Nebraska: 35 Oregon: 32
Offensive Player of the Game:
The senior quarterback played, as wide receiver Jordan Westerkamp put it, “out of his mind,” against the No. 22 Ducks. Armstrong Jr. finished the day with 200 yards on the air and three touchdowns, connecting 17 times in 33 attempts. The Texas native also battled through cramps and gained 95 yards on the ground, including the game-winning 34-yard touchdown.
Defensive Player of the Game:
Now healthy, the senior linebacker is able to take his play to the next level. Rose-Ivy had five tackles on the day, one being the game-clinching stop on quarterback Dakota Prukop. The Kansas City native brings a spark that ignites the defense’s energy, which was evident in today’s win.
The Moment It Was Over: An obvious one, but when Tommy Armstrong Jr. punched in the game-winning 34-yard touchdown to put the Huskers ahead 35-32. The senior’s score left 2:29 remaining on the clock in the 4th quarter and it was enough give Nebraska the win.
Quote to Note: "I was just tremendously excited for everybody in the state, and I think that everybody in the state must have been in the stadium. It felt like it today. It was beautiful. What a great, great picture of college football today - that stadium and both teams playing like that. That had to be a remarkable scene for the people that could sit and enjoy it.” –Nebraska Head Coach Mike Riley
What A Nebraska Win Means: Nebraska’s win improves their undefeated record to 3-0. The Huskers also took down a top 25 team, putting themselves back into national recognition of a legitimate team and program.
* First half versus second half rushing. Nebraska’s rushing attack was a tale of two halves. In the first half, the Ducks snuffed out Nebraska’s plan to run the ball, as they held theHuskers to just 62 yards on the ground in 18 attempts. The Huskers turned on the light switch in the second half and ended the game with 228 yards. Devine Ozigbo was a huge factor in the second half, setting up the first two drives with his legs, as he ended the game with 95 yards total, 89 of them coming in the second half.
* Oregon’s 2-point conversions could have been the reason for dropping this one. The Ducks went just one for five on their two-point conversions, and they lost the game by three points. You do the math.
* Nebraska had trouble holding onto the football yet again this week. They had three fumbles on the day, but were fortunate to only lose one. The one that hurt them the most was towards the end of the first half in a backwards pass that Oregon recovered to set up a touchdown drive. The other two came from De’Mornay Pierson-El and freshman running back Tre Bryant.
* Who doesn't love a good walk-on story? More than a few fans likely googled his name after this catch.
* Penalties make another appearance on this list, but for a different reason. Nebraska came into today with 14 penalties. They ended the game with seven, right on pace, but their foe finished with 13 for a total 126 yards. Nebraska only had one late hit come against a punt in the second half. Seven is still a lot but it’s a start.
* The Huskers defense allowed way too many conversions on third and long. Oregon finished the game just five of 14 on third downs, but when they converted, it was usually for a big gain. One instance in particular that stood out was in the 3rd quarter when Oregon converted a 41-yard touchdown run on a 3rd and 26.
* After beating No. 22 Oregon today, Mike Riley now has 16 wins over ranked opponents. Last year, he took down No. 7 Michigan State at home and now the No. 22 Ducks. The Huskers will likely face at least one more ranked opponent this year in Ohio State, so it will be interesting to see if Riley can build on that number.
* Jordan Westerkamp’s record year continues as his two touchdowns on the day puts him at fourth in school history with 17 career touchdowns. The senior captain also moved to fourth in career receptions with 137, passing both Marlon Lucky and Terrence Nunn.
* Nebraska’s defense showed signs of both good and bad. The blackshirts were not up to par in the turnover margin as they did not have any takeaways today. They also gave up 336 yards on the ground and 482 total. The Huskers’ defense did step up when they needed to and had a handful of three-and-out’s, as well as two sacks.
· * De’Mornay Pierson-El is back. Sort of. Pierson-El gave Nebraska the shot in the arm they desperately needed towards the end of the first half when he returned a punt for 42 yards to set up a touchdown. He also bobbled a punt and had just one catch on the day. It’s good Nebraska is getting their junior wide out back into the swing of things after his season-ending injury from last year, but like quarterback Armstrong said, “It’s just a confidence thing for him.”