Bowl Game Programs
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as of  01/23/17

*All recaps taken from the official NU Media and Recruiting Guide, Husker Press Box, or Huskers.com*
*Some images borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters as noted*
I have all 53 bowl programs posted here, requiring only yearly updates
as the Huskers keep adding to the total!

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1941 Rose Bowl
NU 13 - Stanford 21

Pasadena, CA - Jan 1, 1941.   Nebraska's first bowl game, played in front of an estimated 92,000 in Pasadena on January 1, 1941.  NU lost 21-13 to the nation's #2 team, finishing the regular season #7 in the AP.
     Nebraska was the only Big 6 team to play in the post season that year.  Coached by Biff Jones, the Huskers led the Stanford "Indians" twice in the first half, but fell behind as they couldn't adjust to Stanford's "innovative" T-formation.   The huskers took an early lead just six plays after the kickoff when fullback Vike Francis plunged over from the 2.  Stanford tied four plays later when Hugh Gallarneau bolted over from the 9.
     In the second quarter, the Huskers took the lead again on a 33-yard Herm Rohrig to Allen Zikmund pass, but the Indians came back on Frankie Albert's 41-yard TD pass to Gallarneau for a 14-13 half-time lead.  A 39-yard TD punt return by Pete Kmetovic iced the game for the Indians in the third quarter.  The 92,000 fans on hand still represent the largest crowd ever to see Nebraska play.     

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1955 Orange Bowl
NU 7 - Duke 34
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1955.   If Nebraska's first bowl bid was a memorable one, it's second was one to forget.  The 1954 Cornhuskers finished second behind Oklahoma in the Big Seven conference and went to Miami under the no-repeat rule.

     Making their first bowl appearance in 14 years, Bill Glassford's Cornhuskers trailed Duke's Blue Devils at the half, 14-0, but pulled within 7 early in the third quarter after a minus 2 yard Duke punt.  Halfback Don Comstock scored from the three to cap a 35 yard drive.  After that, it was all Duke.  Coach Bill Murray's Blue Devils rolled 65 yards to score on their next possession and added two more tallies in the fourth quarter to ice the game, 34-7.
 

 

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1962 Gotham Bowl
NU 36 - Miami 34
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New York, NY - Dec 15, 1962.   Playing under Coach Bob Devaney, Nebraska won its first bowl game in three tries, upsetting Miami and George Mira, 36-34, in the second and last of New York's now-defunct Gotham Bowl.  Playing in Yankee Stadium before only 6,166 fans in freezing weather, the Huskers and Hurricanes put on one of the greatest bowl shows ever, trading scores in every quarter.

     Willie Ross' 1-yard plunge and Bill "Thunder" Thornton's subsequent two-point run gave the Huskers' the lead for good, 36-27, with 12:10 left in the game.  Mira, who passed for 321 yards, led a valiant comeback attempt but was thwarted by a last-minute interception by Husker guard Bob Brown.
 
             (image borrowed from Scott Shelburne of Davenport, NE - Thanks, Scott!)

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1964 Orange Bowl
NU 13 - Auburn 7
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1964.   Nebraska made its second Orange Bowl trip a happier one than the first with a 13-7 win over Auburn in the 1964 Miami classic.  The Huskers evened their bowl record with the win and handed Bob Devaney his second bowl win in as many tries.
     Husker QB Dennis Claridge broke the game open before most of the 72,647 fans had settled in their seats.  On the Huskers' second play from scrimmage, Claridge bolted 68 yards down the sideline to put NU ahead 7-0.  At the time, it was the longest TD run in Orange Bowl history.  Moments later, Dave Theisen broke another Orange Bowl record with a 31-yard field goal.  The record lasted until the second quarter when Theisen booted a 36-yarder to give NU a 13-0 halftime lead.
     Auburn QB Jimmy Sidle almost brought the Tigers back, but Husker LB John Kirby batted a fourth-and-four pass away at the goal line with less than three minutes to go to preserve the win for Nebraska.

(image borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters)

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1965 Cotton Bowl
NU 7 - Arkansas 10
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Dallas, TX - Jan 1, 1965.   Coach Frank Broyles' Arkansas Razorbacks mounted an 80-yard fourth quarter drive against a previously impregnable Nebraska defense to down the Huskers 10-7 in NU's first Dallas appearance.  The Huskers had led most of the way in one of the greatest defensive battles in bowl history.

     Arkansas scored first on a 31-yard Tom McKnelly field goal in the first quarter.  But sophomore Harry Wilson capped a 69-yard Husker march in the second quarter on a 1-yard plunge to give Nebraska a 7-3 half-time lead.  The Huskers held that lead until Bobby Burnett finished the Arkansas drive with a 3-yard TD run with 4:50 left in the game.  In the fierce defensive struggle, first downs were even at 11, and the Razorbacks held a slim 176-168 total offense edge.

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1966 Orange Bowl
NU 28 - Alabama 39
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1966.   With the national championship riding on the outcome, Coach Bob Devaney's Huskers took on Alabama's Crimson Tide for the first time. 

       Nebraska went into the game 10-0 and ranked third, Alabama was 8-1-1 and fourth.  But earlier in the day, top-ranked Michigan State lost to UCLA, in the Rose Bowl and LSU knocked off No. 2 Arkansas in the Cotton Bowl to set up a national title game in the Orange Bowl.

      Playing in Nebraska's first night bowl game, 'Bama won the title 39-28.  The Tide led 24-7 at the half and the game was never in serious doubt, but led by the passing of Bob Churchich, the Huskers fought back and made the final score respectable.

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1967 Sugar Bowl
NU 7 - Alabama 34
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New Orleans, LA - Jan 2, 1967.   Never one to duck a challenge, Coach Bob Devaney and his Huskers accepted a bid for a rematch with Alabama and Bear Bryant in the Sugar Bowl, January 2, 1967.  It turned out to be a little too much of a challenge as No. 3 'Bama handed the No. 7 Huskers a 34-7 thumping.

     The Tide rolled up a 17-0 first-quarter advantage and led at halftime, 24-0, behind the passing of Kenny Stabler.  Sophomore fullback Dick Davis prevented a complete whitewashing with a 15-yard TD catch of a Bob Churchich pass on the first play of the fourth quarter.  Husker QB Churchich sparkled again against the Tide, completing 21 of 34 passes for 201 yards.  With the loss, the Huskers joined Alabama in holding the dubious distinction of being the only teams to lose in all four major bowls. 

1969 Sun Bowl
NU 45 - Georgia 6
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El Paso, TX - Dec 20, 1969.  Golden-toed Paul Rogers booted a Sun Bowl record four filed goals - all in the first quarter- and Coach Bob Devaney's Huskers romped to a 45-6 win over Georgia in the 35th edition of El Paso's Sun Bowl.
     Rogers booted FG's of 50, 32, 42 and 37 yards, and sophomore IB Jeff Kinney added a TD run of 11 yards that gave NU an 18-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.  For his record-setting effort, Rodgers was named the game's outstanding offensive player.  The Big Eight co-champion Huskers rolled up a 355-185 total offense advantage over the outmanned Bulldogs.  Dan Schneiss led Husker rushers with 63 yards, and Van Brownson completed 11 of 18 passes for 109 yards.
     After two years away from the bowl scene, the Sun Bowl started an NCAA record run of 32-straight bowl appearances for the Huskers through the 2000 season.
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1971 Orange Bowl
NU 17 - LSU 12
Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1971.  The Huskers earned their first national title in school history with a heart-stopping win over Louisiana State on Jan. 1, 1971 in the Orange Bowl.   LSU scored on a 31-yard pass from Buddy Lee to Al Coffee to cap a 75-yard drive as time expired in the third to give the Tigers a 12-10 lead heading into the final quarter.  The Huskers responded with a 67-yard, 13 play drive that ended when Tagge snuck in from the 1-yard line with 8:50 to go.  The drive's big play came on a third down and seven at the LSU 20 when Tagge completed a 15-yard pass to Jeff Kinney, who scored three plays later.
     On the next possession, the Huskers partially blocked a Tiger punt and had a first down at the LSU 42, but after two first downs, Joe Orduna fumbled on the 12-yard line with 4:09 remaining to give the Tigers a final chance.  Any comeback hopes temporarily ended when Willie Harper stole the ball from Bert Jones with 1:20 left.  Nebraska lost the ball with 52 seconds remaining, but Bob Terrio intercepted a desperation pass to seal the Huskers' first title.
     Nebraska was able to take over the top spot after No. 1 Texas and No. 2  Ohio State lost earlier in the day.  Texas was voted No. 1 in the UPI poll, which ws decided before the bowl game outcomes.  "The players were very elated that there was another door open," Coach Bob Devaney said.  "Even the Pope would have to vote us No. 1."
1972 Orange Bowl
NU 38 - Alabama 6

Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1972.   It was supposed to be another "Game of the Century," rivaling Nebraska's 35-31 win over Oklahoma a few weeks earlier.  The 12-0 Huskers were No. 1, the 11-0 Alabama Crimson Tide was No. 2, but the Orange Bowl had a dream game for a little less than a quarter.
     The Huskers struck early on a 2-yard TD run by Jeff Kinney, before Johnny Rodgers broke the Tide's back with a 77-yard punt return for a touchdown on the last play of the first quarter.  The Huskers added two more scores in the second stanza, and by halftime, the Huskers left no doubt about who was No. 1, as Nebraska led 28-0.  The Huskers continued to dominate and rolled to a 38-6 win, giving Nebraska a second straight national title and Coach Bob Devaney a satisfying first win in three tries over  'Bama Coach Bear Bryant.

(image borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters)

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1973 Orange Bowl
NU 40 - Notre Dame 6
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1973.   Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers went wild, scoring four touchdowns and passing for another, as the Cornhuskers became the first team to win three straight Orange Bowls, romping over Notre Dame, 40-6.  In his last game as a Cornhusker, Rodgers was moved to I-back from his usual wingback position, and on the game's first play, he took a pitch for a 13-yard gain.  It was a sign of things to come.
     Johnny Rodgers capped his career by scoring on runs of eight, four and five yards and caught the Irish defense by surprise with a 52-yard TD pass to Frosty Anderson in the second quarter.  He scored the last of his 50 career TD's (including bowls) when he caught a sideline pass from Dave Humm in the third quarter and scampered 50 yards to pay dirt.

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1974 Cotton Bowl
NU 19 - Texas 3
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Dallas, TX - Jan 1, 1974.    Tom Osborne's Nebraska Cornhuskers broke open a tight contest in the third quarter with a pair of game-breaking plays to chalk up a 19-3 win over the mighty Texas Longhorns in the 1974 Cotton Bowl.  The chilled New Year's Day crowd of 67,500 saw the Big Eight's runner-up and the Southwest Conference champions battle to a 3-3 tie at halftime, thanks to a brilliant Longhorn 1-yard-line stand just before the gun.
     But the Huskers weren't to be denied and midway through the third quarter, safety Bob Thornton returned a Texas field goal try 41-yards to set up the clinching touchdown.  Ritch Hahe got the final 12 yards on a reverse and Rich Sanger kicked the point to make it 10-3.  Four plays later, John Bell recovered a Texas fumble at the Texas 19 and three plays after that Tony Davis ripped in from the three to make it 17-3 with the Sanger PAT.
     Texas had scored first on a 22-yard field goal by Bill Schott in the wake of a Husker fumble, but early in the second quarter defensive end Steve Manstedt picked up a Roosevelt Leaks' fumble and raced 65 yards to the eight, resulting in a Sanger FG.
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1974 Sugar Bowl
NU 13 - Florida 3
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New Orleans, LA - Dec 31, 1974.  Rallying from a 10-0 deficit, NU scored three times in the fourth quarter to defeat the tough Florida Gators 13-10.  It was the Huskers' sixth straight bowl victory.
     From the start, it was an uphill climb for the Huskers. Florida scored once in the first quarter and kicked a field goal in the second, while holding NU's usually strong offense to 138 total yards.  But in the second half, FB Tony Davis, QB Terry Luck, kicker Mike Coyle and the Blackshirts led NU to victory, even though the Huskers didn't get rolling until the fourth quarter.
     Freshman IB Monte Anthony scored NU's first TD with 13:24 left in the game, running up the middle for two yards, making the score 10-7, UF.
     Davis set up Coyle's two deciding field goals with inspired running, as he picked up 126 yards on 17 carries, including the longest run of the game for 40 yards.  For his performance, Davis was named the game's MVP, which he also received the previous year in the Cotton Bowl.  Coyle tied the score on a 37-yard FG with 7:13 left.  With only 1:46 remaining, his 39-yard kick gave the Huskers their sixth consecutive postseason win.
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1975 Fiesta Bowl
NU 14 - Arizona State 17
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Tempe, AZ - Dec 26, 1975.   Nebraska's record-tying six-game bowl win streak was snapped by Arizona State in the 1975 Fiesta Bowl, when the Sun Devils edged the Huskers 17-14 before 51,396 partisan fans on ASU's home field.
     The final blow came with 4:50 remaining in the game, when ASU kicker Dan Kush successfully booted a 29-yard field goal, breaking a 14-14 tie and capping a rally from a 14-6 deficit after three quarters.
     Fighting to the very end, Nebraska took the ensuing kickoff and drove to the Arizona State 31-yard line with less than two minutes to play.  The Huskers' next two plays were incomplete passes, but on third down, QB Terry Luck hit fullback Tony Davis with a pass at the ASU 21-yard line.  Davis was hit hard by two Arizona State players and fumbled the ball.  The Sun Devils recovered, killed the clock and claimed their 17-14 win.
     Nebraska ended the 1975 season at 10-2 and ranked No. 9 in the country.  The Huskers lost their last two games of the year to top-ranked Oklahoma, 35-10, and the second-ranked Sun Devils.
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1976 Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl
NU 27 - Texas Tech 24
 
