3:30 PM ET, October 28, 2006
Boone Pickens Stadium, STILLWATER, OK
STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) -- With its quick-strike offense, Oklahoma State wasn't a bit intimidated by a 16-point deficit.
Dantrell Savage ran for 117 yards and two touchdowns, and Nathan Peterson returned a fumble for another score to lead Oklahoma State to a 41-29 upset of No. 20 Nebraska on Saturday.
"We knew we were capable of winning that game," Oklahoma State receiver D'Juan Woods said. "We didn't have any doubts."
Savage scored his second touchdown on a 20-yard run on the second play of the fourth quarter, capping the Cowboys' comeback from an early 16-0 deficit. It's just the fourth win for Oklahoma State in 41 games against Nebraska but the second straight for the Cowboys in Stillwater.
"It's a good day for Oklahoma State," coach Mike Gundy said. "I'm proud to wear orange."
Oklahoma State (5-3, 2-2 Big 12) also beat the Cornhuskers 24-21 in 2002, snapping a 24-game losing streak in the series. The loss keeps Nebraska (6-3, 3-2) in a tie for the Big 12 North lead with Missouri, which lost earlier in the day to Oklahoma. Nebraska hosts Missouri next week, with the division title likely on the line.
"I am not pleased with our efforts today," Nebraska coach Bill Callahan said. "We can play better, we can coach better and that was pretty evident today."
Nebraska, boasting the nation's seventh-ranked scoring offense, showed no hangover from a last-minute loss to Texas last week and built an early 16-0 lead on the strength of the best half of Brandon Jackson's career.
Jackson ran for 66 yards on six carries to set up Jordan Congdon's 26-yard field goal on Nebraska's opening possession, then was able to finish off each of the Huskers' next two drives with scores from 2 and 24 yards. He had 124 yards by halftime, surpassing his career-high, and finished with 182 yards on 21 carries.
But the Cowboys, with the nation's No. 11 offense, weren't shaken. They turned the game into a shootout with three plays of 45 yards or longer, and eight of 15 yards or more.
"I don't ever feel like I'm out of the ballgame until the other team's ahead and there's zeros on the clock," quarterback Bobby Reid said. "Until then, we're just going to keep on playing our ball."
Gundy said he didn't think the Cowboys would have been able to outscore Nebraska by just lining up and pounding it at the Cornhuskers. The key was breaking big plays, and offensive coordinator Larry Fedora got them from all over.
"Coach Fedora I guess pulls a name out of a hat and goes with it," Woods said. "When you get all of us making plays at one time, it's a sight to see."
Reid scrambled for 56 yards and then beat Nebraska's blitz with an 18-yard lob to Keith Toston for a touchdown. Savage added an 18-yard TD to make it 16-13.
Nebraska answered with Zac Taylor's 22-yard pass to Maurice Purify with 56 seconds left before halftime. That was enough time for Oklahoma State to get a 39-yard kickoff return from Perrish Cox to set up a 45-yard score from Reid to Adarius Bowman, the nation's No. 2 receiver.
After an uneventful third quarter, Reid threw a 55-yard strike to D'Juan Woods on a double move down the left sideline to start the fourth quarter, and Savage ran in from 20 yards on the next play to give the Cowboys a 27-23 lead.
The Cowboys then harassed Taylor, who verbally committed to the Cowboys out of high school, sacking him before consecutive incompletions forced a punt. Oklahoma State responded with a nine-play, 77-yard drive capped by Julius Crosslin's 1-yard dive.
Nebraska had no answer. After missing a field goal on their first drive after halftime, the Cornhuskers' next drives ended with four punts and then Taylor's fumble, which Peterson ran back 19 yards to seal the game with 3:16 left.
That ensured Oklahoma State wouldn't give up another fourth-quarter lead, as it had in both of its Big 12 losses.
"We could have responded much better. There were flashes of good plays, but other plays where we dropped balls, missed reads and missed tackles and coverages so we gave up big plays," Callahan said. "I was not satisfied at all with what we did in the second half. It was pretty graphic."
Taylor, who had 241 yards and two touchdowns on 21-for-39 passing, moved ahead of Jerry Tagge and 2001 Heisman winner Eric Crouch into second place on Nebraska's all-time passing list with 4,718 career passing yards. His second scoring pass was a 5-yarder to Purify with 7 seconds left.
Top 25 Overview
It was over when... OSU's Dantrell Savage scored his second TD of the game early in the fourth quarter, giving the Cowboys its first lead of the game.
Gameball goes to... Savage. The Oklahoma State running back rushed for 122 yards and two scores on 16 carries.
Stat of the game... 4. Oklahoma State's victory Saturday was just its fourth in 41 games vs. Nebraska.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||7-16||6-11|
|4th Down Conversions||1-1||0-1|
|FG||8:22||JORDAN CONGDON 26 YD FG|
Drive info: 10 plays, 66 yards.
|TD||0:33||BRANDON JACKSON 2 YD RUN (JORDAN CONGDON KICK)|
Drive info: 8 plays, 51 yards.
|TD||10:43||BRANDON JACKSON 24 YD RUN (FAILED 2PT RUSH)|
Drive info: 5 plays, 61 yards.
|TD||8:12||KEITH TOSTON 16 YD PASS FROM BOBBY REID (BLOCKED XP)|
Drive info: 5 plays, 80 yards.
|TD||4:13||DANTRELL SAVAGE 18 YD RUN (JASON RICKS KICK)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 50 yards.
|TD||0:56||MAURICE PURIFY 22 YD PASS FROM ZAC TAYLOR (JORDAN CONGDON KICK)|
Drive info: 7 plays, 78 yards.
|TD||0:15||ADARIUS BOWMAN 45 YD PASS FROM BOBBY REID (JASON RICKS KICK)|
Drive info: 1 plays, 45 yards.
|TD||14:34||DANTRELL SAVAGE 20 YD RUN (JASON RICKS KICK)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 76 yards.
|TD||8:05||JULIUS CROSSLIN 1 YD RUN (JASON RICKS KICK)|
Drive info: 9 plays, 77 yards.
|TD||3:16||NATHAN PETERSON 19 YD DEFENSIVE FUMBLE RETURN (JASON RICKS KICK)||23||41|
|TD||0:07||MAURICE PURIFY 5 YD PASS FROM ZAC TAYLOR (MISSED KICK)|
Drive info: 12 plays, 80 yards.