What a way to bounce back. After the Huskers had it handed to them last Saturday in Oklahoma, Bo Pelini’s group came back with a spirited 45-35 win over the Kansas Jayhawks to become bowl eligible.
The Huskers are now 6-4 overall and tied for 2nd in the Big 12 North at 3-3 with KU. Joe Ganz passed for 324 yards and three touchdowns, Roy Helu Jr. ran for 115 yards and two scores.
Taking a page out of the 1985 Chicago Bears’ playbook, Ndamukong Suh, the Huskers’ 300-pound nose tackle, caught a two yard touchdown pass from Ganz ala The Refrigerator Perry to give NU a 10 point lead in the 4th.
Earlier in the week, Pelini eluded to the fact that Helu would not see any more carries this week at Marlon Lucky and Quentin Castille were a little banged up.
However, in the second half Helu got the bulk of the carries after the Huskers were down 21-17. Helu plunged in on a 10 yard run, then after the Husker held KU, Helu went 52 yards to give the Huskers a 31-21 lead.
The Jayhawks cut the lead to three on a touchdown run by Jake Sharpe, but the Huskers answered with Suh’s TD. The turning point came when Zach Potter picked off Todd Reesing, then kicker Alex Henry ran a first down off a fake. Ganz then hit Nate Swift to put the Husksers up by 17.
Reesing would bring the Jayhawks back for another score and then KU got an onside kick, but lost possession on downs and the Huskers finished off the game.
The Huskers ran plays all game to keep KU off balance. It was refreshing to see them show some different wrinkles. The Huskers first score came when Marlon Lucky took a direct snap, and threw a jump pass to tight end Mike McNeill.