Just three games into its rich history, Memorial Stadium saw one of its most thrilling games as Nebraska defeated Notre Dame, 14-7 on Nov. 10, 1923, in This Week in Husker History.
The Irish, coached by Knute Rockne and led by the backfield that would be known the following season as “The Four Horsemen," entered the game with a 6-0 record. Notre Dame had outscored its foes by an average of better than 30 points per game. Included in the six-game winning streak was a 13-0 win by the Fighting Irish over Navy at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn in the third game of the year.
Meanwhile, the Huskers came into the game with a 1-1-2 record with back-to-back ties in the previous two weeks. After tying Kansas in the game in which Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium was dedicated, Missouri and Nebraska played to a 7-7 deadlock on Oct. 27 in the Huskers’ last game before their showdown with Notre Dame.
Nebraska leaned on strong fullback Dave Noble for a pair of touchdowns. The first came in the second quarter on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Rufus Dewitz. The second came early in the fourth quarter, as Noble bulled his way to the end zone to cap a 24-yard touchdown run that gave NU a 14-0 lead with the extra point.
The Huskers nearly made it a three-score game, when Choppy Rhodes recovered an Irish fumble and returned it 73 yards to the ND 4, before he fumbled and gave Notre Dame the ball back. Late in the fourth quarter, the Irish posted a touchdown on a four-yard touchdown pass from Max Houser to Willy Maher, but Nebraska was able to finish off the 14-7 win, the second straight in as many years for the Huskers over the Irish after Notre Dame captured three in a row.
The loss would be the only one Rockne’s team would suffer during the 1923 season. The Fighting Irish defeated Butler, Carnegie Tech and St. Louis in their final three games in the season. The following year, Notre Dame was 10-0, including a win over Stanford in the first and only appearance in the Rose Bowl for Notre Dame.
Nebraska went on a 4-2-2 finish in 1923. The Cornhuskers defeated Iowa State and Kansas State and lost to Syracuse to close the year. With a 3-0-2 conference record, Nebraska won its third straight Missouri Valley Conference championship since rejoining the league for the 1921 season.
All-time, Nebraska is 15-1 on Nov. 10. Among the 15 wins is a 31-21 win over Kansas State at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln in 2001 that was the Huskers’ 11th straight win that season.