The Lincoln Star from Lincoln, Nebraska on October 24, 1976 · Page 33
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The Lincoln Star from Lincoln, Nebraska · Page 33

Lincoln, Nebraska
Issue Date:
Sunday, October 24, 1976
Page 33
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Up * .'it**'.- , and Down ¿OT I 3 p lC^OLOR3 1 ^iiHiiau JUiiiniiii aiio Siar ^ SPORÎREO Best Read H Sport Red Flying Larry Valasek (4) leads a Husker charge that includes George Andrews (96) and Ted Harvey (31) and blocks an attempted punt by Monte Montgomery (12) from deep in Tiger STAFF COtOFiF>HOTO BV WtB MAT territory. Valasek’s block resulted in the first Nebraska touchdown when Kent Smith fell on the ball in the end zone. The Bomb That Killed NV Nebraska's View . . . . . . Missouri's View By Virgil Parker Last year. Nebraska came up with the "Bummeroosky'’ on its way to a football victory over Missouri. Mizzou countered with its • Pahseroosky" to stuu pie Cornhuskers Saturday. A 98-yard bomb friwj quarterback Pete Wtxxls to slotbadi Joe Stqwart — the longest touchdown pass play in Big Eight Conference history — pulled the visiting Tigers from a 24-23 deficit and led then to a 34-24 triumph. The result, coupled with Oklahoma’s loss to Oklahoma State, leaves five teams log- jammed into a first-place tie for the conference lead ‘ We had a mwup in our coverage, ’ ( ornhusker coach Tom Osborne admitted. It was a breakdown in communication. One pass defense was called in the defensive huddle, then it was changed. I don't know if it was the noise of the crowd or what, but .somebody missed the change.” DaVe Butterfield. Nebraska's all-Big Eight cornerback, took the blame. "1 thought I was supposed to hit the guy in the flat That was the huddle call,”' Butter recalled “But there was a defensive audible and I should have picked it up — the other three guys (defensive backs Kent Smith. Larry Valasek and Ted Harvey) did. Playing in the flat. I was going to move up and jam (bump) the guy But, 1 slipped and fell” Saftey Valasek. who made a desperate dive to catch Stewart after the catch, said the play did not come as a total surprise. “We practiced against that very play all week, ’ Valasek said. “We saw on the films that they liked to throw the takeoff pass when they are deep like that. We even kept reminding ourselves of it in the huddle. That s what makes it hurt so bad” Valasek echoed the sentiment that football is a game of inches. “If I had reacted a split second earlier I might have got him,” Valasek said. “I was just two feet away when I dove (for him. That play was the biggest blow of my life.” Leading by a point at the time, Nebraska had pushed Missouri back. The Tigers faced a third-and-14 situation from their own two-yardline “I was so fired up just before that play,” Vala.sek remembers “We had ’em backed up We had the lead I looked up in the stands and saw all those fans yelling. 1 was really up ’ Then that play. What a blow.” "There were lots of turning points, what with all our mistakes,” Osborne observed. “But that pass had to be the biggest. We had things under control. It looked like we'd be getting the ball in good field position Then . . .” and his voice trailed off. "We were in a very basic run-pass defense. ” NÜ defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin said. “Then we had the mixup in our coverage We weren't trying to blitz or anything. We had the lead and the momentum That long pass changed everything. When he (Stewart) was running down the field, it was one of the worst moments of my coaching career.” By Randy York Missouri's A1 Onofrio may vote Kepubhcan m next month s elections, but somehow it would .seem out of character. If he s conservative, CharUe Fmley is predictable That’s why Tiger quarterback Pete Woods was not the least bit surprised early in the fourth quarter Saturday when tight end Mike Williams came into .'Uizzou s huddle with the play “pro left, tight 127, Z streak.” Third and 14 on your own two-yard line isn't the typical time to isolate your best receiver on a streak pattern. A quarterback in a different system might have fainted when he heard the message. He would have at least cleared the extra wax out of his ear. But not Woods, Steve Pisarkiewicz’s replacement “Nothing, ” he said, “sur- pri-ses me on this football team anymore We re nut tlw* type to play it conservative and that wasn t the time to get conservative. It was a helluva call If the tide was going to turn, that was going to be it.” Woods laid the pass into the hands of split end Joe Stewart, former Illinois prep I'JO and 220 -yard dash champion. The 98- yard bomb and two-point conversion pass from Woods to Stewart transformed a 24-23 Muzou deficit into a 31-24 cushion. "All I had to do was throw it out there, ” Woods said "You don’t overthrow Joe Stewart. I just let it fly. I knew he’d get under It .No one can cover him one-on-one, not even Dave Butterfield ” All-Big Eight cornerback Butterfield, who did not hear Nebraska’s defensive audible, said he slipped while trying to bump Stewart for someone else to cover him deep “I don't know that he slipped," Stewart said “I didn’t see that 1 just think I put the move on him I was talking to myself all the way down the field. I said ‘I have to catch It and after I caught it. I just kept saying ‘don't drop it . . . don t drop it.’ ’’ Mizzou linhd up with two tight ends and StQwart the only wide receiver. Woods sensed Nebraska was run-conscious when he saw “both safeties play in close.” Woods, who compiled an 8-1 pitching record on .Mizzou's Big Eight champion baseball team last spring, faked handoffs to both running backs, then threw over the middle. Dean Leibson, the Tigers’ third team tailback, “took my fake and carried it out. I was pursued and all I had to do was bring those linebackers up like that,” he said, snapping his fingers, “and we were gone.” On the conversion. Missouri’s Leo Lewis movc'd from spht end to tailback. Lamont Downer was the split end on the play and Stewart the slotback. “We sent Leo in motion the opposite way of the play to loosen them up, so they couldn’t double cover us,” Woods said “That left Joe in a one-on-one situation again with Butterfield and it was a matter of me lofting the ball over his head into the corner of the end zone You get Joe into man-to-man coverage and he’s going to beat people. ” One ^Fumble-Roosky' Enough for Husk^rO L O R MO Neb First downs.................... 15 23 Rushes-yards....................51-207 50-223 Passing yards............... 191 191 Return yards................. 32 11 Passes ...............................6-16-0 13-22-2 Punts................................ 6-40 3-44 Fumbles lost — ........... 2-1 5-4 Penalties-yards............... 5-52 2-10 _____ ____ __________ By Bob Owens F’ box pundits jokingly called it the ^ .„-c ID “fumble-roosky ' when Monte Anthony wtober .4,197b lu dropped the ball and Chuck Malito /,,ne The try for point, however, was recovered at the .Missouri four to set up the blocked by M(” s Tom Hodge, a fact which touchdown that gave Nebraska its first lead created dilemma for the Buskers the rest of the game early in the .second quarter y| Oio afternoon It worked so well, the Cornhuskers kept The ‘ fumble-roosky" carnc when on fumbling the rest of the foggy afternoon Anthony broke through the line on the in NU's Memorial Stadium. fourth play of the stHond quarter and then Unfortunately, .Nebraska found that fumbled after running about 15 yards Two fumbling, like crime, does not pay and Buskers, Dodie Donnell and Ken Spa**th Missouri went home with a 34-24 victory. had ,i chance to recover it and .Missouri s “The turnovers were disastrous, " Coach M,ge Newman had a shot at it before Tom Osborne said m the subdued Husker split end Chuck .Mahto recovered at the locker room “In the long run we fumbled yjti 4 away any chance we had .Missouri had Anthonv took it over two plays later, some costly turnovers, too. but when two making the score 12-7 good teams are playing, a discrepency of That set the stage for the first of two un- five turnovers make it difficult, if not im- succe.ssful two-point conver.-sion tries possible, to win " Missouri took a 20-12 lead after The loss for the No 3-rated Nebraskans, Nebraska s third turnover, Kichard Berns’ .coupled with Oklahoma’s defeat by second lost fumble of the game which Oklahoma State and the win by Colorado followed a 9-yard Woods to Kellen Winslow over Iowa State left the Big Eight touchdown pass. .Missouri took over at the Conference race in a five-way tie for first M? 20 Spht end Leo Lewis scampered 19 place yards on a reverse and Woods sneaked it It marked the fourth time this season the goal. Gibbons kicked the point Missouri has whipped an undefeated and T,gers’ onlv turnover, a fumble bv nationally ranked team All four of the vie- bowman covered' by Curtis Craig after a tones were engineered by reserve quarter- Lessman punt, enabled Nebraska to ba( k Pete Woods, a junior from University ,„yrgm to ‘20-18 with 2; 19 left in the t 'D’. half Quarterback Vince Ferragamo scored Woods scored two touchdowns on one- q on a sneak, but his two-point pass to Bob- yard runs and then virtually settled the bv Thomas was broken up bv MU defensive issue when he threw to slotback Joe Fitzgerald The earlier trv was Stewart for the longest touchdown pass in incomplete to Anthony Big Eight hi.story (iibbons’ first of two field goahs. a 23- rhe play covered 98 yards early in the ^^^(1 attempt, made it 23-13 with eight fourth (juarter A subsequent two-point ;,.,„nds to go before the intermis.N*on conversion on a Woods-to-Stewart pass, „ jp ,.,t.t.nied to be turning to the wiped out a 24-23 .Nebraska lead the Huskers in the third quarter They got only Buskers had gained on .