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Frank Solich Leads His Huskers Into Battle Against Colorado

Emotions Will Be High In Friday's Game
Huskers And Buffaloes Still Have Much To Play For

--  by Mark Fricke
     November 20, 2000

 

The Colorado Buffaloes limp into Memorial Stadium on Friday to face the Nebraska Cornhuskers with their worst record since 1984 when they finished the year 1-10. The Huskers, meanwhile know they have lost their shot at the Big 12 crown and the National Championship. It's a far cry from just a few years ago when the meeting between the Buffs and the Huskers usually had national title implications.

Despite the lowered stakes, the coaches of the teams say that won't effect the emotions that will go into the game.

"It's a game that brings out the best in both teams in terms of emotion and hard play. I'm sure that will be the case again." said Husker coach Frank Solich.

Nebraska's season goals were dashed with losses to Kansas State and Oklahoma. The Huskers still have hopes of a major bowl but they need a decisive victory over Colorado to get it.

Colorado coach Gary Barnett knows his team will be facing an angry Husker team seeking blood. But he says his team has their pride on the line and they will be ready.

"We know what we're walking into, but you know what, we lost to so we're pretty angry ourselves. we're pretty angry too." Barnett said.

Last season's Nebraska - Colorado game had similar emotions, and almost had tragic consequences for the Huskers. The 9-1 Huskers may have been looking ahead to the Big 12 Title game but were almost side tracked by a 6-4 Colorado team. A missed Buff field goal as time ran out in regulation spared NU and allowed them to win the game in overtime.

Solich says his team is looking for a win on Friday, but not necessarily revenge.

"I think rather than trying to make a statement that way, what we'll be about is just trying to play your best football as you finish out the year." Solich said. "There's no pointing toward Colorado."

The Huskers still have a reasonable chance at earning an at-large bid to a BCS bowl. Failing that Nebraska would be headed to either the Cotton both to face likely opponent LSU or the Holiday Bowl against Oregon or Oregon State.

Despite the likely hood of a big bowl game pay out., Solich knows there's still a sense of disappointment surrounding a team that entered the season ranked number one in the country.

"Certainly there are those fans that, as far as they're concerned, anything short of a national championship is not getting it done." Solich said. "I don't think you can sit back and worry about what the fans are thinking."

But he knows that the realities of college football today are not lost on the majority of fans.

"There are also many fans that understand that with the conference that we're in and the parity that exists in college football and to do an excellent job throughout the course of a season. That all can happen and you'll still not win a national championship." Solich said.

Kickoff for Friday's game will be 11:09 central time and be televised nationally by ABC.

 
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