If you haven’t already, check out our look at the start of the game and the first three touchdowns.
BOOM! We’re back near the end of the first quarter, and the Nebraska Cornhuskers have been punched in the mouth. Gary Barnett has turned Husker football against itself, out-toughing and outrunning the Blackshirts. However, the dominance did not end in the first quarter. In fact, as you will see, the Colorado Buffaloes ran roughshod over the Huskers for a while.
CU gets the ball back at the 20 after a long kickoff return for Nebraska leads to an easy field goal try. The Huskers just put their first points on the board, though they were held out of the endzone. Colorado needed to score to put them away for good. The drive started well, as Bobby Purify went over 100 yards on the ground (in the first quarter) after the offensive line bulldozed a Ralphie-sized hole.
Once again, the offensive line was dominant the entire game. Andre Gurode and Victor Rogers are the biggest names from the 2001 group, but every player up front took Nebraska’s will to win that day. This touchdown from Chris Brown, his first of the day, is a prime example. He doesn’t get touched until the five yard line:
After a punt from Nebraska, the CU offense was back on the field. The second quarter picked up where the first left off. Chris Brown, reprising his role as battering ram, gained five tough yards, but faced with tough down-and-distance situations, Bobby Pesavento took over. His pinpoint accuracy converted a few tough plays in the second, including these darts to Daniel Graham and Derek McCoy to set up a scoring play.
At the goal line, we get to see the rise of Chris Brown in real time. He has been used sparingly up to this point, usually coming in when Bobby Purify got tired. His physical running and huge stature is too tough to keep off the field, especially when the Buffs need to run out clock for the rest of the game. This play is always one of my favorites. Chris Brown waltzes into the end zone, shrugs off the chipshot by the Nebraska defender, and watches Gurode block someone out of the back of the end zone. It was just that kind of day.
The Buffs start to relax near the end of the second and it costs them. The defense, which had held Eric Crough to less than ten yards of total offense at this point, gets fooled by two misdirection plays and gives up big play touchdowns. Crough finds his accuracy on the run and is starting to move the ball well. If the Buffs aren’t careful, their 35-3 lead may go to 35-24 at halftime.
Luckily, when they need a score, Chris Brown answers again. A simply counter play with two pulling offensive lineman fools half of NU’s linebacking corps, and the hole opened up on the right side is open grass for Chris Brown to gallop.
The Buffs will walk into halftime with a 42-23 lead, which is closer than the game has been. How do they finish? I mean, we already know, but I’ll watch with delight anyway.