1985 Nebraska Cornhuskers football
Logo of the Nebraska athletic teams 1982-1991
Fiesta Bowl vs. #5 Michigan, L 23-27
ConferenceBig Eight Conference
CoachesNo. 10
APNo. 11
1985 record9-3-0 (6-1-0 Big 8)
Head coachTom Osborne (13th season)
Offensive coordinatorTom Osborne (16th season)
Offensive schemeI formation
Defensive coordinatorCharlie McBride (5th season)
Home stadiumMemorial Stadium
← 1984
1986 →
1985 Big 8 football standings
v · d · e Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
#1 Oklahoma 7 0 0     11 1 0
#11 Nebraska 6 1 0     9 3 0
Oklahoma State 4 3 0     8 4 0
Colorado 4 3 0     7 5 0
Iowa State 3 4 0     5 6 0
Kansas 2 5 0     6 6 0
Kansas State 1 6 0     1 10 0
Missouri 1 6 0     1 10 0
† – Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll

The 1985 Nebraska Cornhuskers football team represented the University of Nebraska–Lincoln in the 1985 NCAA Division I-A football season. The team was coached by Tom Osborne and played their home games in Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Nebraska.



Date Time Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
September 7* #17 Florida State #10 Memorial StadiumLincoln, Nebraska ABC L 13-17   75,943
September 21* Illinois #18 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska W 52-25   76,149
September 28* Oregon #16 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska W 63-0   75,947
October 5* New Mexico #13 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska W 38-7   75,902
October 12 at #5 Oklahoma State #9 Lewis FieldStillwater, Oklahoma ESPN W 34-24   50,400
October 19 at Missouri #7 Faurot FieldColumbia, Missouri W 28-20   62,733
October 26† Colorado #5 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska ABC W 17-7   76,014
November 2 at Kansas State #5 KSU StadiumManhattan, Kansas W 41-3   41,200
November 9 Iowa State #3 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska W 49-0   75,920
November 16 Kansas #2 Memorial Stadium • Lincoln, Nebraska W 56-6   75,863
November 23 at #5 Oklahoma #2 Oklahoma Memorial StadiumNorman, Oklahoma ABC L 7-27   75,554
January 1* vs. #5 Michigan #7 Sun Devil StadiumTempe, Arizona (Fiesta Bowl) L 23-27   72,454
*Non-Conference Game. Homecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll released prior to game. All times are in Central Time.