Houston, TX - Dec 31. 1976.  In the most exciting bowl game of the year, Nebraska edged a determined Texas Tech team 27-24 in the Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl.
     Twice Nebraska rallied to overcome 10-point deficits.  With Texas Tech ahead 17-7 and time running out in the second quarter, QB Vince Ferragamo moved the Huskers 80 yards in less than two minutes to score a 22-yard TD pass to Mark Defresne.  But Tech running back Billy Taylor countered early in the third with an 8-yard TD run to make it 24-14.
     Once again, the Huskers started to work on the Tech lead.  IB Rick Berns broke around the end and dashed untouched for an 18 yard TD to put NU within three.  The Huskers finally took the lead when Ferragamo connected with SE Chuck Malito for a 23-yard TD pass.  Malito gained 107 yards in three catches to earn most valuable lineman honors in the game.  Malito's TD was set up in part by a partially blocked punt by DB's Ted Harney and Kent Smith.
     The final score was in doubt until DE Reggie Gast recovered a Red Raider fumble with 1:34 left in the game.  The fumble killed a Tech threat and allowed Nebraska to run out the clock.
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1977 Liberty Bowl
NU 21 - N. Carolina 17
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Memphis, TN - Dec 19,  1977.    QB Randy Garcia came off the bench in the fourth quarter to throw two TD passes to rally Nebraska from a 17-7 fourth-quarter deficit to a 21-17 win over North Carolina in the 19th annual Liberty Bowl.
     Garcia, who replaced starter Tom Sorley, first hit WB Curtis Craig for a sensational diving catch and a 10-yard TD with 10:51 left to cut the Husker deficit to 17-14.  Garcia then threw a 34-yard scoring pass to Tim Smith with 3:16 left in the game to cap a rally that ended UNC's upset hopes.
     The Tar Heels drew first blood early in the second quarter on a 12-yard scoring pass from Matt Kupec to TE Brooks Williams.  After the Huskers tied the game at 7-7 on a 15-yard TD run by FB Dodie Donnell, Kupec threw a 1-yard scoring pass to FB Bob Loomis late in the half for a 14-7 North Carolina lead at the half.
     Carolina upped its lead to 17-7 late in the third quarter on a 47-yard FG by Tom Biddle, and the Tar Heels appeared to have the game well in control until Garcia's heroics brought NU back.
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1979 Orange Bowl
NU 24 - OU 31
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Miami, FL - Jan 1,  1979.    In the fist-ever matchup of Big 8 teams in a bowl game, Nebraska just missed duplicating its 17-14 win over Oklahoma several weeks earlier in losing to the Sooners 31-24 in the 45th annual Orange Bowl.
     Nebraska got off to a fast start, driving 80 yards in 15 plays to take a 7-0 lead on Tom Sorley's 21-yard touchdown pass to Tim Smith.  But the Huskers watched the revenge-minded Sooners score 24 unanswered points.
     Nebraska's rally started with 9:12 left in the game when I-back Rick Berns capped a 78-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown run that reduced the deficit to 31-17.  A little more than a minute later, defensive tackle David Clark recovered quarterback Thomas Lott's fumble at the OU 42, and the Huskers were back in the game.  Oklahoma's defense yielded 35 yards to the seven, but stiffened to stop I-back Craig Johnson on a fourth-and-one with 4:24 to seal the win.  The Huskers did march 58 yards in 10 plays to score on a 2-yard pass from Sorely to Junior Miller on the final play of the game.
(image borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters)
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1980 Cotton Bowl
NU 14 - Houston 17
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Dallas, TX  - Jan 1, 1980.   Reserve QB Terry Elston threw a 6-yard fourth down TD pass to Eric Herring with just 12 seconds left in the game as Houston handed Nebraska a heartbreaking 17-14 loss in the 44th Cotton Bowl game - another six-year string of incredible finishes in Husker bowl history.
     Nebraska struck first as IB Jarvis Redwine scored on a 9-yard run late in the first period, but Houston came back to tie 7-7 on an 8-yard Elston run early in the second period, where the score remained at halftime.
     After a scoreless third period, SWC champion Houston took its first lead of the game, 10-7, on a 41-yard FG by Ken Hatfield with 8:25 left in the game.  The Huskers made little headway against the Cougar defense in the second half, but took advantage of a Houston fumble to drive 31 yards in six plays to take a 14-10 lead on Jeff Quinn's 6-yard TD pass with 3:56 left.
     The next 3:44 were all Terry Elston, who accounted for all but 11 yards of the Cougar's 66-yard winning drive.  (image borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters)
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1980 Sun Bowl
NU 31 - Mississippi St. 17

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El Paso, TX  - Dec 27, 1980.   A great passing performance by senior Jeff Quinn and a stout defensive effort enabled Nebraska to enjoy a successful return to the Sun Bowl by downing Mississippi State 31-17.
     The Huskers drew first blood just 2:30 into the game when, on the first play after MSU's Mardye McDole fumbled a Nebraska Punt, split end Todd Brown scored on a 23-yard end-around.  NU added 10 points in the second quarter on a 22-yard Kevin Seibel field goal and an 8-yard Quinn to Jeff Finn pass to take a 17-0 lead into the locker room at halftime.
     MSU finally scored in the third quarter on a 47-yard field goal and appeared to be gaining momentum when Husker defensive end Jimmy Williams recovered a fumble at the Bulldog 25 to set up a 2-yard TD run by Andra Fanklin.  The Huskers iced the game with a 52-yeard Quinn to Tim McCrady pass late in the game.  For their efforts, Williams and Quinn were named the outstanding players of the 1980 Sun Bowl.

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1982 Orange Bowl
NU 15 - Clemson 22

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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1982.  Coach Tom Osborne's Cornhuskers went into their 13th consecutive bowl game hoping New Year's magic would work.  First, Texas toppled No. 3 Alabama, Pitt knocked off No. 2 Georgia, leaving the National Title up to the No. 4 Huskers and No. 1 Clemson. It was not to be, as Tiger QB Homer Jordan and a stingy defense gave the South Carolina school their  first national title and 12-0 record.
     The Tigers scored first on a 41-yard FG to take a 3-0 lead, but NU came back with a bit of razzle-dazzle and took a 7-3 lead midway in the first quarter on a 25-yard TD pass from IB Mike Rozier to WB Anthony Steels.
     For the next two-and-a-half quarters, it was all Clemson as the opportunistic Tigers took advantage of Husker errors to score 19 unanswered points and led 22-7 after three periods.  Early in the fourth quarter, the Huskers came back on a 26-yard TD run and a two point conversion by Roger Craig, cutting the margin to 22-15, but an eighth untimely penalty stopped another promising drive moments later, and the elusive Jordan ate up all but six seconds of the last 5:24.

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1983 Orange Bowl
NU 21 - LSU 20.

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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1983.  The 1983 Orange Bowl between NU and LSU started out like the one-sided contest the odds makers had predicted.  The Husker defense held the Tigers to three yards on three plays after the opening kickoff, forcing a punt, then the NU offense drove 51 yards in six plays to take a 7-0 lead on Mark Schellen's 2-yard run with 4:03 left in the quarter.  At that point, Murphy'a Law went into effect.  After giving away three TO's that lead to LSU touchdowns, however, the Huskers were thankful to be down 14-7 at the half.
     The second half didn't start any better as NU missed a FG, then fumbled again to set up a FG that gave LSU a 17-7 lead.  But once down 10 points, the Husker offense came alive, driving 80 yards in 12 plays to score on an 11-yard pass from Turner Gill to Mike Rozier, and going 47 yards in seven plays to finally regain the lead, 21-17, early in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard option run by Gill.   A dropped pass on a faked FG prevented another score, and another interception set up an LSU FG that cut the margin to 21-20, but the Husker offense sealed the win by eating up the final 5:05. 

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1984 Orange Bowl
NU 30 - Miami 31

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Miami, FL - Jan 2, 1984.  In one of the most exciting bowl games ever played, No. 4 Miami overcame Husker rallies from 17- and 14-point deficits and took the national championship away from the Huskers.  The game was decided when strong safety Ken Calhoun knocked Turner Gill's 2-point PAT pass out of Jeff Smith's hands with 48 seconds left in the game, preserving a 31-30 home-field win in the 50th Orange Bowl.
     Behind the arm of Bernie Kosar, the 'Canes jumped to a quick 17-0 first-quarter lead and never trailed.  The Huskers rallied to score two second quarter TDs, then tied the game early in the second half on a Scott Livingston FG, but Miami scored twice in a five-minute span to go up 31-17.
     With Heisman Trophy winner Mike Rozier out with a badly bruised ankle, Junior IB Jeff Smith came in to rush for 99 yards and two TDs to pull NU to within 31-30.  Coach Tom Osborne opted to go for two and the win, in lieu of a PAT and a tie that would assure NU the title.  Thanks to a fine defensive play by Calhoun, Osborne and the Huskers came up just short.

