
In contrast to the wild scoring orgies of recent weeks, the game was a display of conservative football, with the Nebraska defensive platoon coming in for a lion’s share of the laurels.
The unit enabled Nebraska to control the game. It limited the Cyclone offensive to 57 plays, while Nebraska had 77.
This was important during the fourth quarter when the Cyclones only operated offensively for three plays until Nebraska had powered in front, 20-6.
Nebraska used an early break to set up the first touchdown.
Two early drives had been halted by the Cyclone and a third collapsed, forcing a Reynolds punt.
Bob booted the first of two perfect coffin-corner kicks.
The ball went out on the Iowa State 6. Three plays later Weeks, attempting a pitch-out fumbled when Dick Goeglein crashed in with a terrific tackle.
The pigskin squirted from Weeks’s arms and Tony Winey, Shelton sophomore, recovered on the Cyclone six.
Adduci rammed his way across on two plays, jarring the Cyclone forward wall with a mighty pay-off lunge from the two.
This was the best Nebraska could do the first half. Several other drives bogged down before the stout Cyclone defense.
Iowa State penetrated Nebraska territory only once. And this was a mild passing threat which wilted on the Husker 26.
After the intermission the scoring fireworks started.
The Cyclones started from the Iowa State 27 after Frank Simon’s kick-off had bounced off Mark Rothacker’s shins.
Rothacker regained possession and hurried to the Cyclone 27.
The Iowa State offensive never let up until it reached pay territory.
Weeks got the tally. He caught the Husker left flank and secondary asleep, so he ran down the sidelines after fading back for a touchdown pass.
There were five minutes played in the third quarter when the Cyclones scored.
Nebraska needed only six minutes to regain the lost ground.
The Huskers retaliated by rushing the kick-off to the Husker 31 and never relinquished possession until Adduci had scored.
The Scarlet never left the ground on this drive. Adduci, Reynolds and Bill Mueller carried the mail.
The touchdown play was a fooler.
Reynolds had just slammed the middle for five yards and a first down on the Cyclone four.
As the Iowa State forward wall converged to stop Reynolds, Quarterback Fran Nagle faked to Bob into the line, then handed to Adduci. Nick pedaled around end to score unmolested.
Reynolds kicked the important conversion which gave Nebraska a 14-6 margin.
The last Nebraska touchdown drive started from the Husker 31. It was kept alive by a trio of fourth-down wedge smashed engineered by Nagle.
The path was easy to the 13, where the Cyclones made their last ditch stand.
It required a Reynolds sweep to get the score. He ran from the seven, giving the hip to one tackler who had eluded the Nebraska blockers at the five.
Iowa State ran and passed 74 yards in the closing minutes for the Cyclone finale.
A 30-yard run by Weeks from deep pass formation, a 34-yard screen pass, Weeks to Maury Schnell, and the near pay-off toss to Wilhelmi ate up the yardage. Jerry Cimburek, Bob Olson and Stan Campbell were the big wheels in the Cyclone defense. They drew credit for nine, eight and seven unassisted tackles, respectively.
Verl Scott, Bob Mullen, Reynolds, who did double duty; Rex Hoy, and Goeglein led the Husker defense. Mullen was in on 10 stops, Scott on nine.
Nebraska is 86-17 all-time against Iowa State.
|Penn State||Oct. 21|
|Kansas State||Nov. 11|
|Iowa State||Nov. 18|
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