Huskers Ground UCLA, 37-29

Nebraska  37 29 UCLA Live Stats

Score by quarters
  1 2 3 4 TOTAL
Nebraska 7 14 9 7 37
UCLA 7 14 0 8 29
Rushing Leaders
  No. Yards Avg. TD Long
Ozigbo (NU) 21 87 4.1 0 12
Perkins (UCLA) 12 68 5.7 1 32
Passing Leaders
  Comp.-Att.-Int Yards TD
Armstrong (NU) 12-19-0 174 1
Rosen (UCLA) 26-41-2 319 3
Receiving Leaders
  No. Yards TD Long
Westerkamp (NU) 2 44 0 28
Walker (UCLA) 3 88 1 60
Tackle Leaders
  Tackles TFLs Sacks
Kalu (NU) 8 0 0
K. Clark (UCLA) 11 2 0

* Tonight’s Foster Farms Bowl marks the 52nd bowl game in Nebraska history, the third most in the nation.

* Receiver Jordan Westerkamp had 44 receiving yards in the game to finish with 918 yards on the season. 

* Westerkamp’s two receptions gave him 65 on the season, good for second on the NU season list, trailing only Marlon Lucky’s 75 receptions in 2007.

* I-back Imani Cross scored on a one-yard TD run in the first quarter. The TD run was the 28th of Cross’ career and his sixth of the 2015 season.

Tommy Armstrong Jr. passed for 174 yards in the game to surpass 3,000 yards on the season. It was the third 3,000-yard passing season in Nebraska history.

* Armstrong accounted for 250 yards of total offense, passing Eric Crouch and moving into second place on the Nebraska career total offense list.

* Nebraska rushed for a season-high 326 yards, on its way to 500 yards of total offense.

* Devine Ozigbo rushed for a career-high 87 yards on a career-high 21 carries in the game.

Santa Clara, Calif. - Nebraska rolled for a season-high 326 rushing yards and 500 yards of total offense to ground UCLA's high-powered passing attack and claim a 37-29 win over the Bruins in the Foster Farms Bowl on Saturday night.

Nebraska stuck with a smash-mouth game plan all night, scoring 30 unanswered points after falling behind 21-7 in the second quarter at Levi's Stadium. Quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr. accounted for 250 yards of total offense, including 76 rushing yards on 10 carries with one touchdown. He was also efficient through the air, completing 12-of-19 passes for 174 yards and another score to earn offensive MVP honors in the game.

Armstrong was one of four Huskers to score rushing touchdowns on the night after Christmas, joining seniors Imani Cross and Andy Janovich and Los Angeles native Terrell Newby.

Devine Ozigbo didn't hit paydirt on Saturday night, but he did rush for a career-high 87 yards on a career-best 21 carries to lead three Huskers who each rushed for more than 50 yards. Cross added 55 yards on 15 totes. Overall, nine different Huskers recorded rushes in the bowl game, including 31 yards on six carries by Janovich, a nifty 22-yard run by Jamal Turner in the first half, and a game-clinching 16-yard tight end reverse by Cethan Carter for Nebraska's final first down.

The Big Red notched their sixth win of the season to finish 6-7 with wins in three of their last four games, beginning with handing Michigan State its only loss of the season. Six of Nebraska's losses were by one possession and the first five were by a total of just 13 points. UCLA ended its season 8-5.

The Huskers outgained UCLA, 500-386 in the game, holding the Bruins to just 67 yards rushing. Josh Rosen did pass for 319 yards, completing 26-of-41 attempts, but he threw a pair of interceptions as Nebraska finished plus-one in the turnover department. Nebraska ran 81 plays compared to just 57 by the Bruins, and the Huskers held possession for 38:15 on the night.

While Nebraska dominated the final statistics, UCLA jumped to a 21-7 lead midway through the second quarter, which set up the largest bowl comeback in NU's illustrious 52-game bowl history.

UCLA used a 10-play opening drive to march 79 yards in 4:43 to take a 7-0 lead, but Nebraska answered with a ground-based drive to set its tone for the night against the Bruin defense.

The Huskers' first drive resulted in a touchdown, too. NU capped its 12-play, 75-yard drive that consumed 6:27 and culminated with a one-yard touchdown run by Cross to tie the game, 7-7.

The Blackshirts got their first stop of the night on their next opportunity and the offense again pounded into UCLA territory. However, the game changed into UCLA's favor when a quarterback keeper up the middle penetrated the UCLA 15. On the carry, Armstrong had his facemask pulled but no penalty was called and the ball was poked out for a fumble. It was NU's first and only turnover of the night.

UCLA converted the turnover to points, flying 86 yards in just four plays, capped by Rosen's 60-yard touchdown pass to Kenneth Walker III to put the Bruins up 14-7.

Nebraska's next drive stalled and the Huskers were forced to punt for the only time in the first half. The Bruins cashed in another four-play drive, this time on Rosen's 26-yard touchdown pass to Nate Starks to stretch UCLA's lead to 21-7 with 7:55 left in the half.

