El Paso, Texas, Dec. 27, 1980--A great passing performance by senior Jeff Quinn and a stout defensive effort enabled Nebraska to enjoy a successful return to the Sun Bowl by downing Mississippi State 31-17.

The Huskers drew first blood just 2:30 into the game when, on the first play after MSU's Mardye McDole fumbled a Nebraska punt, split end Todd Brown scored on a 23-yard end-around. NU added 10 points in the second quarter on a 22-yard Kevin Seibel field goal and an 8-yard Quinn to Jeff Finn pass to take a 17-0 lead into the locker room at halftime.

MSU finally scored in the third quarter on a 47-yard field goal and appeared to be gaining momentum when Husker defensive end Jimmy Williams recovered a fumble at the Bulldog 25 to set up a 2-yard TD run by Andra Franklin. The Huskers iced the game with a 52-yard Quinn to Tim McCrady pass late in the game. For their efforts, Williams and Quinn were named the outstanding players of the 1980 Sun Bowl.

1980 Sun Bowl

Teams

1

2

3

4

Final

Nebraska

7

10

7

7

31

Mississippi St.

0

0

3

!4

17


Statistics

NU

MSU

First Downs

16

15

Rushing, Net

159

93

Passes Att., Comp., Int.

19-9-1

19-7-2

Passing, Net

159

102

Total Offense

318

195


Scoring Summary

First Quarter
NU-Todd Brown 23 run (Kevin Siebel kick), 12:30

Second Quarter
NU-FG Seibel 22, 3:23
NU-Jeff Finn 8 pass from Jeff Quinn (Seibel kick), 1:57

Third Quarter
MSU-FG Dana Moore 47, 7:12
NU-Andra Franklin 2 run (Seibel kick), 2:16

Fourth Quarter
MSU-John Bond 1 run (Bob Morgan kick), 11:44
NU-Tim McCrady 52 pass from Quinn (Seibel kick), 3:21
MSU-Mike Maddix 3 pass from Bond (Morgan kick), 1:00