Lincoln - In a game that featured plenty of crucial changes of possession on turnovers, senior linebacker Bo Ruud made the game's biggest play with his 93-yard interception return late in the third quarter that seasled the win for the Huskers. Nebraska earned the 35-17 victory over Iowa State to open conference play with a victory for the 32nd time in the past 33 years.
Playing in front of 84,703 fans at Memorial Stadium, Ruud's interception was created by a third-down pass breakup by Cortney Grixby. It was one of four turnovers by the Cyclones, who lost despite holding onto the ball for more than 39 minutes and running 102 plays, compared to just 59 plays by the Huskers.
Grixby, who made a key block on Ruud's huge return, also picked off two passes. His return of the second interception for 41 yards to the ISU 3 set up Thomas Lawson's second touchdown reception of the afternoon and iced NU's 18-point win.
Grixby also helped kickstart the Husker offense late in the first half with the longest kickoff return of his career. For the day, Grixby finished with 140 all-purpose yards, including 87 yards on two kickoff returns, a 12-yard punt return and 41 yards on his two interception returns.
The Husker offense was productive in its short time on the field. Marlon Lucky got things started with a 20-yard touchdown pass to tight end Sean Hill in the second quarter, and after Lawson's first scoring reception, Lucky added a 41-yard TD run to push the lead to 21-10. Lucky finished the day with 107 yards on the ground while quarterback Sam Keller was 18-of-28 through the air for 219 yards and two touchdowns.
Scoring (Nebraska 35, Iowa State 17)
Saturday, Sept. 29 2007
Memorial Stadium (Lincoln, Neb.)
First Quarter (Iowa State 7, Nebraska 0)
ISU - Culbertson 30 yd FG, 2:50
Second Quarter (Nebraska 14, Iowa State 10)
ISU - Scales 3 run (Culbertson kick), 7:47
NU - Hill 20 pass from Lucky (Henery kick), 4:34
NU - Lawson 6 pass from Keller (Henery kick), 1:08
Third Quarter (Nebraska 28, Iowa State 10)
NU - Lucky 41 run (Henery kick), 14:01
NU - Ruud 93 interception return (Henery kick), 2:13
Fourth Quarter (Nebraska 35, Iowa State 17)
ISU - Scales 6 run (Culbertson kick), 6:57
NU - Lawson 4 pass from Keller (Henery kick), 2:25
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