\l Lveland s 20- three* points out of the 15 minutes of action, yard field goal on the first play of the however, despite producing 198 yards in lourth quarter tQtjj offense, po.sting 11 first downs and "This Is a great thrill, but the Ohio State holding Missouri to no first downs and a game was even greater because it was my ^et of 10 vards on just six plavs,' first start, W'oods said “It’s fun to be on j,jp jjuskers drove 78 vards to the MU 4 the roller coaster as long as we get off it j 2 pi.,ys. but had to settle for Eveland s from now own 2 l-vard field goal, cutting their (k*ficit to Missouri, now 5-2 for the .season, lost to 23-21 Thev drove 81 vards to the MU on Illinois the week after beating Southern their next po.s.>ession! but DonnelHumbled California in the season opener Then they defensive tackle Donald Cole beat Ohio State, but last week fell to Iowa recovered State at home In between, they won over ji,py n^yved from their own to the North ( arolina and Kansas State Tiger three on the last play of the quarter. After VViHids pass .sent .Ml ahead 31-24, jy accept three points from Osborne said tlie Buskers might well have Eveland s toe on the first plav of the last played for a tie ” if they had scored again quarter bt'cau-se they already knew Oklahoma had ,j^Pfn tf,p jp^j 24-23. but it was been beaten. ^.hort lived despite the ensuing kitkoff “Hight now our players are down and which put Mi.s.souri in poor field position, discouraged, but Oklahoma lost and win- K was third down and 14 yards to go with ning the Big Eight title is still our goal. |j,p jjis own 2 when Woods uni’orked Osborne said. “We would have liked to ^is spt'ctacular pass to Stewart have been national champions, but that jj^p yg-vard pass, which came with 12 53 will be difficult now. But. we re in as good jp,, tf,e game, broke the old Big Eight a shape* as anybody else in the conference record of 97 vards set in 1983 wfhen Bill race. We re nOt done by a longshot This is ppmyn ,hrew'to Willie Hiv Smith of fcan- a tough league We just hop** that at the ^ ^^,„ p end we re the survivor Nebraska still had plenty of tim^ and got Long bt'fore the “fumble-roosky play — I^^ p ( jj H fyyj. y^y,.p {j,p game, but -SO calk'd because of the fake punt called twice more lost it on turnovers the bummeroosky which produced a O ppp {j^p jjusRers fumbled it at their 32, Busker touchdown last year at Missouri - Gibtxms a shot at a 41-yard field Nebraska was mistake ridden gy^l which sailed wide to the left. Then The Buskers lost the ball the first two Perragamo threw his second interception times they had the ball, the first time on an {,y^p (Jipfxjns converted from 34 interception and next on a fumble. ty ^jjp g^y^p yj rp^ph After the interception Woods pas.sed 44 ’ T^e only apparent injury the Hu.skers yards to Stewart to the NU l-yard hne and suffered was the recurring knee problem of then took it in two plays later on a keeper Anthonv. through right tackle. Tim Gibbons’ kick made it 7-t) The race for the conference title con- The Buskers got that one back, despite tmut*s next Saturday when the Bu.skers go the tumble, when Larry Valasek broke to Kansas .Missouri goes to Oklahoma through to bliK k Monte .Montgomery’s Stale. Oklahoma to Uolorado, and Kansas punt and Kent .Smith recovered in the end Slate to Iowa Stale Ralston’s Osborne Hopes Lightning Won’t Strike Again By Kaody York Prt*p Spurts F^tor Playing the football playoff waiting game IS tough on any prep coach, even if he's armed with a trusty calculator and a world of confidence But as the curtain gest ready to drop on Nebraska’s regular season next weekend. John Osborne has to be the most apprehensive coach of all Osborne, heed coach for No 1-rated Kalslon. knows the frustraUon of thinking you have something and then not getting it. While coaching at Nevada, Mo., he had thrt*e teams edged out of the state playoffs — each time by less than a tenth of a peri entage point His 1971 Nevada team finished 8-2, but lost a playoff berth to St. Louis Chaminade High School His 1973 team went 10-0, but lost out to Joplin Memorial. In 1974, Osborne’s final year at Nevada, his team finished 9-1. This time, Jefferson City Helias edged Nevada out of the playoffs. “You start to feel a little snake-bitten,” Osborne observed "Of course, Missouri ra tified the problem by expanding to an eight-team playbff two years ago instrad of a four team playoff I m hoping Nebraska makes the same type of change for next year,” Osborne .said "IKm t get me wrong I'm not complaining Having a playoff is the most important thing The bugs will eventually work themselves out ” There may be more than one team complaining next weekend when aU the remits are in. Ratings on Sunday To bring high school football fans up to date