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Nebraska's night magic disappears in rout by Wisconsin

09 Octobre 2017

Wisconsin had the right answer each time Nebraska challenged. After an Aaron Williams pick-six, tied the game at 17 in the third quarter, Wisconsin rattled off the game's final 21 points.

It didn't turn out that way.

As was the case all game long, Wisconsin took back the momentum on a 93-yard scoring drive that took more than five minutes off the clock to grab the lead at 24-17.

The victory allowed UW (5-0, 2-0 Big Ten) to move up two spots in the Amway coaches poll to No. 6 on Sunday.

There were a lot of people who viewed Nebraska's showdown against No. 9 Wisconsin on Saturday night as a potentially season-changing game in one way or another. Tanner Lee has thrown for 1,144 yards and 10 touchdowns, but also has nine interceptions.

Though numerous games between the teams have been closely contested, the rivalry never took off in large part because Nebraska's program hasn't been as consistently competitive in the Big Ten as conference officials hoped when the once-proud Cornhuskers program came on board.

After the game, head coach Mike Riley said junior Mikale Wilbon (ankle) could have played but the staff chose to hold him out for another week. "I think we'll have them sooner rather than later".

Will Jones see his role continue to increase going forward and possibly rejoin the starting lineup this week?

Wisconsin had a pick-six of its own when Chris Orr snagged a ball that glanced off intended receiver Ozigbo and returned it 78 yards on the game's fifth play from scrimmage. The Huskers could have accepted an offensive pass interference penalty after forcing an incompletion on third-and-4, but declined and kicker Rafael Gaglianone hit a 37-yard field goal to go up 10-0. "I think we played them well, we just didn't come out with the win". "We gotta finish drives with points and they kept us from doing that today". "We started to play complementary football". We just didn't come out with a win.

After struggling to keep up with the Nebraska offense, Wisconsin held the Huskers to just 51 yards of offense during the third.

Nebraska's run defense: The Badgers didn't attempt a pass over the final 19:56 because they were having no trouble moving the ball on the ground.

Riley also nothed that the Huskers run attack was "feast or famine", but said that junior running back Devine Ozigbo ran hard. But Lee worked with what he had, connecting with JD Spielman on multiple third downs for six catches and a career-high 79 yards.

"I was running a shoot route", Ozigbo said. "I know I have to do my job and trust the guys to do theirs". NU made big plays, but in the end this team was schooled on how a nationally competitive program goes about its business. However, the Wisconsin secondary seemed to always be there when needed, breaking up a number of potentially risky pass attempts that could have lead to Nebraska scores. But I thought Tanner was really sharp. "As I looked, the ball was on me pretty hot".

Safety Antonio Reed hurt his knee, and Riley said he's questionable, leaning towards doubtful heading into Saturday's game against the Buckeyes.

Nebraska's night magic disappears in rout by Wisconsin