NCAA Football

                === No. 17 Nebraska rolls past Southern Miss ===
 Lincoln,  NE  (Sports Network) - Nebraska  lost its workhorse running back Rex
 Burkhead  in the second quarter, but junior quarterback Taylor Martinez picked
 up the slack.
 Martinez  threw  for a career-high  354 yards  and five touchdowns on 26-of-34
 efficiency  as No.  17 Nebraska  pulled away  from Southern  Miss, 49-20,  and
 extended its nation's longest active winning streak in season openers to 27.
 "I thought he played very well, very efficient," Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini
 said  of Martinez's performance. "(He) made good decisions, and he distributed
 the ball well. I thought there were a lot of positives there."
 Burkhead,  who ran  for 1,357 yards and 15 touchdowns last season, carried the
 ball  three times  for 68  yards,  including a  57-yard touchdown  run in  the
 opening frame, before exiting with a left knee injury.
 "He'll  be  fine. He's  day-to-day, week-to-week. I  don't think it's anything
 long term," Pelini said of the injury.
 Burkhead's  backup, Ameer  Abdullah, racked up 81 yards rushing on 15 carries,
 while  Braylon Heard  added  34 yards  on  the  ground with  a  score for  the
 Cornhuskers  (1-0), who went  9-4 a year ago and finished third in the Legends
 division of the Big Ten.
 Kyler  Reed, Jake  Long, Steven Osborne, Kenny Bell and Abdullah each caught a
 TD pass.
 Chris  Campbell was  6-of-12 for 69 yards  and a score in Ellis Johnson's head
 coaching debut for the Golden Eagles (0-1), who won a school-record 12 games a
 year ago.
 Johnson, who spent the last four seasons as the defensive coordinator at South
 Carolina, took over for Larry Fedora, now the head coach at North Carolina.
 "We've  just  got to  get better. We  are not that  tough on defense," Johnson
 Burkhead  got up slowly and gingerly before limping to the sidelines following
 a nine-yard run with a little more than six minutes left in the second.
 Nebraska led, 14-7, at that point, but the Golden Eagles concluded an 11-play,
 73-yard  march  on their  ensuing  possession  when Campbell  found  Dominique
 Sullivan  for a  24-yard TD  strike,  which knotted  the contest  late in  the
 But  the Cornhuskers,  guided by an accurate and efficient Martinez, outscored
 Southern Miss 35-6 the rest of the way.
 Martinez  hit Long  for a  nine-yard score  on Nebraska's  next series  before
 Corey Acosta nailed a 45-yard field goal a bit later in the quarter to make it
 a 21-17 game.
 Martinez  then went 4-of-5 for 77 yards on Nebraska's final drive of the half,
 a brisk five-play, 77-yard trek, which took just 34 seconds to complete.
 Jamal  Turner had a 36-yard catch before Osborne hauled in a 29-yard score and
 gave the Huskers a 28-17 halftime advantage.
 Reed  corralled an  18-yard score and Heard  scampered in from 10 yards out in
 the third stanza, which extended the margin to 42-17.
 Acosta  split  the uprights  from 37  yards out in  the fourth before Abdullah
 caught an 11-yard touchdown pass to conclude the scoring.
 Earlier,  Nebraska  scored touchdowns on its  first two possessions and took a
 14-0  lead. Burkhead had a 57-yard TD scamper on Nebraska's opening series and
 Bell snagged a 26-yard reception for a score on its next trek.
 Tracy Lampley returned Nebraska's ensuing kickoff 100 yards for a score to get
 Southern Miss on the board with 6:54 left in the first.
                                   Game Notes
 Nebraska,  which  has won every  season opener since  1986, has won every game
 during  the  stretch by double  digits ...  Nebraska leads the all-time series
 between the teams, 3-1 ... The Huskers racked up 632 yards of total offense.
 09/01 20:22:38 ET

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