Will history repeat itself in this epic Oklahoma vs. Nebraska college football game? Only time will tell, but from the looks of it, this match will be one for the ages.
These two teams already made history 50 years ago, in the so-called “Game of the Century.” Now, the Oklahoma Sooners and the Nebraska Huskers will battle it out once again, for the first time since 2010.
Already, tensions seem to be high for the No. 3 Oklahoma and its opponent. The game started mere minutes ago, at noon EST, but a pregame clip shows the two teams getting chippy with one another before taking the field. Several refs and coaches have to step between the two teams as players start pushing and shoving each other. Check it out in the tweet below:
“They’re ready to play. Both sides, you can tell they understand the meaning of this game,” one of the announcers says in the clip. His words are so true, given the history of the “Game of the Century” between Nebraska and Oklahoma.
What Happened in the Epic Nebraska vs. Oklahoma ‘Game of the Century’?
In the early 1970s, both the Huskers and Sooners put together some of the best teams the schools had ever seen. And in 1971, they met up in an incredible Thanksgiving Day showdown that resulted in No. 1 Nebraska defeating No. 2 Oklahoma.
A few days ago, ESPN detailed the entire game in a thorough, exhilarating piece that features interviews from the original players and coaches themselves. In the article, ESPN explains how the Sooners had the best offense in the league at the time, while the Huskers had the best defense. It was anybody’s game, but Nebraska pulled off a punt return that put them over the edge to defeat the projected winners, Oklahoma, 35-31.
In four straight seasons, the “Game of the Century” was the only game Oklahoma ever lost. They captured two national titles, but they couldn’t defeat the Huskers in this one showdown. Nebraska, meanwhile, went on to win their second straight national title that year against Alabama.
“If we were No. 1, I can tell you who was No. 1-and-a-half,” said 1971 Huskers running back Jeff Kinney. “It was Oklahoma.”
Bill Hancock, who worked in Oklahoma’s communications department at the time, said Oklahoma learned a huge lesson from their matchup with Nebraska. It helped them go on to win several national titles.
“I don’t think a losing team has ever gained more from a game than Oklahoma did that day,” Hancock said, “maybe ever in the history of the sport.”
In 2021, Oklahoma holds the No. 3 spot, but Nebraska didn’t break the Top 25. Now, we’ll see for ourselves how the recreated game plays out between the two teams.