Colorado Buffaloes: Winning in Nebraska Still Feels Great

Colorado Football(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
Colorado Football(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images) /

We thought we were done with this.  We thought we’d moved on from Nebraska.  With some last-minute heroics from the Colorado Buffaloes, we found out we’d thought wrong.

When CU jumped out to a 14-0 lead off two costly ‘Husker turnovers, it looked like the romp was on.  Longtime Buffs fans were uncomfortable, though, without the turnovers, Nebraska was moving the ball at-will.

Cornhusker frosh phenom Adrian Martinez was shredding the Colorado defense and finished 15-for-20 with 187 yards and a touchdown in the air and 117 yards and 2 TD on the ground before exiting in the fourth quarter with a knee injury.  Nebraska and first-year coach Scott Frost rebounded nicely from the opening quarter mistakes.

For the Buffs, the stars from the Colorado State game were stars against Nebraska on both sides of the ball.

Sophomore Laviska Shenault, just two games into the season, has established himself as not only the go-to receiver for CU quarterback Steven Montez, he may be the latest in a great history of receivers from Colorado.  From Cliff Branch to Mike Pritchard.  Phil Savoy to DJ Hackett. Scotty McKnight, Rae Carruth, Charles Johnson, Paul Richardson, Colorado has had it’s share of greatness at wideout.  Thinking of that list, it’s not unreasonable to claim Shenault as a possibility to top it.  He is that good.

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On the defensive side, after a slow start, Nate Landman had another huge game with 13 tackles (two for loss) and big plays when the Buffs needed it most.  If Colorado has a position that’s its most successful, it would be linebacker.

The reputation of that storied group, particularly the inside guys like Greg Biekert and Matt Russell is carried on by super-soph Landman.  Nate’s interception with 6 minutes left gave the Buffs the momentum they needed to surge late in the fourth.

Like the days when the CU-NU game was the Friday after Thanksgiving, this game was a gut-wrencher until Shenault’s 40-yard touchdown with just over a minute remaining. Shenault finished the day on that catch with 10 catches for 177 yards and that TD.

Of note, Colorado coach Mike McIntyre was emotionally overcome after the game.  It was CU’s first win against the Big Red since 2007, something assistant coach Darian Hagan had to have been happy about.

McIntyre also got to see his son Jay haul in 8 passes for 45 yards and two huge touchdowns.  Hagan made sure the Buffaloes players understood the gravity of the rivalry.

Colorado moves on to a contest with New Hampshire at Folsom.  Like any good program, the Buffs are already into prep for that game but the rest of us can take a minute to revel in the glory that is a win over the Cornhuskers.

We’ll leave you with the Buffs singing the fight song, after the game: