Sunday, December 12, 2010

Roy Helu Jr. Strikes First with the Opening TD in Loss to No. 9 Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship

(Roy Helu Jr.)
Nebraska fans had to feel a little uneasy when they saw running back Roy Helu Jr. limp off the field on the Huskers first possession. He wasn't down long, but it gave cause for concern.

Or not.

After stopping Oklahoma on a fourth down try, Helu took the first play of the Huskers' next drive 66 yards for a touchdown to put them ahead 7-0 midway through the first quarter.

It was reminiscent of the opening play against Missouri earlier this year, when Helu finished with 307 yards rushing and had three long touchdown runs. He won't hit 300 yards today, but that run was as important as any this year, establishing the early momentum in favor of the Huskers.

Helu is as important as any third of the Huskers' running attack, but he might have had the fewest headlines heading into today's game. Quarterback Taylor Martinez's injury has been of particular concern, and Rex Burkhead's performance last week with 101 yards, a rushing touchdown and two passing touchdowns earned plenty of attention.

Although Nebraska suffered in a tough loss, they look to capture the Pacific Life Holiday Bowl against Washington on December 30th.

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