No.5 Nebraska all over Cyclones, 49-14

November 17, 1996

By Mike Koolbeck

Gazette sportswriter

ImagePHOTO: Nebraska linebacker Terrell Farley (43) drags down Iowa State running back Troy Davis for a loss Saturday, November 16, 1996, during a 49-14 Nebraska victory in Ames. Davis managed 138 yards, leaving him just 40 yards shy of the 2,000 mark. (AP photo)

AMES -- There was no silver lining on a rain-soaked afternoon Saturday at Cyclone Stadium.

No.5 Nebraska got 214 yards rushing from sophomore Ahman Green and kept Iowa State's Troy Davis from topping 2,000 en route to a 49-14 whipping of the Cyclones before a crowd of 47,850 at Cyclone Stadium.

Davis came into the game needing 178 yards to become the first player in NCAA history to rush for 2,000 yards in more than one season. He got 138, leaving him 40 yards shy heading into next week's season finale at No.9 Kansas State.

Davis dropped into second place in the national rushing derby behind Texas Tech junior Byron Hanspard, who had 257 yards in Tech's 56-21 win over Southwestern Louisiana. Hanspard has 2,000 yards, making him the sixth player in NCAA Division I-A history to crack that barrier.

Davis did become the NCAA's all-time leading rusher over two seasons with 3,970 yards.

But it went for naught against the Huskers (9-1 overall, 7-0 Big 12), who posted their 30th straight conference win, and 47th overall triumph in their last 50 games since a 19-10 loss at Iowa State Nov. 14, 1992.

"They played like a two-time defending national championship team today," Iowa State Coach Dan McCarney said of Nebraska, which rolled up 388 yards of rushing offense and 491 yards of total offense and held the Cyclones (2-8, 1-6) to 238 total yards. "They were in control the whole way."

Oft-maligned junior quarterback Scott Frost threw touchdown passes of 6 and 35 yards to junior tight end Vershan Jackson and Damon Benning slammed in from 6 yards out as Nebraska blasted to a 20-0 lead in the first quarter.

Frost lunged in from 1 yard out with 21 seconds left in the first half to push Nebraska's lead to 28-0.

And the game was over.

''I earned my scholarship,'' said Green, whose 4-yard touchdown run in the third quarter upped Nebraska's lead to 35-0. Frost added a 2-yard run and reserve quarterback Matt Turman a 1- yard run for Husker scores.

''Overall, we're glad to come over here and get out of here with a win,'' Nebraska Coach Tom Osborne said.

The Huskers were favored by 40½ points.

Iowa State junior wide receiver Ed Williams hauled in touch down passes of 22 and 2 yards for the Cyclone scores. The former, from senior Todd Doxzon, came in the third quarter and was only the fifth touchdown allowed all season by Nebraska's No.1 defense. All have been pass plays.

The latter, from sophomore Todd Bandhauer, came with 1:06 left in the game. It capped a 16-play, 72-yard drive. Davis carried 10 times for 39 yards.

''We were trying to do all we can to move the ball and get some points on the board,'' McCarney said of Davis' late exploits. ''I wanted to get more than seven points on the board and our best football player by far is Troy Davis. He usually can make some things happen.''

Davis' 3-yard carry on the first play of the drive pushed him past 100 yards for the 16th straight game and the seventh time in eight games against top 25 ranked teams. He has rushed for 120 or more yards in 20 of his last 21 games since the start of last season.

''Davis is a great back,'' Osborne said, praising Davis' ''durability and courage.''

''He's taken a pounding,'' Os borne said. ''They keep giving him the ball. After awhile, it's got to take a toll.''

It may have. For the first time since the last game of his fresh man year, Davis was a no-show at the post-game press conference. He was seen signing auto graphs for a crowd of admirers outside the Jacobson Athletic Building, however.

''Troy's a competitor, just like myself, and it's tough to lose,'' Cyclone senior quarterback Todd Doxzon said. ''I don't know his mental status right now. I haven't really sat down and talked to him at all.''

A Davis fumble at the Cyclone 35 on the first possession of the game set up Nebraska's first touchdown. It was only his fourth fumble of the season. Nebraska has converted 27 turn overs into 143 points this sea son.

''I think Nebraska is as fine a team as there is in college foot ball,'' McCarney said. ''They'll make run at the whole ball of wax for the third year in a row. They have the ability and talent to do that.''

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