COLUMBUS, Ohio - The ninth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team topped Ohio State, 3-1 (25-15, 23-25, 25-12, 25-9), on Wednesday night in front of a crowd of 1,185 at St. John Arena.
The Huskers (16-5, 7-4 Big Ten) snapped their three-match skid behind a career-high 16 kills from Lauren Stivrins. The sophomore middle blocker hit .789 on the night with just one error on 19 swings. Four Huskers finished with double-digit kills. Mikaela Foecke had 12 kills, Jazz Sweet had 11 and Lexi Sun had 10. Foecke hit .345 and Sweet hit .391, as the Huskers hit .407, their second-highest mark of the season. Nebraska's 10 attack errors were its fewest in Big Ten play this season.
Nebraska's defense was just as strong, holding Ohio State (12-11, 3-8 Big Ten) to .083 hitting. The Huskers had 10 blocks, led by six from Foecke and five from Callie Schwarzenbach, who also had six kills. NU was blocked only five times and had a 59-43 edge in digs. Kenzie Maloney had 14 digs, while Nicklin Hames had 13 digs to go with 44 assists. Foecke and Sun had 11 and 10 digs, respectively, to finish with double-doubles.
The Big Red finished with seven aces, four of which came from Maloney. Megan Miller had two.
Vanja Bukilic had 11 kills for the Buckeyes. Bia Franklin added 10.
Set 1: Three kills by Sweet and a pair of blocks by Foecke and Stivrins gave the Huskers an early 7-3 lead. Stivrins pounded three kills to help the Huskers double up the Buckeyes at 12-6. A fifth kill by Stivrins and a Buckeye hitting error made it 20-13 Huskers. Foecke, Stivrins and Sun strung together kills at the end to help NU take set one, 25-15. Stivrins had seven kills, and the Huskers hit .481.
Set 2: Ohio State took a 10-6 lead after a 7-1 run. The Huskers trailed 12-7, but Schwarzenbach combined on a pair of blocks and Sun had a kill and a block to pull NU within 13-12. Ohio State clung to its lead until Sun put a kill to the corner to tie the set at 19-19. Sun and Schwarzenbach then stuffed a Buckeye attack for a 20-19 Husker lead. After an OSU timeout, the Buckeyes scored a 3-1 run to go up 22-21 and led 23-22 before Stivrins tied the score with her 11th kill. But Ohio State grabbed set point with a Witte kill and won 25-23 after a Husker hitting error.
Set 3: The Huskers grabbed a 9-3 lead with Maloney serving three aces as part of a 6-0 run. Foecke tallied back-to-back kills, and Miller served an ace to make it 12-4 Big Red. The Huskers maintained at least a seven-point lead the rest of the way and went up 21-11 on kills by Sweet, Stivrins and Foecke. Stivrins surpassed her career high in kills with two more as the Huskers closed out a 25-12 win. NU hit .480 in the set and held the Buckeyes to .061.
Set 4: Nebraska got off to a strong set, taking a 7-1 lead with kills by Schwarzenbach and Sweet and two blocks by Foecke and Schwarzenbach. The Huskers dominated set four, finishing the match with a 25-9 win. The Huskers hit .600 with 12 kills and no errors on 20 swings. Ohio State hit -.037.
Up Next: Nebraska hosts No. 6 Illinois at 7 p.m. on Saturday at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
Lincoln – The Nebraska football team practiced in full pads and helmets for just under two hours inside the Hawks Championship Center and outside on the Ed and Joyanne Gass Practice Fields on Wednesday, to prepare for Saturday’s game against Bethune-Cookman.
Offensive Coordinator Troy Walters spoke to the media after practice, discussing how the team has balanced getting rest during what was supposed to be a bye week, while also preparing for Bethune-Cookman.
“We’ve tried to balance an off week,” Walters said. “It’s supposed to be a bye week, so we’re making sure we get rest and keep the guys fresh, as well as preparing for Bethune-Cookman, as well as trying to get some recruiting in. We try to balance it all. I think the players have done a great job of responding. It’s been a great week of getting everything accomplished that we want to accomplish. [The energy has] been great.”
Walters also reflected on the Minnesota game last weekend, specifically the success of the wide receivers, including senior Stanley Morgan Jr., who had 10 catches for 163 yards and two touchdowns.
“I’m proud of him,” Walters said. “He hadn’t had the year he wanted, that we would like him to have, but he’s never hung his head. He’s never strayed from the process and it’s good to see his hard work, his dedication and his commitment be rewarded. Every game here on out, I expect a big game from him.”
Additionally, Walters discussed how he was impressed with the blocking he saw from the wide receivers.
“No block, no rock. Those guys have gotten better,” Walters said. “[Junior wide receiver] Mike Williams - one of the proudest moments I had was when he came down and blocked a safety for [senior running back] Devine [Ozigbo’s] second long run. He blocked him and stayed on him. I’m really proud of those guys. Those long runs are a result of those guys on the perimeter doing their jobs. To me blocking is all about being selfless, being a team guy and a team player. Whenever you have an opportunity to help another teammate, our guys relish that opportunity and cherish it and want to be the block that springs a great run. As an offense, I think we’re playing together. We enjoy playing with one another and whatever we can do to help our teammates out, we’re doing. It’s been great.”
Walters also raved about freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez and his performance against the Golden Gophers. Martinez was 25-of-29 for 276 yards through the air and three touchdowns.
“He’s playing with a lot of confidence and a lot of poise,” Walters said. “[He went a] whole game with four incompletions. I know one was a drop, one could have been a pass interference call, so he played almost a perfect game. As a true freshman, that’s special. It always helps when the offensive lineman are doing their job, protecting him, opening up running lanes. Any time you can run for over 300 yards, it’s going to help a quarterback. We’re getting open on the perimeter, so all of those factors contribute to Adrian having the success he’s having.”