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1985 Sugar Bowl
NU 28 - LSU 10
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New Orleans, LA - Jan 1, 1985.  Senior QB Craig Sundberg closed out his career in grand style, as he led the Huskers back from a 10-0 first-half deficit to a 28-10 win over Louisiana State in the 51st annual Sugar Bowl.
      Fired-up LSU scored on two of its first three possessions to grab the early lead, but after a rocky start, the Sundberg-led Husker offense roared to life to put 28 unanswered points on the board.  Two of the Huskers' four TDs were set up by a defense that forced six Tiger turnovers, five of them interceptions, including four off LSU starting QB Jeff Wickersham.
     Sophomore IB Doug DuBose helped spark the Huskers with a 102-yard rushing effort, but it was Sundberg who provided most of the punch, and was named the game's MVP.  Starting for the first time since arm trouble knocked him out of the starting lineup at midseason, Sundberg completed 10 of 15 passes for 143 yards, threw for three TDs and ran for the go-ahead score himself on a 9-yard sprint 6:46 into the second half.  Sundberg's three TD passes tied a Nebraska bowl record.  Two of those scoring tosses went to tight end Todd Frain, tying another NU bowl record.
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1986 Sunkist Fiesta Bowl
NU 23 - Michigan 27
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Tempe, AZ - Jan 1, 1986.  After building a 14-3 halftime lead, Nebraska self-destructed in the third quarter and was never able to recover completely in dropping a 27-23 decision to Michigan in the Sunkist Fiesta Bowl.
   The Huskers used a pair of second-quarter touchdowns by I-back Doug DuBose to take the lead, but a fumble on the third play of the second half set up a 21-yard Wolverine TD drive that cut the NU margin to 14-10.  Nebraska fumbled again on the second play after the ensuing kickoff, setting up a 38-yard TD drive that put Michigan up for good, 17-14.
     Nebraska's next drive stalled after one first down, and the Wolverines blocked Dan Wingard's punt, recovering it at the NU 6-yard line.  The Nebraska defense held, and a 19-yard Pat Moons field goal made it 20-14, Michigan, after 8:18 of the second half.  Later in the period, the Maize and Blue took advantage of two pass interference penalties to score another TD to build what proved to be an insurmountable 27-14 lead. 
     NU out-gained the Wolverines 370 to 234 yards, with 304 coming on the ground, compared to only 171 for Michigan. 
(image borrowed from Collecting Football Game Programs, by Matt Walters)

Click to Enlarge!

1987 USF&G Sugar Bowl
NU 30 - LSU 15
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New Orleans, LA - Jan 1, 1987.  Louisiana State had a 66-yard TD drive in the first three minutes of the contest and another 66-yard TD drive in the last three minutes of the game.  In between, Nebraska dominated the Tigers, ran off 30 unanswered points and posted a 30-15 win in the USF&G Sugar Bowl, the Huskers' 25th bowl appearance.
     Between those two Tiger drives, Nebraska out-yarded LSU 352-62, and had a first-down advantage of 22-3.  The Huskers made a remarkable recovery from a disheartening loss to Oklahoma at the end of the regular seaon and posted Nebraska's fourth bowl win over LSU in as many tries, and the third in five years.
     Steve Taylor became the second Nebraska QB in three years to win the Miller-Digby Trophy as the Sugar Bowl MVP.  He completed 11 of 19 passes for 110 yards and one TD and rushed 20 times for 63 yards and another score.  Of Taylor's 173 total offensive yards, 90 came in two drives in which the Huskers went from  a 7-3 deficit to a 17-7 lead.  

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1988 Sunkist Fiesta Bowl
NU 28 - FSU 31

Tempe, AZ - Jan 1, 1988.   Florida State QB Danny McManus hit flanker Ronald Lewis with a 15-yard, fourth-down TD pass with 3:07 left in the game to give FSU a 31-28 win over Nebraska in the 17th Fiesta Bowl.  McManus' third touchdown pass of the afternoon capped a 97-yard touchdown drive by the Seminoles, who had taken over at their 3-yard line with 6:58 to go when a fumble kept the Huskers from putting the game away.
      It was a frustrating day for Nebraska, which jumped to a 14-0 first-quarter lead on a short drive set up by a Richard Bell punt return, and a 52-yard punt return touchdown by Dana Brinson.  The Husker defense held FSU to just 82 yards on the ground, 28 yards by standout tailback Sammie Smith.  Nut McManus threw for 375 yards, his career high by 100 yards.   He was named the offensive player of the game, while Husker DT Neil Smith earned defensive player honors.
     Even after FSU took the late lead, the Huskers almost rallied, but Steve Taylor's 58-yard pass to Morgan Gregory, advanced to the Seminole 2-yard line, was called back because of a penalty.

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1989 Orange Bowl
NU 3 - Miami 23
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Miami, FL - Jan. 1, 1989.   Second-ranked Miami's quickness, particularly on defense, proved to be too much for sixth-ranked Nebraska as the Hurricanes dominated the Huskers, 23-3, in the 55th Orange Bowl Classic.  Despite the win and a final 11-1 record, the Hurricanes were unable to lay claim to a second straight national title because of undefeated Notre Dame's 34-21 Fiesta Bowl win over West Virginia earlier in the day.
     Although the Blackshirts held the Miami offense to 354 total yards, nearly 100 yards less than its season average, the Huskers never could get untracked against the Hurricanes' send-ranked defense.  After leading the nation in rushing at 382.3 yards per game during the regular season, NU managed only 80 rushing yards against Miami and finished with 10 first downs.  NU needed a career-long 50-yard FG by Gregg Barrios to capitalize on its only serious scoring threat.  Early in the third quarter, Tahaun Lewis picked off a Steve Walsh pass and returned it 31 yards to the Miami 37.  After Ken Clark gained 16 yards to the 21-yard line, Steve Taylor was sacked for a 13-yard loss.  The Huskers had to settle for Barrios' FG, which prevented NU's first shutout since 1973.
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1990 Sunkist Fiesta Bowl
NU 17 - FSU 41

Tempe, AZ - Jan. 1, 1990.   Fifth-ranked Florida State rode the arm of QB Peter Tom Willis and the talents of a bevy of quick, talented receivers to a 41-17 win over sixth-ranked NU in the 19th Sunkist Fiesta Bowl.  The Huskers had the lead twice in the first half, 7-0 after driving 69 yards for a touchdown on their first possession, helped by a 41-yard Mike Stigge to Mark Dowse pass on a fake punt, and 10-7 on a Chris Drennan field goal early in the second period.  

     From then on, it was all FSU.  The Seminoles scored touchdowns on five of their next seven possessions to build a commanding 41-10 lead at the end of three quarters.  In the process, Willis had the best passing day ever against Nebraska, completing 25 of 40 passes for 422 yards and five touchdowns.  The yardage topped the previous high vs. the Huskers of 375 by the Seminoles' Danny McMannus in the 1988 Sunkist Fiesta Bowl, and the five TD passes were the most-ever against NU. 
     For the second straight year, the Huskers faced a bowl opponent that was probably the best team in the nation, but had virtually no hope of winning the national title because of untimely defeats early in the season.  FSU lost its first two games in 1989 to Southern Mississippi and Clemson, then roared back to win its last 10, including 24-10 over eventual No. 1 Miami of Florida.

1991 Florida Citrus Bowl
NU 21 - GA Tech 45
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Orlando, FL - Jan 1, 1991.  Despite a second-quarter rally, Nebraska was unable to overcome a 21-0 deficit as the Huskers fell to undefeated Georgia Tech, 45-21, in the Florida Citrus Bowl.  The Yellow Jackets finished 11-0-1 with the victory and edged Colorado for the UPI national title, while the Buffaloes, who had beaten NU 27-12 in November, claimed the AP crown.
     Two freshmen gave Husker fans a ray of hope after Tech took its three TD lead.  All-Big Eight TE Johnny Mitchell hauled in a 30-yard TD pass from Tom Haase, then IB Derek Brown sprinted 50 yards to cut the margin to 21-14 with 5:07 left in the half.  But that was as close as NU would get, and running back William Bell's two fourth-quarter TDs sealed the Huskers' fate.
     Mitchell finished the game with five receptions for an NU bowl record 138 yards, while Brown rushed for 99 yards, and Haase came off the bench to complete 14 of 21 passes for 209 yards and two TDs.

