For the second time in as many road games, the Huskers turned a fourth quarter deficit into victory after Taylor Martinez threw a five yard touchdown pass to Jamal Turner in the waning seconds to give Nebraska a 28-24 win over the Michigan State Spartans.
Turner’s touchdown capped a thrilling comeback in which the Cornhuskers scored two touchdowns in the final 7:02. It was also set up by a controversial pass interference call the play before that set NU up at the Michigan State five with 11 seconds to play.
“I can’t believe that I won the game,” said Turner. “I’ve been dreaming about this my whole life.”
Martinez lofted a pass to Kenny Bell in the endzone. Darqueze Dennard was flagged for pass interference, giving NU the ball with a chance to win. Had the play be ruled incomplete, it’s likely the Huskers would have forced overtime.
Earlier Michigan State had a chance to put the game away in the fourth when Dennard stepped in front of a Martinez pass at the nine yard line and zigzagged his way for a touchdown. However, it was called back after an unsportsmanlike penalty wiped out the TD. That would have made the game 31-14.
The Spartans ended up having to punt, and Martinez made it 24-21 with a 35-yard touchdown run with 7:02 to play. Less than a minute later, Michigan State was punting again.
The Spartans stopped Nebraska on fourth down near midfield with 3:12 remaining, but the Cornhuskers used their timeouts and forced one more punt from their 39. After the touchback on the punt, the Huskers went back to work.
The final drive was kept alive when Martinez hit Kyler Reed for a 38 yard completion on a 4th and 10 that got the ball down to Michigan State’s 20 yard line.
Martinez rushed for 205 yards and two touchdowns, becoming Nebraska’s career leader in total offense. He also threw three interceptions, in a game the Cornhuskers never led this one until the end, after they took over at their own 20 with 1:20 remaining and went 80 yards in nine plays.
Nebraska (7-2, 4-1) remains tied with Michigan atop the Big Ten Legends Division — and beat the Wolverines head to head.