Finally, Walters talked about the improvements of the offensive line.
“They’re playing together, playing as one, coming off the ball, setting a new line of scrimmage and really finishing,” Walters said. “Those guys knew who to block but it was about finishing that guy off and not letting him make a play downfield. Those guys have done a great job. We’re rotating guys in so they’re fresh, but I think the biggest thing was playing together and finishing the blocks up front.”
The Huskers will host the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats at Memorial Stadium on Saturday. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. and the game will be televised on BTN.
The No. 9 Nebraska volleyball team plays its fourth straight road match when it meets Ohio State on Wednesday at 6 p.m. (CT) at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio.
About the Huskers
• Nebraska enters the match at 15-5 overall and 6-4 in the Big Ten. The Huskers are looking to snap a three-match skid, all losses against top-10 teams on the road, two of which went five sets.
• Nebraska is in the midst of playing six matches against top-10 teams in less than a month. The Huskers just played at No. 9 Penn State, at No. 9 Wisconsin and at No. 3 Minnesota in an eight-day span. After Wednesday’s match at Ohio State, the Huskers will host No. 6 Illinois and No. 4 Penn State in its upcoming matches.
• Saturday’s match against No. 6 Illinois at the Devaney Center will be the Weekend of Champions celebration. The Huskers will honor their 1998 and 2008 Big 12 champion and NCAA Final Four teams.
• Nebraska leads the nation in opponent hitting percentage at .134.
• Nebraska leads the Big Ten and ranks 12th nationally with 1.72 aces per set.
• Nebraska’s 2.73 blocks per set ranks 18th nationally and fourth in the Big Ten.
• Senior co-captain Mikaela Foecke, who has twice been named Big Ten Player of the Week this season, leads the Huskers with 3.65 kills per set and adds 2.52 digs per set and 29 service aces this season. The AVCA second-team All-American is hitting .301 and is the only active player in NCAA Division I with at least 1,000 career kills, 200 career blocks, 500 career digs and 100 career aces.
• Fellow senior captain Kenzie Maloney is averaging 4.03 digs per set to lead the Husker defense.
• Freshman middle blocker Callie Schwarzenbach ranks ninth in the nation and second in the Big Ten with 1.51 blocks per set. Schwarzenbach had 13 blocks in a 3-1 win over New Mexico on Sept. 14, the most in the NCAA in a four-set match this season.
• Since debuting for the Huskers on Sept. 14, Lexi Sun has put up 3.02 kills per set and 2.53 digs per set.
• Freshman setter Nicklin Hames has 14 double-doubles through 20 matches and is averaging 10.00 assists and 3.11 digs per set.
• Sophomore opposite hitter Jazz Sweet is second on the team in total kills and is producing 2.67 kills per set.
• Sophomore middle blocker Lauren Stivrins is averaging 2.00 kills on a team-best .379 hitting percentage to go with 1.03 blocks per set.
• John Cook, Nebraska: 19th year at Nebraska (546-74); 26th year overall (707-147)
• Geoff Carlston, Ohio State: 11th year at Ohio State (220-143); 19th year overall (413-207)
• Nebraska is 13-7 all-time against Ohio State. The Huskers won the only meeting last year, 3-1, on Nov. 17 in Columbus. NU has won two in a row in Columbus after losing three straight in the series from 2014-16.
Scouting Ohio State
• Ohio State is 12-10 overall and 3-7 in the Big Ten.
• The Buckeyes were swept on the road by both Indiana and Purdue last weekend. Ohio State has lost four of its last five matches. Its Big Ten wins are against Michigan State, Rutgers and Penn State.
• Vanja Bukilic leads the team with 3.00 kills per set. Mia Grunze adds 2.70 kills per set, and Lauren Witte averages 2.50 kills per set.
• Ohio State’s hitting percentage this season is .225, which ranks ninth in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes are allowing opponents to hit .225, ranking 13th in the Big Ten.
Foecke, Maloney Captain Young Husker Squad
• Seniors Mikaela Foecke and Kenzie Maloney are co-captaining the 2018 Husker squad. Foecke and Maloney are the lone players on the team who have been part of both the 2015 and 2017 NCAA Championship teams, and the duo will look to become the first in program history to appear in four straight final fours and win three national championships.
• Foecke, an outside hitter from West Point, Iowa, was selected the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Championship in both 2015 and 2017 after leading the Huskers to their fourth and fifth NCAA titles all-time.
• Foecke became the fourth player in NCAA history to twice be named the MOP - as she also earned the honor in 2015 - and she was the first to earn the honor in non-consecutive years.
• Foecke was named an AVCA second-team All-American and was unanimously selected to the All-Big Ten team and was an AVCA All-North Region pick for the third straight year in 2017.
• Foecke was a unanimous preseason All-Big Ten selection entering her senior season. She had a career-high 25 kills on .351 hitting with 13 digs at Creighton on Sept. 6, earning Big Ten Co-Player of the Week honors for the first of two times this season.
• Foecke leads the Huskers with 3.65 kills per set on .301 hitting with 2.52 digs per set. She ranks eighth on Nebraska’s career kills list with 1,444, which also ranks fourth in the rally scoring era (2001 to present). Her 118 career aces are 10th-most in school history in the rally scoring era.
• Maloney, a libero from Louisville, Kentucky, was named to the NCAA Championship All-Tournament team in 2017 and was a PrepVolleyball.com first-team All-American after serving a school-record 13 aces during the NCAA Tournament.
