40 for 40: Nebraska Football’s Defining Moments – The 2000s Locker Pass Content

By at August 14, 2012 | 8:45 AM | Print

40 for 40: Nebraska Football’s Defining Moments – The 2000s

Oct. 9, 2004 – Texas Tech 70, Nebraska 10

When Bill Callahan took over as Nebraska’s head in 2004, the buzz around his West Coast Offense was palpable, if only because of NU fans’ sheer curiosity.

A passing game at the ultimate running school? Could it work? And what about Callahan’s defensive coordinator, Kevin Cosgrove? Sure, he’d done a good job at Wisconsin. But would his “Big Ten defense” work in Lincoln.

The early returns, as seen on an awful night in Lubbock, were not good. Mike Leach’s Red Raiders were better than the Huskers. Perhaps 21 points better. But 60 points better? No.  That takes a pinch of moronic decision-making on some coach’s part. Cue Callahan.

NU trailed Tech 28-10 late in the third quarter. It wasn’t going well for quarterback Joe Dailey. So, naturally, Callahan calls three straight passes, all incompletions. Just 30 seconds burn off the clock.

Tech scores quickly. 35-10.

So Callahan pulls Dailey and inserts a true freshman named Beau Davis. Down by 25. And he instructs Davis to throw deep. Think about that.

Davis threw seven passes that night. He completed one to a guy from his own team. Three more to Texas Tech. He also lost a fumble. Cody Ross lost a fumble, too. The Red Raiders scored four touchdowns off of these turnovers, starting drives at the NU 14, 12 8 and 6-yard lines. That’s how you get to 70-10.

Afterward, Callahan grimaced and called the loss “a tough pill to swallow.”

Yeah, you think?

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