as quickly as possible in the late stages of the season, the Sunday Journal and Star's prep ratings for Classes A and B will be carried in Sunday editions for the balance of the season, instead of the customary daily editions Ratings for Classes C-1, C-2, D and 8 -nian will appear, along with the .Nebraska School Activities Assn district point standings, in Tuesday editions of the Lincoln Journal and Lincoln Star, as has been the case in the past if you re a betting man, you might want to go with these teams in Class A -- Lincoln Southeast, Ralston, and Grand Island in three of the districb The other district battle between Omaha Westside and Omaha Northwest appears so evenly matched, the representative might have to be determined by an overall percentage compar^n of the two teanb* respective opponent. Things are that close The name of the game is to still win to avoid complicated point hassles. The Nebraska School Activities Assn will not name playoff quahfiers officially until next Sunday But, unofficially, it's fun to play the point game According to Sunday Journal and Star computations. Southeast need only a win at Papilhon Friday to quaUfy from district I It Grand Islaiida8-d-2) defeats Hastirms (2-8) Friday nigfit, the Islanders are seen as the district 4 playoff representative rt^rdless of Friday’s outcwne brtween Scottsbluff (84ij ami Nmrth Platte (8-2). Only a very bizarre set of point circumstances figures to keep Ralston out of file playoffs, if the No. l-rated, district 2 Rams finish the regular season with a win over Lincoln .Northeast Friday night at home Second-ranked Creighton Prep still has a chance to overtake the Rams. But if Ralston wins. Prep must hope that Omaha Gross upsets Bellevue and Lincoln East upsets Lincoln High That, of course, is contingent on Prep beating rated Omaha Northwest The variables are even greater in Westside and Northwest’s battle to the wire in the district 3 point standings V^estside is a solid favorite to defeat Omaha Ryan in its season finale against Onwha Ryan But should Northwest upset m nliu Sunday College Football - Ntfre Oamt • - « itA Cell Temi ixm irWiivUfi rwwiMiPM rvweew ime hlfpliligliH, I a.m., id) liete Fee^ll ‘U, 0(D«; m Otberne Shew, 10:30 p.rp., Prep, the Huskies could tie Westside in the point standings That would force a comparison between opponents’ individual records and right now. Northwest toes have won two more games than Westside opponents. A Gross upset of liellevue would further enhance .Northwest prospects As unlikely as it seems, Lincoln High remains in the playoff picture with Southeast in district 1 In fact, if Southeast (5-1-2) loses to Papillion and the Links (4-31 ) defeat h!;ast, the two are projected to tie in the final point standings That would force an analysis of individual records and Lincoln High would be the team to profit because it has played a confirmed winner in North Platte compared to Southeast’s playing a confirmed hwer in Fremont » Eight opponents are common on the schedules of Southeast and Lincoln High. A point deadlock could be reached because of Southeast’s tie with Fremont (worth 30 points) and Lincoln High’s loss to North Platte (also worth 30 points). They are the teams not common on the Capitol City Schedules 11 Ha.stings upsets Grand Island and Scottsbluff defeats .North Platte, Scottsbluff would edge out the Islanders in district 4 Should Grand Island and Scottsbluff lose their final tests. Columbus (8-1-1) could tie Grand Island in the final point standings with a season-ending win at Norfolk That, too. would force« comparison of individual recortb. Prep Ratings By Randy York Class A Ì- Ralston (8-0) 2— Creighton Prep (7-1) 3 - Scottsbluff (8-0) 4 — Grand Island (6-0-2) 5 - Bellevue (6-2) 6 - Lincoln Soutlieast (5-t-2), 7 — Omaha South (6-2) * 8 - Omaha Westside (6-2) ! 9 - Omaha Northwest (6-2) 10 - Columbus (6-1-1) Comment - Unbeatens Ralston and Scottsbluff face maior challenges m. next weekend's season finales Scottsbluff hosts strong finishing North* Platte, a 6-2 team with an eye on the top 10 Ralston hosts Lincoln Northeast.* Another key matchup is Creighton Prep at Omaha Northwest, which used • 3-0 upset win over Omaha Sooth last week to return to the top 10. Class B 1 - Gordon (8-0) 2 - Lexington (7-1) 3 - Lincoln Pius X (7-1) 4 — Plattsmouth (8-0) 5 — Geriny (6 2) 6 — Fairbury (7-1 ) » 7 - Schuyler (7-1) | 8 — Gothenburg (6-2) * 9 “ Columbus Scotus (6 2)! 10 - Blair (6-2) Comment — Columpus Scotus and Blair replaceCozad and Grand Island^ Central Catholic m the top 10. Gordon, having survived Goring, 1-7, should* receive little argument from Crawford in its regular season wmdup.! Plattsmouth faces a stiffer challenge in its bid to finish the regular seasoo unbeaten, playing at Nebraska City (5-3) Friday night.

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