• In her first season as NU’s libero in 2017, Maloney played all 125 sets and averaged 3.62 digs per set and 0.95 aces per set with season totals of 452 digs and 37 aces, second-most on the team.
• Maloney was named to the preseason All-Big Ten team this year. She is averaging a team-high 4.03 digs per set and had a career-high 25 digs in a win at No. 14 Creighton and at No. 3 Minnesota.
• Maloney became the 11th Husker all-time to reach 1,000 career digs when she did so against Missouri State on Sept. 15. She now has 1,172 career digs, eighth-most in school history.
Stivrins, Sweet Stepping Up in Sophomore Seasons
• After earning All-Big Ten Freshman team honors in 2017, middle blocker Lauren Stivrins and opposite hitter Jazz Sweet are both playing bigger roles as sophomores in the program.
• Stivrins is averaging 2.00 kills per set on a team-best .379 hitting percentage to go with 1.03 blocks per set. She added serving to her repertoire this season and has 17 aces.
• Stivrins finished the 2017 season with 2.07 kills per set on .309 hitting and 1.02 blocks per set while playing all 125 sets. She tallied nine kills on .316 hitting against Florida in the NCAA Championship match and had seven kills and a career-high nine blocks in the NCAA Semifinal vs. Penn State.
• Stivrins picked up her first-career Big Ten Player of the Week honor after becoming the third Husker in school history to post a 1.000 hitting percentage with at least 10 kills when she went 10-for-10 in a sweep of Northwestern on Sept. 28.
• Sweet also played in all 125 sets last season and had 2.22 kills per set on .273 hitting in her first year as a Husker. Sweet posted 12 kills on .375 hitting against Penn State in the NCAA Semifinal.
• This year, Sweet moved into the starting lineup for the Big Red and is third on the team in kills per set at 2.67. Sweet also has 64 blocks this season, third-most on the team behind only the two middles.
Sun Shining for Huskers
• Nebraska added sophomore outside hitter Lexi Sun to its attack in the offseason. The University of Texas transfer was a 2017 first-team All-Big 12 selection and received All-America honorable mention in her freshman season with the Longhorns. A native of Encinitas, California, Sun was the PrepVolleyball.com National Player of the Year, the Gatorade Player of the Year and the All-USA Volleyball Player of the Year as a senior at Santa Fe Christian.
• Sun made her Husker debut on Sept. 14 against New Mexico. She had 13 kills on .346 hitting with five digs, and she followed that the next day with nine kills on .368 hitting with seven digs against Missouri State.
• Sun is playing all six rotations for the Huskers and is averaging 3.02 kills and 2.53 digs per set.
Young Huskers Making Instant Impact
• Eight of the 15 Huskers on the roster are new to the team this season, and five are freshmen.
• Setter Nicklin Hames has started every match and has 14 double-doubles. The Knoxville, Tennessee native is averaging 10.00 assists and 3.11 digs per set. Her 26 service aces are second-most on the team.
• Middle blocker Callie Schwarzenbach has started every match and leads the team in blocks with 1.51 per set.
• Defensive specialist Megan Miller has played in 13 matches and is providing 1.26 digs per set, as well as seven aces from the service line.
• Outside hitter Capri Davis has played in 11 matches and was huge for the Huskers in a 3-2 comeback win at No. 14 Creighton, providing 18 kills.
• Defensive specialist Chen Abramovich made her first collegiate appearance against Wake Forest on Aug. 31.
Smith Makes Return to Huskers
• Senior setter Brooke Smith was part of the Huskers’ 2015 NCAA Championship team and 2016 Big Ten Championship team. She played the 2017 season at Kansas State before transferring back to Nebraska for her senior season this year. Smith was cleared by the NCAA to start playing for the Huskers on Sept. 7 and has played in eight matches, recording six assists and one ace.
Huskers Will Play School-Record 19 Home Matches
• Nebraska will play a school-record 19 regular-season home matches in 2018.
• Nine of the Huskers’ 10 non-conference matches were played at the Devaney Center this season. The only road trip was to Omaha, where NU beat Creighton, 3-2, on Thursday, Sept. 6.
• The 2018 season marked the first time the Huskers didn’t play a non-conference match outside of Nebraska since 2007.
Huskers Aiming for 250th Consecutive Regular-Season Sellout
• Nebraska carries an NCAA women’s record 248 consecutive regular-season sellouts. Should the Huskers continue to sell out, their 250th straight sellout would be on Friday, Nov. 2 against Penn State.
Huskers Ranked No. 9 in AVCA Coaches Poll
• Nebraska is ranked No. 9 in the AVCA Coaches Poll this week.
• The Huskers have been ranked No. 1 in 99 all-time polls, the most in NCAA history.
• The Huskers have been ranked in the top 10 a total of 480 times, which is also the most in NCAA history.
• Nebraska has appeared in all 535 AVCA Coaches Polls since it was established in 1982. Nebraska and Stanford are the only two programs to be ranked in every poll all-time.
Cook Adds to Legacy; Joins AVCA Hall of Fame
• Nebraska head coach John Cook is in his 19th season as the Nebraska volleyball head coach in 2018. He has led the Huskers to four national championships, eight final fours, 12 conference championships and 16 top-10 final rankings since 2000. Cook has 707 career wins and is one of the all-time winningest coaches in NCAA history.
• Since taking over the program in 2000, Cook has led the Huskers to a nation-leading .881 win percentage in that time (546-74).
• Under Cook, the Huskers have achieved 52 AVCA All-Americans and 19 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans, both among the best in the nation. He is a two-time AVCA National Coach of the Year, earning the prestigious honor in 2000 and 2005, and a seven-time conference coach of the year, including Big Ten Coach of the Year in 2016 and 2017, his first and second Big Ten honors with the Huskers in their Big Ten era (2011-present).
• Cook was named the AVCA North Region Coach of the Year in 2016, his fifth career regional coaching honor and fourth while at Nebraska.
• Cook is one of only four active coaches - and one of six all-time - to be a two-time AVCA National Coach of the Year and was honored in 2008 by USA Volleyball, receiving its All-Time Great Coach Award.
• Cook was inducted into the AVCA Hall of Fame in 2017, joining former Husker volleyball coach Terry Pettit in the hall.
• Cook became the 10th active Division I head coach to reach 700 career wins with the Huskers’ eighth win of the season on Sept. 14 against New Mexico. Cook is one of 27 Division I coaches all-time to have reached the 700-win mark.
• Cook passed former Husker head coach and AVCA Hall of Famer Terry Pettit on the all-time career wins list earlier this season. Pettit finished his career with 694 career wins, which Cook passed on Aug. 31 when Nebraska beat Wake Forest.
Husker Fans Set Attendance Standard Once Again
• Nebraska fans led the nation in attendance for a fifth straight season in 2017, averaging 8,202 fans per match, nearly 2,000 more than any other school.
• In 2016, the Huskers also led the nation with an average attendance of 8,210 fans per match, a new NCAA attendance record.
• In 2013, the Huskers led the nation in attendance (8,175) for the first time since 1992, ending Hawaii’s 21-year reign as the national leader.
• The Huskers repeated as attendance champions in 2014 with 8,083 fans per match, which included a school-record 8,585 fans at the Oct. 3 win against Penn State.
• Nebraska has ranked in the top three nationally in attendance every season since 1990 (27 straight seasons).
Cook’s Coaching Tree Continues to Grow
• Nebraska head coach John Cook’s assistant coaches have a great track record of moving on to become head coaches.
• Following the 2017 season, Husker assistant Tyler Hildebrand was named the Director of Coaching, Beach Volleyball for USA Volleyball in his home state of California.
• After the 2016 season, Nebraska assistants Chris Tamas and Dani Busboom Kelly both accepted high-level Division I head coaching jobs. Busboom Kelly became the head coach at Louisville, while Tamas accepted the head coaching job at Big Ten foe Illinois. Tamas led his Fighting Illini squad to the Sweet 16 in his first year, while Busboom Kelly made the NCAA Tournament with Louisville and was named the AVCA East Region Coach of the Year.
• Seven assistants under Cook have become head coaches following their time on Cook’s Nebraska staff: Craig Skinner (Kentucky), Lee Maes (Virginia), Lizzy Stemke (Georgia), Dan Conners (UC Davis), Dan Meske (Augustana, Associate Head Coach at Louisville), Busboom Kelly and Tamas.
• In the last eight years, five of Cook’s Husker assistants have become head coaches. with her 1.60 blocks per set.
Foecke Named Senior CLASS Award Candidate
• Thirty NCAA women’s volleyball student-athletes, including Nebraska outside hitter Mikaela Foecke, were selected on Oct. 1 as candidates for the 2018 Senior CLASS Award in collegiate volleyball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
• An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
• A native of West Point, Iowa, Foecke carries a 3.649 GPA majoring in animal science and is a two-time NCAA Championship most outstanding player, making her one of only four volleyball players in NCAA history to accomplish that feat. Foecke was an AVCA second-team All-American in 2017 after leading the Huskers to their second NCAA Championship in three years. Foecke has excelled both on and off the court in her four years at Nebraska, as she is a three-time academic All-Big Ten selection and has received Nebraska’s high honors (silver) academic medallion twice.
Nebraska Volleyball Retires Jersey of Sarah Pavan
• Nebraska volleyball retired the jersey of one of the most decorated student-athletes in NCAA history, Sarah Pavan, on Sept. 9 after the Huskers’ win over Iowa State. She became the ninth volleyball player in school history to have her jersey retired. Pavan was also inducted into the Nebraska Athletic Hall of Fame that weekend.
• The Kitchener, Ontario native is NU’s all-time leader in kills (2,008) and kills per match (4.56). She is one of five players in NCAA history to be named a four-time first-team AVCA All-American, and she helped lead the Huskers win the 2006 NCAA Championship.
• Pavan was the AVCA National Player of the Year, a three-time Big 12 Player of the Year, a two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American of the Year and the Honda Broderick Cup winner, given to the best female student-athlete in the country. She earned a 4.0 GPA majoring in biochemistry. Pavan went on to compete in the 2016 Olympics in Brazil, representing Canada in beach volleyball.
Nebraska's Hannah Whitish was named to the 12-player All-Big Ten Team by the conference coaches when the annual preseason honors were announced on Monday, Oct. 22.
The announcement of the preseason teams marked the tip-off of Big Ten Women's Basketball Media Week (@B1GWBBall) on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Whitish, a 5-9 junior guard from Barneveld, Wis., led Nebraska in scoring (12.6 ppg) and assists (4.7 apg) as a sophomore in 2017-18. She owned a 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio as Nebraska's point guard while also ranking among the Big Ten's best three-point shooters. Whitish played a major role in lifting Nebraska to the nation's top turnaround in the win column last season, as the Huskers recorded 14 more victories (21) in 2017-18 than in 2016-17 (7). She captured second-team All-Big Ten accolades at the end of last season while helping Nebraska to the NCAA Tournament.
Whitish was the lone Husker honored by the league in preseason voting of the conference coaches.
The Big Ten Conference does not rank its team's No. 1 through No. 14 in preseason voting, instead the coaches and select media members each choose their projected top-three teams in the league.
