Owen Field, Norman, Okla. — Nebraska was very much in the ball game with Oklahoma for 29 minutes here Saturday afternoon.
The score was 7-6 for the Sooners at that point, but the Sooners proved their mastery during the next 31 minutes to come out with a 27-6 victory.
It gave coach Jim Tatum’s rugged club as least a share of the Big Six Conference championship and possibly a trip to the Cotton Bowl.
Arkansas, figuring it will play at Dallas January 1, scouted the Sooners with an eye toward a possible meeting.
It was Oklahoma’s consistently good work between the tackles which spelled the difference. The big Sooner forwards charged briskly, blocked vigorously and tackled with force.
At that, they met their match in a surprisingly-good Nebraska line most of the first half. Tackle Carl Samuelson and guard Fred Lorenz did splendid work against their strong forward rivals.
Carl and Fred took over heavy defensive chores with Joe Partington and Eddie Schwartzkopf not even in suit and fullback Tom Novak in action only for a couple of plays.
Oklahoma’s first goalward march stopped just short of a touchdown when Samuelson recovered a fumble by Joe Golding on the 1-yard line. But Jack Pesek’s punt from deep in the end zone against a strong south wind went out of bounds on the Husker 21.
On the next play fleet Eddie Davis broke through a hole opened by tackle Wade Walker and cut back for a scoring run. Dave Wallace kicked the extra point and that enabled the Sooners in stay in front even after Nebraska’s second-quarter touchdown.
The Huskers borrowed a screen pass play from Indiana to set up the score and preserve a record of never having been shutout this season despite five losses in eight games.
This play started from the Oklahoma 44-yard line. Fred Metheny passed right down the middle to Dick Hutton, who had four or five mates on their feet right in front of him. They shook him loose and he ran for a gain of 29 yards before being stopped on the 15.
Cletus Fischer, in his first game since the Iowa State six weeks ago, scooted through a big hole opened by Samuelson and Lorenz and got to the 3-yard line.
Coach Tatum rushed his regular linemen back into the game but they could not stop the scoring surge. Wally Hopp was stopped at the line but Fischer plowed within inches of the goal line on the next play.
Then Jim Myers slanted off tackle and fell into the end zone. Sam Vacanti came off the bench to attempt a kick which would have tied the score but it was wide.
That 7-6 score stood until the clock showed only 45 seconds left in the first half.
It was a pass play which paved the way for the second Sooner score. Charles Sarratt pitched to Bobby Goad for a 33-yard gain and a first down on the Husker 18. Golding scored four plays later on an of tackle thrust for eight yards.
The Sooners were in complete command in the last half, adding a touchdown in each period. They made an 80-yard march after Pesek’s kickoff into the end zone, with Jack Mitchell running the last 24 yards on a neat cutback play.
Then in the final period Goad received a pass from Darrell Royal for 17 yards and a score.
The Huskers bid for another touchdown in the third quarter, but lost the ball on downs on the Sooner 22 after carrying from their own 23.
A Statue of Liberty play with Hutton carrying for 17 yards was the biggest advance in this bid, but three frantic passes by Vacanti failed.
The Huskers had a total gain of 167 yards from rushing and passing, which was creditable against this great Sooner outfit. But the Sooners rolled up a total gain of 447 yards.
The Huskers will leave Oklahoma City at noon today for their closing game against UCLA at Los Angeles next Saturday.
Nebraska is 38-45 all-time against Oklahoma.
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