LINCOLN, Neb. — Troy took the money and won — again.
The Trojans of the Sun Belt Conference stunned Nebraska 24-19 on Saturday, denying Scott Frost his first win as the Cornhuskers’ coach, and earned a $1.15 million guarantee in the process.
A year ago, the Trojans pocketed just under a million dollars while beating then-No. 25 LSU on the road. And that was after giving Clemson a four-quarter game in a close loss in 2016.
“We’ve got a good football team,” Troy coach Neal Brown said. “Our guys fully expected to come in here and compete and have a chance to win in the fourth quarter, and that’s what we did.”
B.J. Smith scored untouched on a 26-yard run midway through the fourth to make it a two-score game and Will Sunderland made an interception in the final 3 minutes to lock up the second win in two years over a power-five conference opponent for Troy (2-1).
For Nebraska (0-2), the frustrating start to the Frost era continued. The Huskers (0-2) have lost their first two games for the first time since 1957 and have dropped six straight home games since beating Rutgers Sept. 23, 2017.
“I think we’re a better team than what the results say we are, but that doesn’t matter,” Frost said. “I just got done telling the team that when things get tough like this, you got two choices: you fight back and work even harder or you give up. I told them if anybody doesn’t want to stay on for this ride, let me know and get off, because I know where this is going. We just haven’t had the results early that we need.”
As he ran off the field at Memorial Stadium, a jubilant quarterback Kaleb Barker had a game ball tucked under his arm.
“They said, ‘It’s yours,” he said. “I’ll take it.”
Actually, a host of Trojans could lay claim to that ball. Cedarius Rookard ran back a punt 58 yards for a touchdown, Smith scored two touchdowns and ran for a team-high 70 yards and linebacker Tron Folsom had 14 tackles, a sack and another tackle for loss.
“We didn’t play great football as we went through the game,” Brown said. “But I thought our kids played really at a high level special teams-wise. I thought our defense bent but they didn’t break. I thought we flew to the ball and tackled better than we have at any point this season. Offensively, we just found some ways to make some key plays.”
Print Headline: Nebraska 0-2 for first time since 1957 after loss to Troy