Maryland is the preseason pick of the coaches and the media to win the Big Ten, while Iowa was picked No. 2 by both the coaches and media. The league coaches chose Michigan in the No. 3 spot, while the conference media selected Minnesota. Iowa senior center Megan Gustafson, the reigning Big Ten Player of the Year, was chosen by the coaches to repeat that honor. Gustafson, Maryland's Kaila Charles, Michigan's Hallie Thome and Minnesota's Kenisha Bell were all unanimous preseason all-conference selections by the coaches.
2018-19 COACHES PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN TEAM*
Hannah Whitish, Jr., G, Nebraska
Alex Wittinger, Sr., F, Illinois
Kathleen Doyle, Jr., G, Iowa
Megan Gustafson, Sr., F, Iowa
Kaila Charles, Jr., G, Maryland
Hallie Thome, Sr., C, Michigan
Shay Colley, Jr., G, Michigan State
Kenisha Bell, Sr., G, Minnesota
Pallas Kunaiyi-Akpanah, Sr., F, Northwestern
Teniya Page, Sr., G, Penn State
Ae’Rianna Harris, Jr., F, Purdue
Dominique Oden, Jr., G, Purdue
Whitish and the Huskers will hit the court for the first time together at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Tuesday night for a free Open Practice. Doors at the arena open at 6:45 p.m., and the practice is expected to last until approximately 8 p.m. Autograph opportunities will follow the practice.
Season tickets for Nebraska women's basketball are on sale now at Huskers.com.
Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez was honored Monday as co-Big Ten Freshman of the Week. Martinez shined in Nebraska’s 53-28 victory over Minnesota, leading a Nebraska offense that put together its highest point total ever in a Big Ten Conference game. Martinez shared the honor with Purdue freshman receiver Rondale Moore.
Martinez completed 25-of-29 passes for 276 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing for another 125 yards and a touchdown. Martinez’s 401 yards of total offense marked his third 400-yard total offense effort in the past four weeks and he has already tied the Nebraska career record for 400-yard games.
In the passing game, Martinez’s 25-of-29 effort against the Gophers set a Nebraska record for best completion percentage in a game with a minimum of 20 attempts. The previous record was held by Dave Humm and stood for 44 years. The 86.2 percent completion percentage was also the best in the country this season for any quarterback with more than 25 pass attempts.
Martinez’s effort paced Nebraska to 659 yards of total offense, the Huskers’ most since the 2014 season opener against Florida Atlantic. It was Nebraska’s highest total offense output in a Big Ten Conference game and its most in any conference game since 2007 against Kansas State.
In addition to his Big Ten honor, Martinez was also honored by the College Football Performance Awards as the CFPA Co-National Performer of the Week.
Lincoln - The Nebraska football team exorcised its demons to thwart a second-half Minnesota comeback attempt and roll to a 53-28 win over the visiting Gophers on Saturday afternoon at Memorial Stadium.
The Huskers scored early and often against a Minnesota defense that stymied and slowed No. 3 Ohio State's high-powered offense last week, as Nebraska notched its first win of the season to the delight 89,272 fans in the 365th consecutive sellout at Memorial Stadium. Roars of "Go Big Red" echoed through the crowd to cheer the Huskers off the field following Coach Scott Frost's first victory as Nebraska's head coach.
Nebraska's 25-point win included several stat lines that stirred the echoes of days of Husker past, including three Big Red rushers each rolling up more than 100 yards on the afternoon. Senior running Devine Ozigbo erupted for 152 yards on just 12 carries with two long touchdown runs, including a career-long 59-yarder, to set the tone in the first half.
True freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez sprinted for a career-high 125 yards and a score on just 15 carries, including a career-long 57-yard run.
Fellow freshman Maurice Washington completed the triple 100-yard day for Big Red backs with 109 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. His three-yard plunge late in the game capped the most explosive offensive day for the Huskers since joining the Big Ten Conference in 2011. The last time Nebraska featured three 100-yard rushers came in a 56-21 win at Washington on Sept. 18, 2010, when quarterback Taylor Martinez and running backs Roy Helu Jr. and Rex Burkhead each went over the century mark.
In fact, the 53 points scored by the Huskers were their most against a Big Ten foe since joining the conference and the most against any conference team since scoring 56 at Big 12 foe Kansas State on Nov. 15, 2008. It marked the most points scored by Nebraska against a Big Ten team since hanging 66 on Northwestern in the Alamo Bowl on Dec. 30, 2000.
Overall, Nebraska rolled up a season-best 659 yards of total offense, including 383 rushing yards on just 43 carries, averaging 8.9 yards per carry on the afternoon.
Adrian Martinez amassed more than 400 yards of total offense for the third time in six games to open his career, completing 25-of-29 passes for 276 yards and three touchdowns. After completing 16-of-19 passes in the first half, Martinez went 9-for-10 passing for 152 with two touchdowns in the second half. He finished with 401 total yards, and his three games with more than 400 total-offense yards ties the Nebraska individual career record set by Joe Ganz.
Senior wide receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. also had a huge day, hauling in a career-best 10 receptions for 163 yards and two scores, including a 67-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter that put the game out of reach for the Huskers. Sophomore JD Spielman added eight catches for 77 yards and a score of his own.
While the offense shined, the defense stood strong against several Golden Gopher penetrations into the red zone. On the opening play of the fourth quarter, Minnesota tried to cut into Nebraska's 36-22 lead on 4th-and-Goal from the NU 3, but Dicaprio Bootle broke up Tanner Morgan's pass attempt to Chris Autman-Bell.
Then Martinez and the Husker offense went on a 14-play, 82-yard march that consumed 7:03 off the clock and culminated with Barret Pickering's 32-yard field to give Nebraska a 39-22 lead.
