Nebraska 27
Oregon State 7

Oct. 16, 1954

45 Nebraskans See Duty in 27-7 Romp

Next stop, the end zone! That's the story of this jaunt by Bob Smith ... who, at the moment, seems heckled slightly by one of the few Beavers not blocked out. JOHN SAVAGE/THE WORLD-HERALD

LINCOLN — Nebraska got back on the victory trail with a 27-7 romp over Oregon State Saturday afternoon.

The game, stubbornly contested for three quarters, cracked open in the final period.

Cornhusker superiority was so impressive in the closing minutes that Husker Coach Bill Glassford was able to sweep the bench.

Everybody had fun — the Husker players and the near-record crowd of more than 39 thousand.

Huskers Over-Anxious

Forty-five Nebraskans, the able-bodied on the Scarlet roster, saw action. For nearly a dozen of the lads, it was a baptism under fire.

The huge throng, which spilled out of the concrete tiers and temporary stands, also saw a splendid Band Day presentation during the intermission.

Although it was apparent from the opening kick-off this was to be Nebraska’s day, there were more anxious moments early.

Most of these were crowded into the first 20 minutes.

During this early play the over-anxious Huskers — first and second stringers — were plagued by a persistent case of the jitters.

Comstock Muffs Pass

For a time the Husker machine sputtered so badly that fans feared the only bit of synchronization would be the halftime performance of the 3,700 varsity and prep musicians.

It took two surges to get the first score in the second quarter.

Nebraska fizzled away the first when Don Comstock, sophomore halfback, muffed a perfect pitch from Sophomore Quarterback Don Erway.

The play started from the Nebraska 41 and Comstock was deep in Beaver territory with a blocker for protection.

Erway Opens Up

The miscue forced a punt.

The Scarlet took no chances of wasting the second chance.

Dennis Korinek, senior halfback, exploded with a 45-yard runback of Jim Withrow’s punt. Korinek was hauled down on the Beaver 23.

Having hammered the Oregon State defense into a tight shell, Erway started doing the pitching.

Giles in Open

Don hit Senior End Bill Giles in the open and the Alliance veteran took the 21-yard pitch, stepping unmolested across the goal line.

Pev Evans failed to convert and the Huskers went into intermission riding a 6-0 lead.

They might have enjoyed a two-touchdown bulge if the second-string had not duplicated the stunt of the first stringers the preceding week.

They bogged down on the O.S. 10 as the second quarter ended.

Regulars Roar Back

This miss didn’t appear too costly when the first combination, returning with the third-quarter kick-off, scored the first time it gained possession.

This drive, which covered 73 yards in six plays, was the best offense displayed by Nebraska this season.

The swift thrust combined three rushes with three passes — all well times and well executed.

Quarterback Dan Brown concentrated the Beaver defense with a sneak for five to the 32. Bob Smith clamped the screws tighter when he wasted a yard ramming the line.

Here Come the Tricks

Then Brown dipped into his bag of tricks.

Willie Greenlaw, versatile sophomore back, took a pitch-out and streaked for the east sideline. As the Beaver tackles converged, he whipped a southpaw pass to End Andy Loehr.

Andy got to the Beaver 47. He might have gone all the way had he not stumbled.

Another Greenlaw running pitch — this time to Ron Clark — carried to the O.S. 30.

Smith Adds Point

The third pass was directed at the other flank, with Clark throwing to Greenlaw. Willie rammed to the 15 after the catch.

Bob Smith scored on the next play. It was a neatly executed fake with the Grand Island senior zipping through the middle as the frantic Beavers bulwarked the flanks.

Bob scored standing up and later converted.

The 13-0 spread had the faithful resting easy until just before the teams changed sides for the start of the fourth quarter.

Little Time to Cheer

A Nebraska fumble gave Oregon State its big chance.

It had blown an early chance in the first quarter. This time the Beavers carried through from 31 yards out with Arlo Wenstrand getting the touchdown from one yard away.

When Dallas Vestal converted, the Beavers were only six points behind.

The few followers from Corvallis, however, got little time to cheer.

Blockers Made It Easy

On the first scrimmage play after the next kick-off, John Edwards, North Platte sophomore, broke though the left side of the Beaver line.

Behind perfect blocking, he scooted all the way on an 84-yard junket. Nary an Oregon Stater got close enough to read the number of his jersey.

This time big Pev Evans’s toe delivered and Nebraska was out front, 20-7.

The Huskers boosted the count to 26-7 midway in the final period.

Reserves Tricky, Too

Giles’ partial block of Wenstrand’s punt set up the score. The ball went out of bounds on the Beaver 39.

This time the reserves stole a page from the first team’s book.

A pitch-out Erway to Harry Johnson, Valley sophomore, and a pass. Johnson to Dirkes Ralston, senior scatback from Montana, was the scoring ticket.

Ralston made the catch alone on the 25 and streaked down to sideline to score. Erway converted.

Erway Spectacular

Fumbles bogged down early Nebraska threats and penalties hurt the Huskers cause after the intermission.

A violation nullified the game’s most spectacular play.

This was a one-hand interception of an Oregon State fourth quarter pass by Erway.

Don made the catch on the 30 and streaked to pay dirt with the ball still in the one mitt.

Colorado Next

The interception gave the Huskers possession. But the score was nullified when a Scarlet lineman was detected shoving in the hastily-organized interference.

He was shoving an Oregon Stater on the pass.

The victory gave Nebraska a 2-2 record.

The next assignment is the Big Seven tussle with Colorado at Boulder Saturday. This is the student migration and the game was a sell-out several weeks ago.


More coverage

World-Herald post-game coverage (PDF)

Series history

Nebraska is 9-2 all-time against Oregon State.

See all games »

1954 season (6-5)

Minnesota Sept. 25
Iowa State Oct. 2
Kansas State Oct. 9
Oregon State Oct. 16
Colorado Oct. 23
Missouri Oct. 30
Kansas Nov. 6
Pittsburgh Nov. 13
Oklahoma Nov. 20
Hawaii Nov. 26
Duke Jan. 1

This day in history

Nebraska has played 17 games on Oct. 16. See them all »

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