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1992 Federal Express Orange Bowl
NU 0 - Miami 22
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1992.  No. 1 ranked Miami, playing on its home field for at least a share of its fourth national title in nine years, used overwhelming team speed and a smothering defense to blank Nebraska, 22-0.  It was the Cornhuskers' first shutout defeat in 221 games since the 1973 season.
     The win left the Hurricanes 12-0 on the season and (as it turned out) with a split national title with a 12-0 Washington team that beat Nebraska, 36-21, at Lincoln in September.  The Hurricanes were No. 1 in the Associated Press poll, while the Huskies claimed the top spot in the USA Today/CNN Coaches poll.  It was the second straight year for a split tile, and , for the second straight year, Nebraska, 9-2-1, lost to both teams involved, having been defeated by Colorado and Georgia Tech the season before. 
     Miami held Nebraska to 82 rushing yards after the Huskers had won the NCAA rushing title in the regular season at 353.2 yards per game.

Photo courtesy Rich Altman of Hollywood Collectibles

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1993 Federal Express Orange Bowl
NU 14 - FSU 27

Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1993.  The Seminoles struck first in the opening quarter and scored 20 unanswered points before split end Corey Dixon caught a 41-yard bomb from NU QB Tommie Frazier with 1:31 remaining in the first half.  NU had missed two FGs in the half, while FSU was good on two attempts.
     After NU stalled on it's first possession of the second half, FSU made good on an 85-yard drive to go up 27-7.  The Blackshirts went on to shut FSU's offense down and hold them to just 102 total yards from that point, forcing them to punt five times.  Frazier connected with Gerald Armstrong on a 1-yard pass with 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter to pull within 13, but then threw two interceptions as No. 3 FSU held on for a 27-14 victory.
     The No. 11 Huskers were slowed by five fumbles and turned the ball over three times after leading the nation in turnover margin during the regular season.  The Huskers were limited to 144 yards rushing after leading the nation during the regular season.  NU dropped to 9-3 on the season and finished 14th in the final polls, its 24th consecutive year in the AP top 25 to that point.  FSU improved to 11-1 and finished No. 2 behind Alabama.

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1994 Federal Express Orange Bowl
NU 16 - FSU 18
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Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1994.   In a wild last-minute ending, the top-ranked Huskers finished just shy of claiming Coach Tom Osborne's first national title in the Orange Bowl to No. 2 Florida State.
     After Scott Bentley kicked a 22-yard field goal with 21 seconds remaining, the Huskers returned the Florida State kickoff to the NU 45 with 15 seconds remaining.  Tommie Frazier fired a second-down pass to Trumane Bell, who raced 29 yards to the FSU 28-yard line.  Bell was tackled and called timeout whit one second remaining; however, the clock expired and Florida State fans and players stormed the field to celebrate a then-premature national championship.  A second was put back on the clock, but Byron Bennet's 45-yard field goal attempt was wide left.

This was, however, motivation for the "Unfinished Business" theme of 1994!

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1995 Federal Express Orange Bowl
NU 24 - Miami 17
Miami, FL - Jan 1, 1995.   After suffering three Orange Bowl defeats to Miami in the previous 10 years, the Huskers enacted big-time revenge against the Hurricanes in a 24-17 come-from-behind national championship win on Jan. 1, 1995.
     Entering the game as the nation's top-ranked team, the Huskers fell behind No. 3 Miami, 10-0, after the first quarter.  Nebraska finally scored on a 19-yard pass from quarterback Brook Berringer to tight end Mark Gilman to pull within 10-7 with 7:24 left before halftime.
     Miami increased the lead to 10 points in the third quarter when Jonathan Harris scored on a 44-yard pass from Frank Costa.  The Huskers pulled within 17-9 when Dwayne Harris drilled Costa in the Hurricane end zone for a safety.  Nebraska battled back to tie the game at 17 with a Cory Schlesinger 15-yard touchdown run and the Huskers completed a two-point conversion pass form Tommie Frazier to Eric Alford.
     On the Huskers ensuing possession, Nebraska started it's drive to the national title at it's own 42 with 6:28 left in the game.  On a key third-and-four play, Frazier scrambled 25 yards to the Miami 27.  Three plays later, Schlesinger rumbled 14 yards up the middle for the game-winning touchdown.  "I don't feel any different or any more vindicated than when we played here last year," Osborne said.

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1996 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
NU 62 - Florida 24
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Tempe, AZ - Jan 3, 1996.    In what was supposed to be a battle of the best two teams in college football, the Huskers hammered Florida, 62-24, to win their second consecutive national title.  Entering the contest, the Huskers and Gators were the nation's only unbeaten teams.   Florida jumped out to a 10-6 advantage after the first quarter, but in the second, the Huskers, who had the nation's best offensive attack, came alive.
     Nebraska scored 29 points in the 15-minute frame.  Thirty-two seconds into the quarter, Lawrence Phillips began the scoring barrage with a 42-yard run.  The Husker defense contributed to the 29-point outburst on two occasions.  Jamel Williams sacked All-American quarterback Danny Wuerffel for a safety and Michael Booker returned an errant Wuerffel pass 42 yards for a touchdown.  Kris Brown added two field goals and Ahman Green scored on a one-yard run to highlight the scoring explosion.
     In the third quarter, Tommie Frazier scampered 35 yards for a touchdown and had a highlight reel 75-yard run where he escaped the grasp of eight would-be tacklers.  Phillips scored on a 15-yard run to complete the 62-point offensive effort and deliver the Huskers their second straight national title.

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1996 FedEx Orange Bowl
NU 41 - Va Tech 21
Miami, FL - Dec 31, 1996.    No. 6 Nebraska faced No. 10 Virginia Tech in the 63d annual Orange Bowl, played for the first time in Pro Player Stadium, not the Orange Bowl.
     Va Tech got out to an early 7-0 lead, as QB Jim Druckenmiller hit Marcus Parker on a 19-yard pass with 4:06 left in the first quarter.  The first two Husker drives ended in punts, until Kris Brown made it 7-3 with a field goal early in the second quarter.  After scoring two more touchdowns and yielding one to the Hokies, the Huskers led 17-14 at the half.
     Then, the proverbial flood gates opened, as the Huskers went on to score 24 points, while allowing the Hokies only one more touchdown to win 41-21.  The Huskers out-rushed the Hokies 288-219 yards, led by Benning (95), Frost (62), Green (52) and Sims (48), while Ken Oxendine gained 150 on 20 carries for Va Tech.
    Though not a title game this time, it again set the tone for another great season and drive for a third National Championship in four years the following season.

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1998 FedEx Orange Bowl
NU 42 - Tennessee 17
Miami, FL - Jan 2, 1998.  In Tom Osborne's finale, the Huskers manhandled No. 3 Tennessee, 42-17, and earned a share of the national title.  For the third time in four seasons, Nebraska earned a piece of the national championship.  Although Michigan defeated Washington State in the Rose Bowl a day earlier, the Huskers still had a chance to get a share of the national title.
     The Huskers drew first blood on a one-yard run by Ahman Green late in the first quarter.  After Green's score, Nebraska never trailed the Volunteers.
     Leading 14-3 at halftime, the Huskers turned things up by scoring 21 points in the third quarter.  Quarterback Scott Frost scored on a 1-yard carry and six minutes later, he scored from 11 yards out, putting the Huskers up 28-3.  Tennessee scored its first touchdown of the game to trim the lead to 28-9 before Green scored his second touchdown of the game on a 22-yard run.  Green finished the game with an Orange Bowl record 206 yards on 29 carries. In the fourth, Frost added his third touchdown of the game on a nine-yard option keeper with 4:24 remaining.
     Following the game at the team hotel, the Huskers were informed at 2:30 a.m. they had moved from second to first in the coaches poll and earned a share of the national title with Michigan, who finished first in the Associated Press poll.  Nebraska edged the Wolverines by four points in the coaches poll to earn its third national title in four seasons and sent Osborne out as a national champion. 
1998 Culligan Holiday Bowl
NU 20 - Arizona 23
Thanks to Scott Shelburne for the scan.
San Diego, CA - Dec 30, 1998.  Kelvin Eafon's 1-yard TD run with six minutes remaining lifted fifth-ranked Arizona to a 23-20 victory over No. 14 Nebraska in the 1998 Culligan Holiday Bowl, ending the Huskers' four-game bowl winning streak.
     The Blackshirts forced a pair of turnovers, leading to 13 unanswered points, as NU took a 13-9 halftime lead.  Loran Kaiser's fumble recovery set up a 25-yard FG by Kris Brown, cutting the Wildcat lead to 9-3.  On the Huskers' next possession, Crouch found WB Shevin Wiggins for a 44-yard TD that gave the Huskers a 10-9 lead.  On the ensuing kickoff, Billy Legate forced a Wildcat fumble deep in UA territory, leading to Brown's second FG of the half as time expired.
     In a wild fourth quarter that saw three lead changes, the Huskers rallied from a 16-13 deficit as QB Eric Crouch connected with TE Tracey Wistrom for a 4-yard TD to give the Huskers a 20-16 lead with 10:55 remaining. 
     Arizona came right back on its next possession, driving 68 yards on nine plays.  UA QB Keith Smith kept the Wildcats' drive alive, rushing for a pair of first downs to set up Eafon's go-ahead TD.  NU had a final opportunity to regain the lead, driving to the UA 46 before Chris McAlister's second interception of the game sealed the win for Arizona.