The Husker faithful erupted after the Pickering field goal and breathed a collective sigh of relief, but Minnesota was back on the Big Red's doorstep seconds later after Demetrius Douglas' 87-yard kickoff return to the NU 13. Minnesota started with a short field and 7:39 on the clock, but after a short pass was complete from Morgan to Autman-Bell, Blackshirt defensive back Aaron Williams deflected a Morgan pass that was intercepted by Blackshirt linebacker Dedrick Young II in the end zone to silence a golden opportunity for the Gophers.
Instead of trying to milk the clock, the attacking Husker offense ended any late comeback hopes for Minnesota. After a 13-yard run by Washington on the second play of the ensuing drive, Martinez hit a streaking Stanley Morgan down the middle of the field for a 67-yard touchdown that sent Nebraska fans dancing in the aisles.
Linebacker Mohamed Barry led the Blackshirts with 11 tackles on the afternoon, while safety Tre Neal contributed 10 stops and senior linebacker Luke Gifford added nine. Young pitched in seven tackles to go along with his interception.
The Huskers put together their best half of football this season, jumping out to a 28-0 lead before Minnesota got a touchdown and a two-point conversion in the final minute, as Nebraska took a 28-8 lead to the locker room at halftime.
The Huskers were on the attack from the opening kickoff, sprinting 75 yards in seven plays capped by Ozigbo's 40-yard touchdown run to give the Big Red a quick 7-0 lead less than two minutes into the game.
Minnesota crossed midfield on its opening drive and appeared to tie the score on Rashod Bateman's 37-yard touchdown catch from Annexstad with 8:13 left in the opening quarter. However, that play was wiped out by the first accepted holding call by a Husker Big Ten opponent on a passing play in the last 22 games. The Blackshirts capitalized, forcing a punt on 4th-and-24 by the Golden Gophers.
The two defenses then exchanged stops, before Martinez and the Huskers went back to work. After a pair of short completions to Morgan and Spielman gave Nebraska a first down, Washington sprinted 17 yards to the NU 41 for another first down. On the next play, Ozigbo uncorked the longest run of his career and the longest run from scrimmage by a Husker this season, galloping 59 yards to paydirt to give Nebraska a 14-0 lead with 1:25 left in the first quarter.
The Huskers went to the second quarter without committing a penalty, the first time they played a penalty-free quarter this season.
In the second quarter, Martinez and the Huskers kept rolling by flying 85 yards in nine plays capped by a three-yard touchdown run from Martinez to push their lead to 21-0 with 11:40 left in the half. At the time, it was Nebraska's biggest lead of the season but that mark would grow later in the quarter when Martinez hit Spielman on a nine-yard touchdown strike to cap a five-play, 72-yard drive to give the Big Red a 28-0 lead. The quick drive by Nebraska included a 57-yard run by Martinez, the longest run of his career.
Nebraska finished the half with 398 yards of total offense on 41 plays, including 274 rushing yards on 21 carries. Ozigbo led the Big Red with 139 yards on just seven carries, while Martinez added 89 yards on nine carries. Washington contributed 46 yards on five totes in the half.
Martinez went 16-of-19 for 124 passing yards and a score in the opening 30 minutes.
The Blackshirts held Minnesota to 172 total yards on 38 first-half plays, with 68 of those yards coming on the Gophers' final drive of the half. The Huskers led at the half despite Minnesota owning a 16:28-13:32 edge in time of possession and a massive 38-16 edge in average starting field position for the Gophers in the first half.
For the game, Minnesota finished with a slight 30:58-29:02 edge in time of possession, but the Gophers still finished with an overall starting field position edge for the game of 38-19.
While the Huskers have struggled in the turnover and penalty departments throughout the first half of the season, Nebraska played Minnesota even in turnover margin with both teams committing just one turnover. Meanwhile, Nebraska was flagged for a season-best six penalties for a season-low 43 yards. Minnesota committed eight penalties for 80 yards.
Nebraska will shoot for its second straight home win next Saturday when the Huskers play host to Bethune-Cookman. Kickoff against the Wildcats is set for 11 a.m. at Memorial Stadium with live TV coverage by BTN.
Nebraska 53, Minnesota 28
Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018
Memorial Stadium (Lincoln, Neb.)
First Quarter (14-0)
13:04 - NEB - Devine Ozigbo 40 run (Barret Pickering kick), 7 plays, 75 yards, 1:56, NEB 7-0
1:25 - NEB - Ozigbo 59 run (Pickering kick), 4 plays, 90 yards, 1:10, NEB 14-0
Second Quarter (28-8)
11:40 - NEB - Adrian Martinez 3 run (Pickering kick), 9 plays, 85 yards, 3:08, NEB 21-0
1:58 - NEB - JD Spielman 9 pass from Martinez (Pickering kick), 5 plays, 72 yards, 2:25, NEB 28-0
0:52 - MINN - Demetrius Douglas 13 pass from Zack Annexstad (Matt Morse 2PAT run), 8 plays, 68 yards, 0:59, NEB 28-8
Third Quarter (36-22)
13:49 - MINN - Mohamed Ibrahim 1 run (Carpenter kick), 4 plays, 75 yards, 1:11, NEB 28-15
7:22 - MINN - Seth Green 4 run (Carpenter kick), 8 plays, 79 yards, 3:48, NEB 28-22
6:04 - NEB - Stanley Morgan Jr. 35 pass from Martinez (Morgan 2PAT pass from Martinez), 4 plays, 74 yards, 1:12, NEB 36-22
Fourth Quarter (53-28)
7:53 - NEB - Pickering 32 FG, 14 plays, 82 yards, 7:03, NEB 39-22
5:19 - NEB - Morgan 67 pass from Martinez (Pickering kick), 3 plays, 80 yards, 1:33 NEB 46-22
4:14 - MINN - Tanner Morgan 9 run (Morgan 2PAT run failed), 3 plays, 44 yards, 1:01, NEB 46-28
1:57 - NEB - Maurice Washington 3 run (Pickering kick), 5 plays, 32 yards, 2:16, NEB 53-28
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - The fifth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team dropped a hard-fought road match at No. 3 Minnesota, 3-1 (25-19, 23-25, 23-25, 18-25), on Saturday night in front of a crowd of 5,467 at Maturi Pavilion.