But Nebraska stayed committed to the ground game and it paid off. The Huskers slammed their way 75 yards on just four plays on the ensuing drive, capped by Newby's three-yard run to cut UCLA's lead to 21-14 with 6:23 left in the half.

After another stop by the Blackshirts, Armstrong and the Huskers went back to work. Grinding out an eight-play, 73-yard drive that took 3:31 and culminated with a one-yard touchdown run by Janovich to tie the score at 21.

With less than a minute left, UCLA tried to make something happen on offense with a screen pass from Rosen to Paul Perkins. The play was sniffed out by Husker safety Nate Gerry, who laid a perfect fundamental tackle for a loss of two yards. But Gerry was called for targeting and ejected.

With the Blackshirts down their top player in the secondary, teammate Joshua Kalu stepped up on the next play with a highlight-reel interception to end any Bruin threat and the half. Kalu finished with a team-high eight tackles for the Huskers. Gerry added four, including a tackle for loss, in the first half alone for the Blackshirts.

Nebraska went to the locker room with momentum and took the opening kickoff of the second half and kept pounding away at the Bruin defense. The Huskers took their first lead of the game on the drive, marching 78 yards on nine plays capped by a spectacular one-handed, 22-yard touchdown catch by Stanley Morgan Jr. It was Morgan's third touchdown reception of the season.

However, the point after attempt by Drew Brown was no good to keep the NU lead at 27-21. The Blackshirts forced a three-and-out on the Bruins' ensuing drive. The Huskers rolled into the red zone again. On 3rd-and-1 inside the UCLA 5, a roll-out pass was incomplete and the Huskers settled for a 20-yard Brown field goal to extend their lead to 30-21.

The Blackshirts again silenced the Bruins on their only other drive of the third quarter with another three-and-out, and after a scrappy punt return by Jordan Westerkamp put the Big Red near midfield, Armstrong and the Huskers ended the third quarter with second down near the Bruin 5.

In the third quarter alone, Nebraska rolled to 151 rushing yards, while holding UCLA to minus-five rushing yards in the quarter.

Nebraska started the fourth quarter strong, with Armstrong sprinting to his right for a three-yard touchdown to put Nebraska up 37-21 with 14:11 left. It capped a nine-play, 51-yard drive that took 4:01.

Rosen and the Bruins finally found an answer on their opening drive of the fourth quarter, covering 76 yards in eight plays capped by Rosen's nine-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Payton with 11:29 left. Rosen then hit Thomas Duarte with a two-point conversion pass to cut Nebraska's lead to 37-29.

The Blackshirts did the rest, sacking Rosen to end a threat on the next Bruin drive before Lou Groza Award winner Ka'imi Fairbairn misfired on a 46-yard field goal with 5:29 left.

Nebraska was unable to mount a threat on its next offensive possession but Chris Jones' interception of a desperation pass by Rosen under heavy pressure from Maliek Collins, Greg McMullen and Michael Rose-Ivey shut down the Bruin offense for the last time.

Armstrong unleashed 23-yard run on NU's final possession to force the Bruins to use their remaining timeouts. Three plays later, on 3rd-and-2 at the UCLA 46, Cethan Carter took a tight end reverse 16 yards for the game's final first down and end Nebraska's season on a winning note.


Nebraska vs. UCLA
Saturday, Dec. 26, 2015
Levi's Stadium (Santa Clara, Calif.)

First Quarter (7-7)
UCLA, 10:17 - Perkins 1 run (Fairbairn PAT). 10 plays, 79 yards, 4:43. UCLA 7-0.

NEB, 3:50 - Cross 1 run (Brown PAT). 12 plays, 75 yards, 6:27. 7-7.

Second Quarter (21-21)
UCLA, 11:04 - Walker 60 pass from Rosen (Fairbairn PAT). 4 plays, 86 yards, 1:38. UCLA 14-7

UCLA, 7:55 - Starks 26 pass from Rosen (Fairbairn PAT). 4 plays, 68 yards, 1:36. UCLA 21-7

NEB, 6:23 - Newby 3 run (Brown PAT). 4 plays, 75 yards, 1:32. UCLA 21-14

NEB, 0:52 - Janovich 1 run (Brown PAT). 8 plays, 73 yards, 3:31. 21-21.

Third Quarter (NU 30-21)
NEB, 10:37 - Morgan 22 pass from Armstrong (PAT missed). 9 plays, 78 yards, 4:23. NEB 27-21.

NEB, 4:50 - Brown 20 field goal. 11 plays, 67 yards, 4:32. NEB 30-21.

Fourth Quarter (NU 37-29)
NEB, 14:11 - Armstrong 3 run (Brown PAT). 9 plays, 51 yards, 4:01. NEB 37-21.

UCLA, 11:29 - Payton 9 pass from Rosen (2-pt good, Duarte from Rosen). 8 plays, 76 yards, 2:35. NEB 37-29

Attendance: 33,527
Time of Game: 3:18
Game Start: 8:15 p.m. (CT)