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2000 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
NU 31 - Tennessee 21
Tempe, AZ - Jan 2, 2000.  Nebraska recorded its fifth victory in the last six bowl games, defeating No. 6/5 Tennessee 31-21.  The Huskers finished the season with a 12-1 record ranked 2/3 in the AP and Coaches Poll.  The Huskers started quickly, scoring on a Dan Alexander 7-yard touchdown run on NU's first drive and increased the lead to 14-0 on a 60-yard punt return by Bobby Newcome late in the 1st quarter.  The Huskers took a 17-0 lead on a Josh Brown 31-yard FG before a UT TD in the final seconds of the half gave the Huskers a 17-7 halftime lead.
     The Vols closed to 17-14 early in the third quarter, but the Huskers responded, marching 96 yards in nine plays.  After Crouch found TE John Bowling for a 17-yard catch on third down, FB Willie Miller set up the Husker touchdown with a career-long 47-yard run to the UT 13-yard line.  Crouch connected with TE Aaron Golliday on the next play for a 13-yard TD pass, making it 24-14.  Crouch earned offensive MVP honors, completing 9/15 passes for 148 yards and a TD, rushing for 63 yards on 17 carries. 
     NU put the game out of reach with a 10-play, 99-yard drive capped by Correll Buckhalter's 2-yard TD run, giving the Huskers a 31-14 lead.  The Vols would close to within 31-21 midway through the 4th quarter, but the Huskers ran out the final 7:25 on their next possession.  Alexander led Nebraska's ground game with 108 yards, as the Huskers finished the game with 321 yards against the nation's 7th-best rush defense. In Defensive Coordinator Charlie McBride's  final game for NU, the Blackshirts held the Vols to just 44 yds rushing and forced 2 interceptions. All-America CB Ralph Brown and LB Carlos Polk led NU with eight tackles each.

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2000 Sylvania Alamo Bowl
NU 66 - Northwestern 27

San Antonio, TX - Dec 30,  2000.  In the most lopsided victory in San Antonio since Santa Anna's troops versus Davey Crockett and company, the Nebraska Cornhuskers manhandled the Northwestern Wildcats in the Alamo Bowl and came out with a decisive 66-17 victory. The Husker point total was the most ever scored by a team in a bowl game. Their point total was just five points shy of the Alamo Bowl record for combined score.
     Nebraska piled up 544 yards of total offense including 384 yards rushing. They set a team record by scoring 31 points in the second period. They followed that up with another 21 in the third. The Huskers had six scoring drives of three plays or less.
     Quarterback Eric Crouch ran for 90 yards and two touchdowns and threw for 91 yards and one touchdown. Wingback Bobby Newcombe got into the passing action with a 69-yard third quarter touchdown pass to Matt Davison off a pitch from Crouch.
     Star Northwestern running back Damien Anderson rushed for 149 yards, most of those coming on two plays, a 69-yard TD run and a 57 yard run in the third quarter.   QB Zak Kustok rushed for 55 yards and completed 15 of 35 attempts for 138 yards.

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2002 Rose Bowl
NU 14 - Miami 37

Pasadena, CA - Jan 3,  2002.  Early mistakes and a Miami offense that was able to almost score at will crushed the Nebraska Cornhuskers hopes of their sixth national title.  Nebraska's Eric Crouch rushed for 114 and completed 5 of 15 passes for 62 yards. Nebraska was able to put together two scoring drives in the second half.  Fullback Judd Davies capped a 68 yard drive with a 16 yard touchdown run. 

     Nebraska's biggest thrill came on the second play of the fourth quarter when DeJuan Groce fielded a Miami punt at the 27, broke a tackle and raced 72 yards for a touchdown to make the score 34-14.  Miami had 321 yards of total offense in the first half, 260 of those coming through the air. Nebraska was held to 119 yards. Things settled down a bit for the Husker defense in the second half. A 37 yard field goal by Todd Sievers with 10:04 to go made the score 37-14. Miami's defense proved too much for the Nebraska offense. Nebraska entered the game averaging 315 yards per game. In the Rose Bowl they produced just 258.

     A crowd of 93,781 filled the Rose Bowl, most of them Husker fans. The crowd marked the largest ever to watch a Husker game, eclipsing the previous mark set in the Rose Bowl back in 1941 when 92,000 attended.

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2002 Independence Bowl
NU 23 - Mississippi 27

Shreveport, LA - Dec 27,  2002.   Nebraska's DeJuan Groce tied an NCAA record with his fourth punt return touchdown of the season, but the Huskers saw their season end with a disappointing 27-23 loss to Ole Miss in the 2002 MainStay Independence Bowl. 

     Nebraska jumped to a 10-0 lead in the game's first 17 minutes, as Josh Brown connected on a 29-yard field goal in the first quarter to open the scoring before Jammal Lord found freshman tight end Matt Herian for a 41-yard scoring strike 1:22 into the second quarter. 

     Ole Miss quarterback Eli Manning cut the Huskers' lead to 10-7 with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Kerry Johnson midway through the second quarter before Groce, who ranked third nationally in punt returns at 18.0 ypr, broke his sixth career punt return for a score to put the Huskers up by 10.  In the second half, the team's exchanged field goals before Sanford's second 1-yard scoring run gave the Rebels a 24-20 advantage. Sanford had only four yards on three carries, but scored twice for Ole Miss, which finished 7-6.

     The Huskers, making their NCAA record 34th consecutive bowl appearance, now are 20-21 all-time in bowls, while Ole Miss became the first Southeastern Conference team to down NU in a bowl game since Alabama did it twice in the mid-1960s. Nebraska had won its previous 11 bowl games against SEC teams dating back to the 1969 Sun Bowl.  

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2003 Alamo Bowl
NU 17 - Michigan State 3

San Antonio, TX - Dec 29,  2003.   Behind a stifling defensive performance and a record-setting day by sophomore I-back Cory Ross, No. 22 Nebraska picked up its 10th victory of the year with a 17-3 victory over Michigan State in the 2003 Alamo Bowl.

     The Husker Blackshirts recorded five sacks and intercepted three passes in holding the Spartans to three points, equaling the lowest point total by a Husker bowl opponent in 42 bowl games.   Nebraska held MSU without a touchdown and allowed just 174 total yards, over 200 yards below its season average, as the Huskers harassed Smoker the entire game.

     While the Blackshirts kept MSU in check, Ross provided most of the offensive damage, rushing for a career-high 138 yards and two touchdowns on a school-record 37 carries. Ross scored on touchdown runs of 2 and 6 yards, as NU built a 14-point halftime lead.

