Huskers wary of tough Bruins

(c) Copyright the News & Observer Publishing Co. and The Associated Press, 1994

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- A year ago, Nebraska beat UCLA 14-13, and nobody was happy.

The Cornhuskers were unable to get their ground game rolling. UCLA thought it let a great chance for a big win slip away.

Both teams get another chance Saturday when the No. 13 Bruins (2-0) play the No. 2 Cornhuskers (2-0).

"I know our players will remember it was 14-13," Nebraska coach Tom Osborne said. "We had some chances. We dropped the ball a few times.

"I'm sure UCLA will look at the fact that they had a touchdown called back. There are probably a lot of ifs on their side of the ball, too. But they certainly played us very tough and it could have gone either way."

UCLA is making its first road trip of the season, while Nebraska is home for the first time after road wins in the Kickoff Classic over West Virginia and Sept. 8 at Texas Tech.

"It's going to feel really good being the home team and having the home field advantage," said NU fullback Cory Schlesinger. "It also feels good having gone away and performed well. I think we'll be able to perform even better since we're home."

That Cornhusker confidence is shared by UCLA after its encounter with Nebraska a year ago. The Huskers needed a third-quarter scoring pass from Tommie Frazier to tight end Gerald Armstrong to pull out the win after trailing 10-0 in the first half. Nebraska managed only 208 yards rushing in that game as UCLA's defense challenged the Husker attack.

"I think it probably helps us," Bruin coach Terry Donahue said. "If Nebraska had blown us away out here, certainly subconsciously our confidence would not be there and we would not be showing confidence that we could match up and hold them.

"I think any time you play a team as close as we played Nebraska last year, the players who participated in that game at least are going to feel confident and they're going to feel, 'Hey, we're in the same league with these guys and we can play with these guys."'

Nebraska linebacker Ed Stewart expects a UCLA team full of confidence after last year's showing.

"It's a good thing we have them at our place this year," he said.

But the close contest also had a benefit for Nebraska, Stewart said.

"It's definitely going to motivate us. It's a big game for both clubs. We need to win and win impressively," he said.

A year ago, UCLA entered the Nebraska game after a 27-25 loss to California. This year the Bruins beat Tennessee 25-23 but struggled last week to pull out a 17-10 win against SMU.

"This year's UCLA team is not last year's UCLA team," Donahue said. "Our defensive team is different than it was last year. There's been changes on our team