LINCOLN — Orange Bowl prospects skyrocketed for Nebraska Saturday in the wake of a 25-19 Husker victory over Missouri.
The second straight upset of a favored rival left Coach Bill Glassford’s improved Huskers with a 3-1 record in the Big seven — good for second place and a preferred spot for the trip to Miami.
The 25 thousand fans who sat in 41-degree weather saw Nebraska master Coach Don Faurot’s Tigers in the same manner that Colorado was jolted last week.
On offense, the Husker line consistently outcharged the Tiger defenders as Guard Charley Bryant and Tackled Don Glantz led the way with vicious blocking.
And the starting backfield of Dan Brown, Ron Clark, Bob Smith and Willie Greenlaw played by far its best game, being in action more than three-fourth’s of the time.
Smith was roaring through the line and bowling over secondary defenders all afternoon as he picked up 91 yards on 17 carries and never once failed to gain.
Clark added 64 yards and Greenlaw 85, both running just about as hard as Smith.
Dennis Korinek gained 55 yards during the short time the second unit played and the Husker total was 331 yards on the ground.
Early in the fourth quarter Nebraska held a 25-7 lead and threatened to turn it into a rout. Missouri narrowed the margin to 25-13 with eight minutes remaining.
Then Sophomore Don Erway took a passing gamble instead of playing it safe and Missouri roared back with another touchdown.
But time ran out before the visitors had any chance to make a move for the touchdown needed to overcome the Husker lead.
Missouri always was trailing on the scoreboard except for a seven-minute period in the second quarter during which the Huskers trailed by 7-6.
All the rest of the time the Huskers were ahead — and looked like solid winners.
The starters moved 60 yards in eight plays late in the opening period, as Brown mixed up his plays expertly and kept the fire alive.
At one stage of this drive, Smith carried four straight times for gains of three, eight, 17 and 5 yards.
This unit had a first down on the Missouri 16 when the second period opened and the second lineup took over.
Korinek rammed into the middle for three yards, then on the next play, took one of his favorite delayed pitch-outs from Erway and scampered 13 yards to a touchdown and a 6-0 Husker lead.
A fumble by Fullback John Edwards was gobbled by Tony Scardino a few minutes later, and Mizzou had the ball on the Nebraska 41.
Bob Bauman crashed 15 yards on one play; and a pass from Jack Fox to Jim Hunter carried 13 yards to the three.
Hunter then ran to the tying touchdown and Fox kicked the point for a 7-6 lead.
Missouri didn’t touch the ball again until the Huskers had taken a 13-6 lead.
They marched 65 yards in 12 plays after the kick-off, Greenlaw going 16 and Clark fighting his way to the one after a pitch-out.
Brown used a first down sneak for the touchdown and Smith’s kick accounted for a 13-7 Nebraska margin at the half.
Clark protected that lead by intercepting one of Tony Scardino’s Tiger passes on the Husker 21 just 49 second before the half-time intermission.
After an exchange of fumbles early in the last half, Nebraska strengthened its lead and settled some of the tension by parading 63 yards.
When the rushing attack started to bog down, Brown tossed a wobbly 22-yard pass which End Andy Loehr caught on the one.
The senior wing from Turtle Creek, Pa., stepped over for a touchdown and a 19-7 lead.
The Tigers were roaring back after this. But the alert, cat-like Bryant recovered a fumble by Bauman on the Husker 31.
From there, the Huskers marched 69 yards in 12 plays, the starters moving the first 21 yards and the seconds going the rest of the distance.
Korinek’s 21-yard run on a pitch-out sparked the drive, and then Don Comstock carried the last 10 yards for the final Husker points on another last pitch from Erway.
Even with Erway’s kick going wide, the Huskers’ lead of 25-7 with 12:20 left made a victory appear secure.
As was to be expected, the Tigers took to the air at this point, because that’s the quickest way to score.
End Harold Burnine caught a pitch from Vic Eaton for 15 yards and then Sonny Stringer made a great running catch of the next Eaton throw for 43 yards to the Husker 17.
A Smith-Burnine pass carried to the seven and Fox went over on a fourth-down plunge from the one.
This left Nebraska ahead by 25-13 with 8:05 left and there still seemed little use to worry since Nebraska was bound to get possession after the kick-off.
But on the very first scrimmage play Erway tried to cross up the Tigers by throwing a long pass. It was intercepted by Gerry Smith and Missouri took over on its own 37.
That gamble was shown to be costly when the Tigers moved the 63 yards without losing the ball.
Jack Brase passed to Fox for the last six yards and the Tigers were back in the game with a 25-19 score and 3:20 left.
But the didn't get to run another offensive play.
Nebraska finally had to punt with 20 seconds remaining. But Brase was over-anxious on the catch and let it bounce out of his hands.
Tackle Bill Holloran got the ball in a wild scramble on the Tiger 17 and Brown held the ball on a sneak to run out the clock.
Nebraska is 65-36 all-time against Missouri.
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|Kansas State||Oct. 9|
|Oregon State||Oct. 16|
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