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Cornhuskers Return To Form
Nebraska 65
Colorado State 9

by Mark Fricke

(Lincoln, Nebraska - September 28, 1996) - It may have been the most closely watched Husker game since the 1994 Orange Bowl. Could the Huskers rebound from last week's upset by ASU? Was the offense up to standards? Could the defense keep up the pressure?

Many questions were answered when the Huskers routed Colorado State University 65-9 for the teams 700th all-time victory. The Husker offense accounted for yards in total offense while the defense allowed only one touchdown (blocking the subsequent point after).

Junior quarterback Scott Frost found himself perhaps in the strongest spotlight after a sub-par performance the prior week. Frost responded by completing 13 of 18 passes for 143 yards and two touchdowns, while running for a touchdown of his own. Frost played most of the first three quarters. The Huskers opened things up on the games first drive charging 62 yards in 10 plays. Frost completed a four yard touchdown pass to Sheldon Jackson and a quick 7-0 lead.

Nebraska's defense made their presence known on the next drive. After Colorado State marched to the Nebraska 19. A fourth down field goal attempt was blocked by Grant Wistrom keeping the Rams off the board in the first period.

The two teams traded drives in the early part of the second period. The Huskers had one touchdown pass called back for offsetting penalties, but recovered to hit paydirt on an 18 yard run by Damon Benning with 8:20 left in the half.

After trading punts, the Rams finally got on the board on a 32 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Moses Moreno to Geoff Turner. The PAT was blocked and the score was 14-6 with three-and a half minutes left.

The Huskers used the clock well in the remainder of the half, marching 66 yards on 10 plays, scoring on a 4 yard run by Scott Frost.

The Husker blackshirts gave the offense one more chance after stuffing CSU and forcing a punt. Nebraska drove into field goal range and Kris Brown connected from 27 yards out as time ran out giving Nebraska a 24-6 halftime lead.

The second half opened with much of the same tone as the first.

Colorado State tried to get a drive moving only to find Jamel Williams intercepted a bobbled pass giving the Huskers the ball. Two pass plays and two runs later the Huskers scored again. Frost completed a 4 yard strike to Sheldon Jackson for the score. It was Jackson's second TD catch of the day.

The Rams went three and out, punting back to the Huskers. Three plays later fullback Brian Schuster rumbled 15 yards for the touchdown and a 37-6 Big Red lead.

The Huskers scored again on their third possession of the quarter when Ahman Green dove in from one yard out with 5:50 remaining in the quarter.

Colorado State finally returned to the scoring column in the fourth quarter on a 27 yard Matt McDougal field goal. The Huskers topped the effort on their next drive, capped by a 2 yard Jay Sims touchdown run.

The Huskers next drive was the time for a closely watched Husker newcomer to shine. Freshman I-Back DeAngelo Evans ran the ball four consecutive times in the drive tallying 30 yards on one carry, then 6, 5 and finally wrapping up the drive with a 30 yard touchdown jaunt. The Huskers lead 58-9. The two teams played to a stalemate for the next two drives as the reserves got plenty of playing time. The game's final score came from the Huskers special teams.

Husker reserve Shevin Wiggins field a Ram punt at the CSU 43, then streaked all the way in for the score and the final 65-9 margin.

Husker quarterback coach Turner Gill was pleased with the performance of his much-maligned quarterback Scott Frost. "I thought he did a very, very good job. He did a great job of calling audibles at the line of scrimmage. He was good with the run, good with the pass. The whole offensive team played well and that's what we needed to do today."

Frost completed 13 of 16 pass attempts for 143 yards and two touchdowns. He also added 56 rushing yards on 10 carries.

Ahman Green lead Husker rushers with 163 yards on 22 carries for one touchdown. Evans added 72 yards of his own on only 6 carries.

The Husker team dominated statistically as they tallied 628 yards of total offense (476 rushing, 152 passing) compared to CSU's total of 329 yards (59 rushing, 270 passing). The Huskers recorded 32 first downs compared to CSU's 19 and did not turn the ball over during the game and did not let up a sack.

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