LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- Cory Ross ran for a career-high 194 yards
and two touchdowns to lead Nebraska to a 24-3 victory over Missouri
on Saturday, giving the Cornhuskers sole possession of first place
in the Big 12 North.
Missouri (4-4, 2-3 Big 12) outgained Nebraska (5-3, 3-2)
328-235, but still lost its third straight game.
Nebraska relied heavily on its special teams, with Andrew Shanle
blocking a punt and recovering a fumble on another botched punt
attempt to set up the Huskers' first two touchdowns.
With Nebraska leading 17-3 late in the fourth, Ross iced the
game with a career-long 86-yard run after Missouri turned the ball
over on downs deep in Huskers territory.
Otherwise, the two offenses struggled to produce points,
combining for 20 punts.
Missouri quarterback Brad Smith ran 21 times for a season-low 25
yards, but he completed 24-of-56 passes for a season-high 277
Nebraska's Joe Dailey was 4-of-18 for 26 yards.
The Huskers broke a 3-3 tie in the second quarter when Shanle
blocked Matt Hoenes' punt and Adam Ickes returned it 16 yards for a
Nebraska upped its lead to 17-3 late in the third after another
Missouri punt attempt that went awry. Hoenes bobbled the snap,
sprinted to his right under pressure from Shanle and then whiffed
as he tried to kick the ball on the run.
Shanle recovered, and Ross followed with a 15-yard touchdown
Nebraska drove 52 yards in 10 plays on the game's first series,
with Sandro DeAngelis kicking a 41-yard field goal.
Missouri tied it early in the second quarter after Brandon
Massey partially blocked Sam Koch's punt. The Huskers' Kellen
Huston recovered, then spiked the ball in anger for a 15-yard
unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that set up Joe Tantarelli's
39-yard field goal.
The Tigers arrived in Lincoln just three hours before kickoff.
Their chartered plane went off the runway in wet conditions Friday
at the Columbia, Mo., airport. No one was injured.
Instead of having the travel party wait at the airport while the
plane was inspected and the Federal Aviation Administration
conducted an investigation, the decision was made to fly to Lincoln
on Saturday, Missouri spokesman Chad Moller said.
Moller said the Tigers' flight landed at 8:10 a.m. Kickoff was
at 11:10 a.m.