     While Ross accounted for 138 of NUís 229 yards on the ground, offensive MVP Jammal Lord was solid through the air, completing 8-of-17 passes for 160 yards, as he out-threw Spartan quarterback Jeff Smoker, who was 21-of-39 for just 156 yards.

     The Husker defense forced its first turnover as Daniel Bullocks intercepted and returned it to the NU 35. The Huskers quickly took advantage as Lord found Isaiah Fluellen for a 58-yard pass deep in MSU territory. Ross then scored two plays later, giving the Huskers a 10-3 lead. 

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2005 Alamo Bowl
NU 32 - Michigan 28

San Antonio, TX - Dec 28,  2005.   Time and time again Nebraska quarterback Zac Taylor was knocked to the turf by Michigan defenders, time and time again Taylor would get back up for more. Thatís just the way the rest of his team responded as the Nebraska Cornhuskers erased an 11-point fourth quarter deficit to defeat the Wolverines 32-28.

     Nebraska found themselves in a 28-17 hole with 11:40 left in the game when UM quarterback Chad Henne ran the ball in from seen yards out. The two teams traded short drives before a 28 yard punt return by Cortney Grixby set the Huskers up at the Michigan 38. I-Back Cory Ross provided all the yardage necessary on the next two plays, including a 31-yard touchdown run. A two-point conversion pulled the Huskers to within three points.

     Nebraskaís defense forced fumbles on Michiganís next two drives but was only able to capitalize on the second one that gave NU a short field at the Michigan 17. Nebraska scored the game winning touchdown on a 13-yard pass from Taylor to Terrence Nunn with 4:23 left in the game.  

     Michigan finished with 270 yards passing and 130 yards rushing, while NU achieved solid balance with 167 yards passing and 151 yards rushing for 318 total yards.

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2007 Cotton Bowl
NU 14 - Auburn 17

Dallas, TX - Jan 1, 2007.   In a classic defensive struggle, No. 10 Auburn managed the only points of the second half on a 42-yard John Vaughn field goal in the third quarter to defeat No. 22 Nebraska, 17-14, in the 2007 AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic on New Year's Day.

     The Huskers fell to the Tigers despite surrendering just 178 total yards, with both Auburn touchdowns coming in the first half on drives of less than 15 yards following NU turnovers. Nebraska generated 230 yards of total offense, 126 yards passing and 104 yards rushing.

     Sophomore I-back Marlon Lucky led the NU offense with 88 yards rushing on 25 carries, while adding a team-leading six receptions for 67 yards to account for 155 of NU's 230 yards. Brandon Jackson added seven carries for 38 yards and a score to help the Huskers, while Taylor finished the day by completing 14-of-26 passes for 126 yards and one touchdown, with one interception.

     Although the score was tied at 14 at the half, Nebraska dominated the statistics. The Huskers amassed 157 yards of total offense in the opening half, including 66 yards rushing and 91 yards passing, while maintaining possession for 19:03. The Huskers produced 12 first downs, while surrendering just three to the Tigers. Auburn had just 25 yards rushing and 21 yards passing for 46 total yards in the first half.

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2009 Gator Bowl
NU 26 - Clemson 21

Jacksonville, FL  - Jan 1, 2009.   Nebraska scored on four consecutive third-quarter possessions to rally from an 11-point halftime deficit and the Blackshirts capped a dominating effort with a late defensive stand, as the Huskers came back for a 26-21 victory over Clemson in the 64th annual Gator Bowl at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium on New Year's Day.

     The Huskers were poised for the comeback thanks to an outstanding effort from the Blackshirts. Nebraska held Clemson to just 210 yards, including only four yards rushing. All 21 Clemson points came off Husker turnovers, while NU forced two Tiger turnovers that led to six important points in the five-point win.

     Clemson made one final drive in the closing minutes, marching from its own 23 all the way down to the NU 10. With a 1st-and-goal opportunity, the Tigers were sacked for a loss of 16 yards and threw three incompletions to seal the victory.

     With the victory, Nebraska finished 9-4 under first-year head coach Bo Pelini. Pelini, who is now 2-0 in bowl games as Husker head coach, joined Bob Devaney, Tom Osborne and Frank Solich as the only coaches in Nebraska history to post nine victories in their first season. Pelini's 9-4 record also tied for the best mark among 2008 first-year head coaches and was the best of any first-time head coach.

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2009 Holiday Bowl
NU 33 - Arizona 0

San Diego, CA  - Dec 30, 2009.  In one of Nebraska's most dominant bowl performances in its illustrious bowl history, the No. 20 Cornhuskers registered their first-ever bowl shutout with a 33-0 whitewashing of Arizona in the 2009 Pacific Life Holiday Bowl in Qualcomm Stadium.
     Nebraska's 33-point victory margin was its largest in a bowl game since a 49-point win (66-17) over Northwestern in the 2000 Alamo Bowl. It also challenged a 39-point (45-6) win over Georgia in the 1969 Sun Bowl, a 38-point win over Florida in the 1996 Fiesta Bowl and a 34-point victory (40-6) over Notre Dame in the 1973 Orange Bowl.

     Led by All-American defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and Holiday Bowl Defensive MVP Matt O'Hanlon, the performance of Nebraska's Blackshirts was near perfection, surrendering just 109 total offense yards. Arizona managed just 63 rushing yards, 46 yards passing and six first downs.

     An efficient and balanced offense finished with 396 total yards, 223 rushing and 173 passing. NU rolled up 22 first downs, while surrendering just six to the Wildcats, with three of those on the final drive. The Huskers also won the time of possession battle by an overwhelming margin, 38:12 to 21:48.

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2010 Holiday Bowl
NU 7 - Washington 19

San Diego, CA  - Dec 30, 2010.  Nebraska struggled to find its offensive rhythm against an inspired Washington defense in a 19-7 loss to the Huskies in the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl at Qualcomm Stadium on Thursday night.

     Washington jumped out to a 10-0 first quarter lead after an early NU miscue on its first drive of the game. The Huskers had put together an eight-play drive that crossed into UW territory when Victor Aiyewa forced a Rex Burkhead fumble. Ta'amu Alameda recovered the ball and returned it 14 yards to the Nebraska 21-yard line. Washington took advantage of the Husker turnover with a three-play drive, capped by Chris Polk's three-yard touchdown run to give the Huskies a 7-0 lead.

     The Huskers went to the locker room trailing 10-7 at the half, but were unable to mount any serious scoring threats in the second half. NU managed just 156 total yards in the game, after rolling up 533 yards in the first meeting with the Huskies this season in Seattle. On Thursday night, NU managed just 91 rushing yards as a team, led by Burkhead's 39 yards on 12 carries and Helu's 34 yards on 11 carries. Helu closed his career as NU's No. 4 all-time leading rusher with 3,404 yards, including 1,245 this season.

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2012 Captial One Bowl
NU 13 - South Carolina 30

Orlando, FL - Jan 2, 2012.  No. 20 Nebraska jumped to a 13-9 lead at the end of the first quarter, but No. 9 South Carolina scored the game's final 21 points in the Huskers' 30-13 loss in the Capital One Bowl Monday at Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium.

     In a game filled with big plays and missed opportunities, Nebraska struck first when sophomore quarterback Taylor Martinez hit freshman wide receiver Kenny Bell on a 30-yard touchdown strike just over three minutes into the game. It was Bell's third touchdown catch of the season and gave NU a quick 6-0 lead with 11:58 left in the first quarter.

     However, Brett Maher's extra-point attempt was blocked and scooped up by South Carolina's Stephon Gilmore, who raced all the way to the end zone for a two-point return. The block ended a streak of 159 consecutive PATs for the Huskers, and the return was the first against Nebraska since Colorado's Greg Biekert accomplished the rare feat in Boulder in 1991.

     Burkhead led all rushers with 89 yards on 23 carries, including 71 yards on 15 carries in the first half alone. Martinez added 16 carries for 37 yards, but was knocked back for 45 yards in losses while being sacked six times. Burkhead was also NU's leading receiver with 35 yards on five catches, while Bell added three catches for 53 yards.