Roster and coaching staffEdit

1985 Nebraska Cornhuskers football team roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Name Class
OG Bailey, DanDan Bailey So
TE 87 Banderas, TomTom Banderas So
WB Behrens, VanceVance Behrens So
QB 12 Blakeman, CleteClete Blakeman So
OG 70 Blankenship, BrianBrian Blankenship Sr
WB 33 Brinson, DanaDana Brinson Fr
OG 58 Bryan, DaveDave Bryan Jr
OT 73 Carpenter, ToddTodd Carpenter Jr
FB 24 Casterline, DanDan Casterline Jr
QB 7 Clayton, McCathornMcCathorn Clayton So
C 54 Cooper, MarkMark Cooper Jr
TE Diaz, MarkMark Diaz Jr
OT 59 Dittmer, JimJim Dittmer Sr
IB 22 DuBose, DougDoug DuBose Jr
OT 77 Ernest, JimJim Ernest RFr
TE 80 Frain, ToddTodd Frain Sr
OG 67 Galois, RonRon Galois Jr
SE 86 Gamble, JasonJason Gamble So
WB Gatson, PernellPernell Gatson Jr
OT Green, DerrickDerrick Green So
TE Hall, MikeMike Hall So
QB 86 Hawkins, HendleyHendley Hawkins So
FB 36 Hedlund, MikeMike Hedlund So
FB 48 Heibel, MicahMicah Heibel So
OG 75 Hoefler, MikeMike Hoefler Jr
WB Holscher, JimJim Holscher So
OT 64 Johnson, BradBrad Johnson Jr
IB 6 Jones, KeithKeith Jones So
FB 49 Kaelin, KenKen Kaelin Jr
IB 40 Kelley, JonJon Kelley So
SE Krantz, JeffJeff Krantz
C 68 Lewis, BillBill Lewis Sr
OT 57 Lightner, KevenKeven Lightner So
WB 23 Lindstrom, RogerRoger Lindstrom Sr
OT 77 Macias, BillBill Macias So
OT 72 Maggard, RobRob Maggard Jr
OG 61 McCormick, JohnJohn McCormick So
IB 21 Miles, PaulPaul Miles Sr
TE 43 Millikan, ToddTodd Millikan Fr
QB 16 Mlinar, JerryJerry Mlinar Jr
TE 90 Moore, BrianBrian Moore Sr
WB 8 Nelson, RayRay Nelson Jr
C 63 Nichols, JohnJohn Nichols So
C 56 Noel, JackJack Noel Sr
SE Otte, MikeMike Otte
OG 74 Parker, StanStan Parker Jr
FB 26 Rathman, TomTom Rathman Sr
OT 65 Roth, TimTim Roth Sr
OT 78 Rother, TimTim Rother So
OG 62 Schaaf, JimJim Schaaf So
SE 85 Schnitzler, RobbRobb Schnitzler Jr
C 53 Sellentin, JeffJeff Sellentin Jr
WB 2 Sheppard, VonVon Sheppard So
SE 88 Smith, RodRod Smith So
QB 10 Taylor, JeffJeff Taylor So
QB 11 Taylor, SteveSteve Taylor Fr
QB 14 Turner, TravisTravis Turner Sr
OT 69 Welter, TomTom Welter Jr
Pos. # Name Class
CB 42 Carl, MikeMike Carl Jr
S 45 Carr, ChrisChris Carr Jr
CB 28 Custard, JohnJohn Custard So
LB 46 Daffer, ChadChad Daffer Sr
CB 32 Davis, BrianBrian Davis Jr
LB 48 Etienne, LeRoyLeRoy Etienne Fr
LB 38 Forch, SteveSteve Forch Jr
DE Gangwish, PaulPaul Gangwish Sr
DT 52 Groskurth, DannyDanny Groskurth So
LB 39 Henning, BlakeBlake Henning So
S 15 Hill, ScottScott Hill So
LB 91 Holloway, TonyTony Holloway Jr
DE 55 Jamrog, JeffJeff Jamrog So
DT 98 Jones, LeeLee Jones So
LB 44 Knox, MikeMike Knox Sr
CB 17 Miller, CleoCleo Miller Jr
LB 41 Munford, MarcMarc Munford Jr
MG 95 Noonan, DannyDanny Noonan Jr
DE Opie, HarlanHarlan Opie So
CB 9 Paige, WoodyWoody Paige Sr
DT 97 Palmer, TonyTony Palmer So
LB 35 Parsons, KevinKevin Parsons Jr
CB 18 Pokorny, BrianBrian Pokorny Sr
MG 34 Proffitt, ToddTodd Proffitt Sr
DE 84 Reeves, GreggGregg Reeves Sr
DT 93 Reynolds, RodRod Reynolds Sr
MG 66 Rogers, PhilPhil Rogers Sr
CB 3 Schneider, GaryGary Schneider Jr
LB 51 Shaw, PatPat Shaw Jr
LB 99 Shead, KenKen Shead Sr
S 19 Siebler, BryanBryan Siebler Jr
DT 96 Skow, JimJim Skow Sr
DE 81 Smith, BradBrad Smith Sr
DT 92 Smith, NeilNeil Smith So
DT 76 Spachman, ChrisChris Spachman Jr
S Strasburger, MattMatt Strasburger Jr
S 29 Thayer, DanDan Thayer Jr
DE 82 Thomas, BroderickBroderick Thomas Fr
DE 89 Tucker, ScottScott Tucker Sr
DE 83 Tyrer, BradBrad Tyrer Jr
CB 27 Watkins, DennisDennis Watkins Sr
LB 37 Welniak, DougDoug Welniak So
Special teams
Pos. # Name Class
MON 31 Chealey, GeneGene Chealey So
PK 1 Klein, DaleDale Klein Jr
MON 4 Rozier, GuyGuy Rozier Sr
P/PK 13 Schnitzler, CraigCraig Schnitzler So
MON 11 Tomjack, JeffJeff Tomjack So
MON 43 Washington, BrianBrian Washington So
P/PK 47 Wingard, DanDan Wingard Sr
Head coach
Coordinators/assistant coaches
  • Charlie McBride
       5th season as DC/LB coach
       9th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Colorado
  • Cletus Fischer
       OL coach
       26th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Nebraska
  • John Melton
       13th season as TE/WB coach
       24th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Wyoming
  • Boyd Epley
       17th season as S&C coach
       17th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Nebraska
  • George Darlington
       DB coach
       13th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Rutgers
  • Milt Tenopir
       12th season as OL coach
       12th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Sterling
  • Gene Huey
       9th season as WR coach
       9th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Wyoming
  • Frank Solich
       3rd season as RB coach
       7th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Nebraska
  • Jack Pierce
       7th year at Nebraska
  • Bob Thornton
       5th season as Sec coach
       5th year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Nebraska
  • Dan Young
       3rd season as OL/K coach
       3rd year at Nebraska
       Alma mater: Reed

