Ameer Abdullah ran for a career-high 232 yards, Tommy Armstrong Jr. passed for a career-high 271 yards and two TDs, and No. 22 Nebraska defeated Florida Atlantic 55-7 on Saturday.
The Cornhuskers rushed for 498 of their 784 total yards, the fifth-most in their program's 125-year history. They won their 29th straight opener, the longest streak in the nation.
Abdullah had 178 yards by half while becoming the eighth Nebraska player to go over 3,000 yards rushing in a career. Terrell Newby added 107 yards rushing.
Florida Atlantic, with first-year coach Charlie Partridge, was paid $1 million to visit Lincoln and will get another $1 million for playing at No. 2 Alabama next week. The Owls of Conference USA went 75 yards on their first series to tie it 7-7, but they gained just 51 more before Nebraska's defense began freely substituting after the third quarter.
Second-string, third string, doesn't matter. The Huskers continue to add to the scoreboard, now leading 55-7 after a 1-yard touchdown run by Terrell Newby on 3rd-and-Goal. Newby carried the ball seven times on the drive for 62 yards. The Huskers now have 432 yards rushing. Huskers lead 55-7.
Midway through the third quarter, walk-on Ryker Fyfe entered the game for Tommy Armstrong, but the scoring didn't stop. The 9-play, 42-yard drive looked sluggish at times, but Fyfe did have 28 yards running to go with two incomplete passes. Mauro Bondi took over kicking duties and tacked on a 45-yard field goal. Huskers up 48-7.
A quick three-and-out by the Owls set up another Cornhuskers scoring drive. The key play on this 3-play, 80-yard drive was a 63-yard completion from Tommy Armstrong to Kenny Bell. One play later, De'Mornay Pierson-El made his first grab as a Husker for an 8-yard touchdown reception. Huskers lead 45-7.
The first drive of the second half was kept alive with one of the most acrobatic catches you'll ever see. Jordan Westerkamp made the 16-yard grab behind his back on a 3rd-and-6. The rest of the drive belonged to Ameer Abdullah who had 4 rushes for 45 yards, bringing his total to 218 on the day. Terrell Newby capped the drive with a 2-yard touchdown run. Huskers lead 38-7.
With 2:30 left in the first half, the Cornhuskers have yet to punt the ball. The latest 7-play, 66-yard scoring drive was capped off by an Imani Cross three-yard touchdown run. Quarterback Tommy Armstrong seems to have found a special connection with his roommate Jordan Westerkamp. The two connected on a key third down, 33-yard completion. Abdullah continues to pat his stats, he currently has 160 yards on only 15 carries. Huskers lead 31-7.
Halfway through the second quarter, it was all about Ameer Abdullah on the Huskers fourth scoring drive of the afternoon. Abdullah ran the ball three times for 62 yards on the 4-play, 72-yard touchdown drive. It was capped off by a 47-yard break away into the right side of the end zone. Huskers lead 24-7.
The Cornhuskers went 49 yards on 9 plays to take a 17-7 lead over Florida Atlantic. Nebraska started the drive at its own 24 after the defense forced the Owls to punt for the first time. Four straight run plays by Armstrong and Abdullah took the Huskers 49 yards to the FAU 27-yard line. That's when the drive stalled. Three straight incomplete passes led to a a 44-yard field goal by freshman Drew Brown.
Nebraska used a 13-play, 86-yard drive to jump on top 7-0 early the first quarter. Key plays included a 29-yard completion to Kenny Bell on 3rd-and-7 and a 25-yard run by Imani Cross. Tommy Armstrong scored the touchdown on a quarterback keeper from five yards out.
Florida Atlantic responded immediately with an 11-play, 75-yard touchdown drive of their own. Quarterback Jaquez Johnson completed a 20-yard pass to Lucky Whitehead for the touchdown.
Keeping the scoring going, Nebraska fought off three big offensive penalties to sustain a 9-play, 75-yard scoring drive. The Cornhuskers regained the lead on a 36-yard touchdown pass from Armstrong to Jordan Westerkamp.
Nebraska leads Florida Atlantic 14-7 at the end of the first quarter.