The Huskers (15-5, 6-4 Big Ten) got off to a strong start with a decisive win in the first set. After trailing by eight in set two, the Huskers came all the way back and held a 23-22 lead, but momentum shifted after the Gophers scored three points to end the set. Minnesota (16-2, 10-0 Big Ten) thwarted another Husker comeback attempt in a deuce game in set three, and the Gophers pulled away in the fourth set.
Nebraska is the first team to take a set off the Gophers on their home court this season, and the Huskers are the only Big Ten team to win a set against the Gophers, which they've done twice, through the midway point of the conference schedule.
Mikaela Foecke had 17 kills and 10 digs, while Jazz Sweet had 13 kills. Lauren Stivrins matched her career high with 12 kills and hit .423, and Lexi Sun and Callie Schwarzenbach each had eight kills. Nicklin Hames had 54 assists and 12 digs to guide the Huskers to a .210 hitting percentage. Kenzie Maloney tied her career high with 25 digs.
Minnesota got 20 kills on .404 hitting and 14 digs from Adanna Rollins. Stephanie Samedy added 13 kills. The Gophers hit .253 and had just 13 attack errors, while the Huskers endured 25.
Set 1: Megan Miller made her first start since Sept. 14 and served a 5-0 run that included an ace to put the Huskers ahead 11-8. A kill by Foecke and a Minnesota hitting error increased the lead to 13-8. Schwarzenbach blasted a kill and combined with Sun for a block, then Foecke served an ace to make it 20-14 Huskers. A trio of Husker hitting errors and a kill by Hart cut the lead to 20-18, but Sun earned sideout for the Huskers and Sweet and Stivrins followed with kills for a 23-18 Husker lead. Sun's fourth kill earned the Huskers set point at 24-19, and a Sun and Stivrins block ended it in NU's favor, 25-19. NU had three aces and allowed none and out-hit the Gophers .211 to .098.
Set 2: The Gophers claimed a 10-5 lead after three straight kills and a Husker hitting error. Minnesota pushed the lead to 16-8 after its third ace of the set and a block. After a timeout, the Huskers went on a 6-0 run with Hayley Densberger serving. Stivrins had kills on three straight rallies, and Hames added a kill to pull the Big Red within 16-14. Trailing 20-18, Nebraska got three straight kills from Foecke to go ahead 21-20 and cap a 13-4 Husker run. The teams traded sideouts to 23-23, but Minnesota gained set point at 24-23 after stuffing a Husker attack. A Husker hitting error gave Minnesota the 25-23 win.
Set 3: Minnesota carried the momentum from its set two win into set three, taking a 7-1 lead. The Huskers answered with a 9-4 spurt to pull within 11-10 after Schwarzenbach found the corner. Sun blasted a kill from the left side to draw the Huskers even at 14-14, but nine straight sideouts followed before Minnesota gained a 21-18 edge after winning consecutive long rallies. But Foecke and Sun notched kills, and Sun teamed with Schwarzenbach for a block to level the score at 21-21. Minnesota went back up 23-21 before a Sweet kill, but the Gophers then gained set point at 24-22. Sweet placed a shot to the back of the court to make it 24-23, but Hart connected for Minnesota after a timeout for another 25-23 win.
Set 4: Stivrins and Foecke combined for four early kills, and Hames had one as well as an ace to lift the Huskers to a 6-4 lead. The Gophers came back to take a 12-11 lead, but Foecke posted a pair of kills to regain the lead for NU. Hart then answered for Minnesota with back-to-back kills, and later a Gopher ace increased their lead to 16-14. The Gophers pulled away to a 22-16 lead with a 6-1 run, keyed by two service aces and a pair of kills, and finished the match with a 25-18 win.
Up Next: The Huskers play their fourth straight match on the road, at Ohio State on Wednesday at 6 p.m. (CT). The match will be televised on BTN and will air on the Husker Sports Network.
LINCOLN, Neb. | PORTLAND, Ore. – The University of Nebraska Huskers and adidas Football today unveiled the new adidas Primeknit A1 ‘Memorial Tribute’ alternate uniforms, which will make their on-field debut for the Cornhuskers’ game against Illinois on Saturday, November 10.
2018 marks 100 years since the culmination of World War I (WWI). The new adidas Primeknit A1 ‘Memorial Tribute’ alternate uniforms pay tribute to the 100th anniversary of the end of the WWI and celebrates Memorial Stadium. The venue was originally named Memorial Stadium to honor more than 700 Nebraskans who died in WWI and those who served in the Civil War, Spanish-American Wars. Memorial Stadium also honors Nebraskans who served in WWII, Korea, Vietnam and more.
In collaboration with University of Nebraska Athletics, the new adidas Primeknit A1 ‘Memorial Tribute’ alternate uniform was specifically inspired by the first team to play in Memorial Stadium and continues the school’s age-old tradition of honoring Nebraska’s veterans. The field hosted its first football game on October 20, 1923 and this will be the Huskers’ 96th season at the stadium.