  • (C) Team captain
  • (S) Suspended
  • (I) Ineligible
  • Cruz Roja.svg Injured
  • Redshirt.svg Redshirt

Last update: 2011-01-17

Game notesEdit

Florida StateEdit

#17 Florida State at #10 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#17 Florida State 7 10 0 0 17
#10 Nebraska 7 6 0 0 13

Both teams started out evenly with a 7-7 tie after the first quarter, but Florida State led the Cornhuskers by 4 at the half and no one scored during the rest of this scorcher, as the mercury in Lincoln reached 93°F (and 133°F on the field).


Illinois at #18 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
Illinois 0 10 0 15 25
#18 Nebraska 14 10 21 7 52

Although Illinois started out behind 0-17, they came within 7 points of a tie before Nebraska ran away, as the Cornhuskers at one point scored 28 straight in a game whose outcome never was seriously in doubt.


Oregon at #16 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
Oregon 0 0 0 0 0
#16 Nebraska 14 28 14 7 63

Oregon was rendered helpess in Lincoln as Nebraska punched in four touchdowns late in the 2nd quarter and rolled to a 63-0 shutout in Lincoln. The Ducks only crossed the center of the field twice and were unable to scrape up even 1/3 of the total time of possession.

New MexicoEdit

New Mexico at #13 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
New Mexico 7 0 0 0 7
#13 Nebraska 7 7 10 14 38

Nebraska closed out the non-conference season against a New Mexico team that was not intimidated in Lincoln. The Lobos scored first and acquired 379 total yards of offense while winning the time of possession battle, but could not turn those accomplishments into scores as they also allowed nine sacks, four interceptions and lost a fumble.

Oklahoma StateEdit

#9 Nebraska at #5 Oklahoma State [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#9 Nebraska 0 17 3 14 34
#5 Oklahoma State 0 3 14 7 24

Nebraska pulled off the upset of Oklahoma State in Stillwater, as The Cowboys' passing attack was no match for the Cornhuskers' rushing attack when it was hampered by OSU's two lost fumbles and two thrown interceptions. Nebraska continued their unbeaten streak over Oklahoma State that began in 1961.


#7 Nebraska at Missouri [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#7 Nebraska 6 9 3 10 28
Missouri 7 0 6 7 20

21 of Nebraska's 28 points came off of the foot of PK Dale Klein, who not only tied the NCAA record of seven field goals in a game, but also became the first player to make seven straight in a game while also running his Nebraska field goal record streak up to nine.


Colorado at #5 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
Colorado 7 0 0 0 7
#5 Nebraska 0 7 7 3 17

Colorado, playing without its 1st and 2nd string quarterbacks, still managed to hold Nebraska to a 7-7 halftime tie before a long touchdown run at the end of the 3rd quarter allowed the Cornhuskers to pull away.

Kansas StateEdit

#5 Nebraska at Kansas State [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#5 Nebraska 7 17 3 14 41
Kansas State 3 0 0 0 3

Kansas State managed to prevent any single Nebraska runner from exceeding 100 yards, and even though Nebraska only completed six passes, it made no difference as the Wildcats were held to just a 1st quarter field goal while the Cornhuskers had little trouble putting up 41 points. Nebraska PK Dale Klein set a Nebraska and personal record when he kicked a 50-yard field goal, his 12th of the season.