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2013 Captial One Bowl
NU 31 - Georgia 45

Orlando, FL - Jan 1, 2013.  (Huskers.com) Aaron Murray threw five touchdown passes to set a Georgia bowl record, including two in the fourth quarter, as the Bulldogs (No. 7 BCS, No. 6 AP) beat Nebraska (No. 16 BCS, No. 23 AP) 45-31 in the Capital One Bowl on Tuesday.

     Nebraska (10-4) lost its third consecutive bowl game, and finished the season with two straight woeful defensive performances. The Cornhuskers led 24-23 at the half, but committed two of their three turnovers in the final 30 minutes.

     After a one-yard dive by Ameer Abdullah and a tack-on 11-yard facemask penalty by the Bulldogs, Martinez found Burkhead wide open down the middle for the go-ahead touchdown. Maher's extra point sent the Huskers to halftime with a 24-23 lead.

     Nebraska started the second half with the ball. Burkhead carried six times for 18 yards on the march, including a two-yard plunge for paydirt to give NU a 31-23 edge with 9:36 left in the third quarter. Martinez also carried three times for 16 yards on the drive, while completing two passes for 17 yards to Bell, who finished with four catches for 60 yards on the day.

      The two defenses took control for the remainder of the third quarter, before Georgia produced the game's two decisive touchdown passes in the final 15 minutes.

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2014 Gator Bowl
NU 24 - Georgia 19

 

Jacksonville, FL - Jan 1, 2014.  (AP) Tommy Armstrong Jr. connected with Quincy Enunwa for two touchdowns, including a 99-yarder in the third quarter, and Nebraska held on to beat No. 23 Georgia 24-19 in the rain-soaked Gator Bowl. Playing in their 50th bowl, the Cornhuskers (9-4) ended a four-game losing streak against teams from the SEC. The streak included a 45-31 loss to Georgia in the Capital One Bowl last season. The rematch was much different.

     Nebraska did a solid job against running back Todd Gurley, who ran for 125 yards and a TD last year. Gurley finished with 86 yards on the ground, but caught seven passes for 97 yards and a TD. His 25-yard TD on the first play of the fourth quarter cut Nebraska's lead to 24-19. But the Huskers stopped Georgia (8-5) twice in the red zone on fourth down in the closing minutes.  

     The Huskers pulled ahead 24-12 late in the third on the longest play in Gator Bowl history. Armstrong dropped back on a third-and-14 play at the 1 and heaved the ball as far as he could to Enunwa, who was streaking wide open down the left sideline. Enunwa coasted the rest of the way, and finished with four receptions for 129 yards. He also broke a school with 12 touchdown receptions, eclipsing the mark of 11 set by Johnny Rodgers in 1971. 

     Armstrong, filling in for injured starter Taylor Martinez, completed 6 of 14 passes for 163 yards. He also had a 5-yard TD pass to Enunwa in the second quarter.  Ameer Abdullah ran 27 times for 122 yards and a score. It was his 11th 100-yard game of the season.  Nebraska finished with 307 yards, 109 fewer than Georgia.  

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2014 Holiday Bowl
NU 42 - USC 45

  

San Diego, CA  - Dec 27, 2014.  In a high-scoring shootout between two of college football's most storied programs, Tommy Armstrong Jr. racked up 422 yards of total offense, but Nebraska came up short on its final two drives of the fourth quarter in a 45-42 loss to No. 24 USC in the National University Holiday Bowl on Saturday night at Qualcomm Stadium. Both teams finished their seasons with 9-4 records, while teaming up for 1,040 yards of total offense in the game. Nebraska finished with 525 total yards, including 379 passing and 146 rushing, while the Trojans managed 515 yards, including 321 through the air and 194 on the ground.

     Although Nebraska led at the end of the first quarter, the second quarter belonged to the Trojans, who put together a pair of long touchdown drives to take a 24-17 lead to the locker room at halftime. USC pushed its lead to two scores for the first time early in the third quarter when the Trojans' Cody Kessler hit Jackson on a 71-yard touchdown strike to put USC up 31-17 with 12:01 left in the quarter.

    But Nebraska showed its fight, answering with a touchdown drive of its own capped by a 20-yard run from senior I-back Ameer Abdullah to make it 31-24 with 9:41 left in the third quarter. Abdullah finished his career as Nebraska's all-time all-purpose yardage leader, rushing 27 times for 88 yards and a score. He added six catches for 61 yards and three kickoff returns for 120 yards including a 49-yarder to finish with 269 all-purpose yards in the game.  Abdullah finished his career No. 11 on the NCAA all-purpose yardage list with 7,168, while closing his illustrious career at No. 2 on the Nebraska rushing list with 4,588 yards.

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2015 Foster Farms Bowl
NU 37 - UCLA 29

  

Santa Clara, CA  - Dec 26, 2015.  Nebraska made the most of its unlikely postseason invitation on Saturday night, rallying from a 21-7 first-half deficit to beat UCLA 37-29 in the Foster Farms Bowl. The Huskers rattled off 30 straight points behind a punishing run game and a defense that clamped down despite the ejection of safety Nate Gerry ó their leading tackler and a co-captain just before halftime.

     Nebraska put up the final 14 points of the first half, then forged ahead by scoring on its first three possessions after the break, predominantly on the strength of a running game that produced more than 300 rushing yards for the first time this season.The go-ahead drive was a nine-play, 78-yard series coming out of halftime. The touchdown came on a 22-yard pass from Tommy Armstrong to freshman Stanley Morgan, and the Huskersí first lead was 27-21 when Drew Brown missed the extra point.

     After the Bruins (8-5) gave the Huskers a fresh set of downs with a pass-interference penalty, Armstrong scored on a 3-yard run on third down to make it 37-21 with 14:11 left in the game.UCLA got back a touchdown on a 9-yard pass from Josh Rosen to Jordan Payton, and Rosen added the two-point conversion to make it 37-29.

     But after getting it down to a one-score game, the Bruinsí attempts to get any closer failed with a missed field goal by Lou Groza Award winner Kaíimi Fairbairn and a Rosen fourth-down throw that was intercepted in the end zone by Chris Jones with 2:54 remaining.  Nebraska then was able to get two first downs, run out the clock and celebrate on the Foster Farms Bowl midfield logo.  (Omaha World-Herald) 

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2016 Music City Bowl
NU 24 - UCLA 38

  

Nashville, TN  - Dec 30, 2016.  Nebraska fell behind 14-0 midway through the first half and was not able to recover in a 38-24 loss to Tennessee in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl on Friday afternoon at Nissan Stadium.

     Tennessee quarterback Josh Dobbs completed 23-of-38 passes for 291 yards and a touchdown, while adding 11 carries for 118 yards and a Music City Bowl-record three rushing touchdowns. Dobbs finished with 409 total yards and four scores.

     Nebraska's Ryker Fyfe, who drew the start in place of injured four-year starting quarterback Tommie Armstrong Jr. for the Huskers, answered with 243 yards on 17-of-36 passing. Fyfe threw a pair of touchdowns to senior receiver Brandon Reilly, who finished with four catches for 98 yards. Fyfe added a nine-yard touchdown run, but was harassed by Tennessee defensive end Derek Barnett, who broke the Vols' career sack record previously held by the legendary Reggie White. Barnett notched a nine-yard sack late in the fourth quarter to help seal the win for the Vols. Barnett, who closed his career with 33 all-time sacks, finished the game with six tackles and four quarterback hurries. As a team, Tennessee notched four sacks for 36 yards in the game.  

     Nebraska, which got a strong effort from running back Devine Ozigbo who finished with seven carries for 66 yards, managed just 61 rushing yards as a team on 28 carries. Overall, the Huskers produced 318 yards of total offense, while Tennesse piled up 521 total yards, including 230 rushing yards on 38 carries.  (Huskers.com) 

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