Similar to the 1923 Huskers’ jerseys, the 2018 Nebraska ‘Memorial Tribute’ uniform features a throwback tonal, paneled front. The buff-colored pant is designed to resemble the first façade of Memorial Stadium, which was also a characteristic of the 1923 uniform. Additionally, the newalternate uniform showcases key aspects of the 85,000-seat arena, including the numbers and fonts which were inspired by the original clock in Memorial Stadium.
Four quotes are inscribed on each corner of Nebraska’s stadium that communicate honor and glory of the state’s fallen heroes. University of Nebraska Athletics chose to showcase the quote in the Southwest corner, which is centered above each number on the new jerseys. It reads, “Not the victory but the action; Not the goal but the game; In the deed the glory.” The words have gone on to become famous among Husker Nation and are a motto for the team.
Merging style and innovation, the Huskers’ new adidas Primeknit A1 ‘’Memorial Tribute’ alternate football uniform redefines the compression silhouette and takes the innovation and design of football jerseys and pants to the next level, with an emphasis on full range of motion, fit, form and function.
A new body-mapping jersey design features an all-new ribbed knit pattern on the chest and shoulder pads to produce a refined fit, while knit engineered mesh channels feature Climacool technology to provide enhanced breathability and cooling zones. The development of a new innovative chevron pattern on the chest of the jersey aligns with a player’s shoulder pads and generates increased durability for high-contact zones for protection and the inside of the jersey features silicon grip patterns on the shoulders to lock the pads in place.
Delivering a clean, iconic look, Primeknit finishes inspired by the adidas UltraBOOST and NMD are incorporated into the collar, while sleeve cuff and hem for added comfort and a new infinity neckline eliminates distractions and allows for a full range of motion. Additionally, the revolutionary Primeknit A1 football pants have been re-engineered with just two seams and bonded pockets for added comfort and a clean compression look and feel, along ribbed Primeknit on the knees for added durability.
To complete the head-to-toe look, the team will wear a replica 1923 helmet with a contemporary form, complete with cream-white stitched strapping details, along with traditional black adizero 5-Star and FREAK cleats.
For more info on the Cornshuskers’ new adidas Primeknit A1 ‘Memorial Tribute’ alternate uniform, visit http://news.adidas.com/US and join the conversation on Twitter and Instagram via@HuskerNBNation, @Huskersand @adidasFball #teamadidas.
Lincoln, Neb. -- The Nebraska football team practiced for approximately two hours on Thursday inside the Hawks Championship Center in helmets only.
Head Coach Scott Frost addressed the media after practice to discuss how the team's week of preparation has gone.
"I think we had our best of week practice ever again. So, if our goal is to get better day by day, it's been a good week,” Frost said. “We're not super deep so we can't just run these guys into the ground. I think we've gone far enough making some improvements that we can afford to let the guys recover a little bit, and we'll try to be smart the rest of the year."
Frost was then asked to expand upon his belief that this was the team’s best week of practice.
"I've said a few times I think the Purdue game was a real turning point for us from a culture standpoint. Everybody seems happy, seems to be fighting together, seems to get what it takes to do the little things the right way, to give yourselves a chance," Frost explained. "The detail has been better, the efforts been better. Understanding what we're trying to accomplish scheme-wise is getting better. There's a lot of things that the guys have improved."
As for Saturday’s game at Northwestern, Frost was asked about the Huskers’ defensive approach against a Northwestern team who ran the ball only eight times in a win over No. 19 Michigan State last week. The Wildcats are without the services of starting running back Jeremy Larkin, who retired due to injury.
"I don't want to say they're going to be one-dimensional because they've been a really good running team before,” Frost said. “I don’t know how much of the run versus pass ratio for them (was) their situation or how much of it was the teams they were playing. We’ve got to be good against the run. Wins start with being able to run the ball and stop the run. I don't really think they're going to be one-dimensional. If they are (one-dimensional) then we need to do a good job in the pass game, and they're really efficient at that."
Nebraska will finish preparations with a helmets-only walk-through on Friday. The Huskers face off against Northwestern on Saturday at 11 a.m. C with the Big Ten Network providing television coverage.
Chicago -- University of Nebraska guard James Palmer Jr. was honored Thursday morning, as he was named to the preseason All-Big Ten team. The team was announced prior to the start of the Big Ten Media Day here in Chicago.
Palmer, a returning first-team All-Big Ten selection, is one of three returning starters back for the Huskers, as he averaged 17.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game in leading the Huskers to a 22-11 record in 2017-18. Palmer reached double figures in 31 of 33 games, including a career-high 34-point effort at Ohio State.
He is one of only five returning power conference plays who averaged 17.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg and 3.0 apg last season, while his 18.8 points per game in conference play is not only the most of any returning Big Ten player, it is the highest returning total by a Big Ten player since the 2012-13 season.
Palmer, a 6-foot-6, 207-pounder from Upper Marlboro, Md., will look to be Nebraska’s first two-time first-team All-conference performer since Eric Piatkowski in 1993 and 1994.
2018-19 PRESEASON BIG TEN PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Carsen Edwards, Jr., G, Purdue
2018-19 PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN TEAM
Romeo Langford, Fr., G, Indiana
Juwan Morgan, Sr., F, Indiana
Anthony Cowan Jr., Jr., G, Maryland
Charles Matthews, Sr., G, Michigan
Nick Ward, Jr., F, Michigan State
Cassius Winston, Jr., G, Michigan State
Jordan Murphy, Sr., F, Minnesota
James Palmer Jr, Sr., G, Nebraska
CARSEN EDWARDS, Jr., G, Purdue
ETHAN HAPP, Sr., F, Wisconsin