LINCOLN — Nebraska again protected an erratic offense with cave-man defensive play Saturday while lifting its Big Eight record to 2-2 with a 12-0 triumph over Iowa State.
It was the kind of game that often revives the philosophical coaching shrug: “There’s no such thing as a bad victory.”
Although outyarding the Cyclones by 327-78, Nebraska was held to one touchdown, a sneak from inside the one by Quarterback Frank Patrick.
The total was fattened by Bill Bomberger’s conversion, his 23-yard field goal and Frank Avolio’s end-zone tackle of Ben King for a safety.
Bomberger, a sophomore from Columbus, is the N.U. seven-game scoring leader with eight conversions and five field goals for 23 points.
Playing before a Band Day crowd of 65,078, the Huskers were slowed by losing four of seven fumbles. They gave up one interception and were penalized six times.
On the brighter side, N.U. partisans were treated to a 56-yard Patrick-to-Dick Davis pass, generous samples of Joe Orduna’s high leg action and power bursts by Davis.
With his long strike to Davis, a non-scoring effort on the closing play of the first half, Patrick showed a surprising 111 yards for his four completed passes. He threw 17 times.
Nebraska scored on its first possession, taking the ball on the Cyclone 21 following Bob Brouillette’s 11-yard punt.
Patrick guided his platoon to the seven in three plays. Tackle George Dimitri then wrapped up Ben Gregory for a yard loss. The next effort was pure frustration as Patrick rolled left, bumped shoulders with blocker Dais and was forced out on the seven.
That brought up fourth down. The faded touchdown opportunity became a field goal by Bomberger, who was successful from the 13, and the balloons went up.
Orduna fumbled the kick-off return when he met Fred Jones in a horrendous collision that kayoed the Cyclones tackle. Mel Brichacek recovered on the Nebraska 24, but Iowa State’s Lon Snook snatched rookie Larry Frost’s first-down fumble.
Peering at the N.U. goal line from 22 yards away, Iowa State took its best shots.
Webster gained five, Warder made two and King rammed for two more. Because of stops by Barry Alvarez and Meylan, there still was one yard to go to the 13 on fourth down.
Vernon Skripsky was wide to the right on a field-goal bid from the 20.
The Nebraska touchdown came in the same period, 11 plays after sophomore Cornerback Adrian Fiala intercepted John Warder’s deflected pass on the Iowa State 41.
There was a 28-yard aerial beauty to put life in this drive.
Patrick threw to End Denny Morrison, who galloped four yards after clutching the ball on the 16. After a five-yard penalty and a four-yard comeback by Orduna, big Patrick asserted himself in impressive fashion.
He thundered over tackle for a gain of four to the nine-yard line. Ben Gregory couldn’t handle Patrick’s end zone pass, so Patrick pounded around right end for a first and 10 on the one.
Patrick was no more than a foot short on a sneak. Davis gained perhaps a few inches as the Cyclones continued to jam the line. On third down, Patrick hurled himself across the submarining bodies of End Paul Topliff, Guard Brichacek and Center Roger Kudrna. Touchdown! The one and only.
Ken Geddes recovered Webster’s bobble at the Iowa State 27 on the ensuing kick-off. Patrick again came up with a key pass, and 18-yarder to Sophomore Topliff that put N.U. on the eight.
The familiar penalty was sand in the gears; Nebraska finally lost the ball on the one when Willie Muldrew checked Gregory’s fourth-down sweep.
The next play produced the safety, with Avolio catching King in the end zone.
Coach Bob Devaney had cause to do a bit of lecturing when Iowa State recovered its prescribed free kick, a punt by Brouillette. Dennis Esselmann alertly took possession on the Iowa State 45.
The fourth quarter found Warder collecting the bulk of his pass yardage. It also showed the fiber of the Cyclone defense as Snook, an impressive sophomore linebacker, Ends Ted Reimer and Mike Kirar took the lead in holding Nebraska at safe distance.
Much of the afternoon, Nebraska played the type of game that keeps an underdog encouraged. Outmanned Iowa State was snorting right up to the finish.
|Yards per carry||-0.1||3.5|
Nebraska is 86-17 all-time against Iowa State.
|Kansas State||Oct. 7|
|Iowa State||Nov. 4|
|Oklahoma State||Nov. 11|
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