Iowa StateEdit

Iowa State at #3 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
Iowa State 0 0 0 0 0
#3 Nebraska 7 14 21 7 49

The #3 Cornhuskers romped in Lincoln as the Blackshirts extended their touchdown prevention streak to 11 quarters. Nebraska IB Doug DuBose entered record territory, becoming the 10th Nebraska player to post 2,000 yards, became the third (after Jarvis Redwine and Mike Rozier) to have two 1,000 yard seasons, and was the first Cornhusker to do so before their senior season.


Kansas at #2 Nebraska [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
Kansas 3 0 3 0 6
#2 Nebraska 10 28 11 7 56

Despite a 0-6 turnover margin deficit, #2 Nebraska rolled the Kansas Jayhawks up in a 56-6 drubbing that saw the Cornhusker defense extend their touchdown-free series to 15 quarters. Without the five lost fumbles and one interception given up by Nebraska, the blowout of Kansas would have been far worse.


#2 Nebraska at #5 Oklahoma [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#2 Nebraska 0 0 0 7 7
#5 Oklahoma 14 3 10 0 27

Oklahoma completely shut down Nebraska's offensive machine, as the Cornhuskers' only score came on a 76 yard fumble return for a touchdown with just 26 seconds left to play, very narrowly avoiding what would have been Nebraska's first shutout in 147 games. There were only 19 total passes and 5 completions in the entire game, and although Nebraska had not previously allowed more than 157 ground yards this season, the vaunted Oklahoma wishbone attack netted the Sooners 423 yards.


#7 Nebraska vs #5 Michigan [box score]
by Quarter1234 Total
#7 Nebraska 0 14 0 9 23
• #5 Michigan 3 0 24 0 27

Although Nebraska led 14-3 going into halftime, turnover-free Michigan cashed in on each of several Cornhusker mistakes in the third quarter to run off 24 points and pull away, handing Nebraska its second consecutive defeat to a #5 team.


Ranking Movement
Poll Pre Wk 1 Wk 2 Wk 3 Wk 4 Wk 5 Wk 6 Wk 7 Wk 8 Wk 9 Wk 10 Wk 11 Wk 12 Wk 13 Wk 14 Wk 15 Final
AP 9 10 18 18 16 13 9 7 5 5 3 2 2 8 7 7 11
Coaches 10

After the seasonEdit



Award Name(s)
All-America 1st team Bill Lewis, Jim Skow
All-America 2nd team Doug DuBose
All-America 3rd team Tom Rathman
All-America honorable mention Tim Roth, Brian Blankenship
All-Big 8 1st team Brian Blankenship, Bill Lewis, Doug DuBose, Tom Rathman, Dale Klein, Jim Skow
All-Big 8 2nd team Danny Noonan, Brian Washington, Tim Roth, Dan Wingard, Chris Spachman, Marc Munford

NFL and Pro PlayersEdit

The following Nebraska players who participated in the 1985 season later moved on to the next level and joined a professional or semi-pro team as draftees or free agents.[4]

Name Team
Brian Blankenship Pittsburgh Steelers
Dana Brinson San Diego Chargers
Brian Davis Washington Redskins
Doug DuBose San Francisco 49ers
LeRoy Etienne San Francisco 49ers
Todd Frain Washington Redskins
Keith Jones Cleveland Browns
Mike Knox Denver Broncos
Bill Lewis Los Angeles Raiders
Paul Miles Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Marc Munford Denver Broncos
Danny Noonan Dallas Cowboys
Tom Rathman San Francisco 49ers
Tim Rother Los Angeles Raiders
Jim Skow Cincinnati Bengals
Neil Smith Kansas City Chiefs
Steve Taylor Edmonton Eskimos
Broderick Thomas Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Brian Washington Cleveland Browns
Dennis Watkins Philadelphia Eagles
Tom Welter St. Louis Cardinals


  1. "Football - 1985 Schedule/Results". University of Nebraska-Lincoln Athletics Department. Retrieved 2009-05-31.
  2. Eugene Register-Guard. 1985 Sept 29.
  3. 1985 Husker Honors
  4. "All Time NFL Huskers". Archived from the original on 2009-06-02. Retrieved 2009-05-31.
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