Published on 09-21-2015 11:36 PM
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In 1984, Nebraska plays for the win and loses in heartbreaking fashion. Thirty-one years later, Nebraska plays for the tie, goes to overtime, and then loses in heartbreaking fashion. Some things just never change.
If you're like me, you went through a full spectrum of emotions during the four-plus hours of the game. Excitement. Shock. Frustration. Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance. Gallows humor. Excitement. Shock again. Confidence. Jubilation. Nervousness. Anguish. Devastation. And that was just the first quarter.
This loss stuck with me much longer - and much harder - than the BYU defeat. On the surface, that seems counter-intuitive. For three-fourths of the game, Nebraska played BYU well enough to win. They led for a large portion of that game, all the way up to the final second when a 1-in-100 play beat them. They "deserved" to win that game.
Miami, on the other hand, rarely felt competitive. For over 56 minutes, Miami led by anywhere from seven to 24 points - and it often felt like much more. And that is the difference. From the 8:04 mark of the first quarter, when Miami went up 14-0, through the 11:14 mark of the fourth, when they increased their lead to 33-10, Miami had complete control of the game. The odds of a NU rally were about as likely as a snowstorm (or a sellout crowd) hitting Sun Life Stadium. You had given up. I had conceded defeat. The only drama was how bad the final margin would be.