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Official Husker Locker Blog

2010 Nov 30

10 Memorable NU-OU Games


By HuskerLocker

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The best of the best. It's a hard list to narrow down, so feel free to throw in your two cents in the comments section. Here's our ten:

1959 Nebraska 25 Oklahoma 21: NU snapped a 17-game losing streak to OU – and snapped the Sooners' 75-game conference winning streak, too – by taking advantage of four Oklahoma fumbles. The Huskers threw as many interceptions – two - as they completed passes, but somehow it was enough despite getting outgained by OU 340-161.

1963 Nebraska 29 Oklahoma 20: Just 24 hours after the assassination of President Kennedy, the Huskers staked a 29-7 lead midway through the fourth quarter and held on. Both teams committed six turnovers in a sloppy game, only played because the Orange Bowl had to determine a Big Eight Champion and so many fans had already traveled to Lincoln. Willie Ross led all rushers with 54 yards.

1971 Nebraska 35 Oklahoma 31: The Game of the Century, No. 1 NU and No. 2 OU, waged on Thanksgiving. The Huskers and Sooners lived up to their billing in a thrilling, back-and-forth game that wasn't decided until Oklahoma's final deep passes felt incomplete. Johnny Rodgers created his signature play with a 72-yard punt return to score the game's first touchdown, but the Huskers got career performances from Rich Glover (22 tackles) and Jeff Kinney (171 yards rushing) as 55 million watched the Big Red and quarterback Jerry Tagge stage a dramatic fourth-quarter drive for the win.

1976 Oklahoma 20 Nebraska 17: The origin of “Sooner Magic.” NU led 17-7 heading into the fourth quarter until Elvis Peacock scored on a 50-yard run to cut the lead to 17-13. Then OU won with a drive that included 79 yards in trick plays. The first was a halfback pass for 47 yards. The second was a hook-and-lateral to Peacock for 32 yards down to the Nebraska 2-yard line. Peacock scored on the next play for his third and final touchdown.

1978 Nebraska 17 Oklahoma 14: NU upset No. 1 OU by recovering six fumbles. The last of them was coughed up by the Sooners' Billy Sims as the Huskers' 3-yard line with 3:27 left. Rick Berns rumbled for 113 yards and Jim Pillen finished with eight tackles and two fumble recoveries.

1982 Nebraska 28 Oklahoma 24: Arguably the most exciting game in the series aside from The Game of the Century as the teams combined for more than 800 yards. Marcus Dupree flashed his considerable skill, blasting through the NU line for a 86-yard touchdown to start the second half, while Mike Rozier plowed for 96 total yards himself. OU's late comeback was cut short by an interception from walk-on Scott Strasburger, after which Husker fans threw oranges and rushed the field.

1984 Oklahoma 17 Nebraska 7: The Stand. OU, pushed around by the No. 1 Huskers' offense for most of the game, conducted a goal-line stand late in the fourth quarter to upset NU and set itself up for the Orange Bowl and a shot at the national title. On fourth and one foot, with the Sooners leading 10-7, Tom Osborne chose not to kick the field goal. Instead, he called for a pitch to Jeff Smith, who slipped and was smothered by Oklahoma for a two-yard loss. OU capped the win with a late touchdown.

1986 Oklahoma 20 Nebraska 17: More Sooner Magic. NU, wearing red jerseys and red pants, again led 17-7 heading into the final quarter. OU kicked a field goal, then had to drive 94 yards with just four minutes left – running a wishbone offense – to tie the game. The Sooners did it, getting help from a Husker facemask penalty on fourth down. OU QB Jamelle Holieway found Keith Jackson for a 17-yard touchdown to tie the game. Nebraska was forced to punt on its following possession. Then Holieway pulled off another miracle, hitting Jackson for 37 yards on third-and-long to set up the game-winning field goal.

1991 Nebraska 19 Oklahoma 14: Time for some Husker magic, as NU clinched a tie for the Big Eight title by overcoming a 14-3 halftime deficit. Calvin Jones ran for 118 yards and Johnny Mitchell caught seven passes for 137 yards to cement his status as the nation's best tight end.

2001 Nebraska 20 Oklahoma 10: Black Flash 41 Reverse Pass. Both teams ran it in the game, but only Nebraska had Eric Crouch to execute it right. He handed off to Thunder Collins, who pitched to Mike Stuntz, who threw a perfect pass to Crouch, who was streaking behind the OU defense, for a touchdown. The play cemented Crouch's Heisman candidacy, and gave NU an insurmountable 20-10 lead in what had been a battle of two defenses.

See also: What's Your Favorite NU-OU Memory?

Tags: big 12 championship, oklahoma, johnny rodgers, mike rozier, turner gill, calvin jones, eric crouch

Comments (2)

Profile image for AlliancehuskerLocker Pass member

The 1989 game was the beginning of Husker dominance over the Sooners for several years. NU 42-25 in Lincoln. Gerry Gdowski tossed four TD passes for NU that day.

– Dec 1, 2010 at 7:19 am

Profile image for BigSky13

I remember the 1988 game, after 4 straight losses to OU, Big Red overcame the rain to win 7-3. I couldn't wipe the smile off my face for a week after that game.

– Nov 30, 2010 at 11:07 pm

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