Today’s Penn State at Nebraska football game was one that both sides desperately wanted. The Huskers would outlast the Nittany Lions, moving to 1-2 on the season.
The last few years have been extremely rough for the Huskers, as Scott Frost tries to establish the same success at his alma mater as he had at UCF. That has proven to be difficult. With today’s win, he’s now just 10-17 with a 7-14 Big Ten record.
Eric Crouch was took a redshirt year as a true freshman at Nebraska in 1997. That season, Frost was the team’s senior starting quarterback. That year, the team went 13-0, beating Peyton Manning’s Tennessee Vols in the Orange Bowl. They’d finish at No. 1 in the Coaches Poll, and claim a national championship, in a year with split champions as Michigan was also undefeated and No. 1 in the AP Poll.
Crouch would go on to win a pair of Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year awards at quarterback for Nebraska, taking home the 2001 Heisman Trophy. He was proud of the team’s effort today in the 30-23 win.
Nice win today! Way to fight to the end! #nebraskafootball
— Eric Crouch (@croucheric) November 14, 2020
Nebraska football pulled out the win despite getting outgained 501 yards to 298. Luke McCaffrey supplanted Adrian Martinez at quarterback, and led the team in both passing and rushing, putting up 219 total yards and a pair of scores. Ultimately, it was the Huskers’ red zone defense that delivered the win, holding Penn State to field goals or turnovers on downs on drive after drive inside the 20 yard line.
Penn State has been the Big Ten East’s second best team for much of James Franklin’s tenure with the team, but the struggles have been serious this year. With the loss, the team is now 0-4 to start the 2020 season, a year in which some thought they could be a sleeper College Football Playoff contender. Between opt-outs and injuries, Franklin’s roster is pretty decimated, but no one could’ve anticipated this kind of start. Even so, given Penn State’s prestige as a program, Husker fans have a right to feel good about this one.
Nebraska looks to move to 2-2 next week, at home against Illinois.
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