Tom Osborne at the Little Rock Touchdown Club Part 8

Tom Osborne at the Little Rock Touchdown Club Part 8

Tom Osborne on ESPN Up Close ~1998 Pt2

Uploaded on Sep 26, 2006

Interview with Tom Osborne on his career coaching the Nebraska Cornhuskers (2/2)

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I really enjoyed the speech that Tom Osborne made on 9-9-13 at the Little Rock Touchdown Club. He noted that at the beginning of his head coaching career that he went 10-1 several years in a row but he did not beat Oklahoma the first 5 years he was there and the fans were upset. However, it was noted that the last 5 years he was there he went 60-3 and won three national championships. His last game was in January of 1998 and it was for the national championship against Tennessee and their great quarterback Peyton Manning.

1998 Orange Bowl

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1998 FedEx Orange Bowl
National Championship Game
1 2 3 4 Total
Tennessee 0 3 6 8 17
Nebraska 7 7 21 7 42
Date January 2, 1998
Season 1997
Stadium Pro Player Stadium
Location Miami Gardens, Florida
MVP Nebraska RB Ahman Green
Referee Terry McAulay (Atlantic Coast Conference)
Attendance 74,002
United States TV coverage
Network CBS
Announcers: Sean McDonough and Terry Donahue
Nielsen ratings 13.3
Orange Bowl

 < 1996 (Dec) 1999 >

The 1998 Orange Bowl a 1997-1998 Bowl Alliance game was played on January 2, 1998. This 64th edition to the Orange Bowl featured the Nebraska Cornhuskers, and the Tennessee Volunteers. Tennessee came into the game with an 11-1 record and #3 AP ranking, whereas Nebraska came into the game with a 12-0 and #2 AP ranking.

Nebraska opened up a 7-0 lead after 1 quarter, and 14-3 lead after 2. Nebraska immediately put the game away 10 minutes into the fourth quarter, through a power running game. Nebraska’s lead jumped to 28-3. Quarterback Peyton Manning fired a 5-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Peerless Price to cut the lead to 28-9. The ensuing two-point conversion failed and the lead remained at 19.

Nebraska drove 59 yards in 3 plays, before running back Ahman Green later scored on a 22-yard touchdown run to move the lead back up to 35-9. Quarterback Scott Frost later added a 9-yard touchdown run to put the game away for Nebraska. Back-up quarterback Tee Martin threw a touchdown pass in the final minutes, and the ensuing two-point conversion was successful, making the final margin 42-17.

Nebraska’s running back Ahman Green was named game MVP after rushing for an Orange Bowl record 201 yards, and two touchdowns. Peyton Manning’s final game at Tennessee capped a brilliant college career, completing 21-of-31 attempts for only 131 yards passing. The game was also the last for Nebraska head coach Tom Osborne who had been at the helm since 1973.

Aftermath

Nebraska won the National Championship, capturing the number 1 spot in the Coaches Poll and receiving the Waterford Crystal National Championship Coaches’ Trophy.

Despite an undefeated 13-0 season by Nebraska and winning the Coaches Poll National Championship, the Cornhuskers finished the season ranked number 2 in the AP Poll, behind the also undefeated Rose Bowl champion Michigan Wolverines.

Tennessee finished the 1997 season 11-2. This game would be the Vols’ last loss until September 18, 1999.

Both teams would meet exactly two years later, on January 2, 2000, in the Fiesta Bowl.

Manning humbled by UT’s retirement of No. 16

It’s hard to overshadow Steve Spurrier’s return to Neyland Stadium.

Peyton Manning did it with ease.

Manning was on hand during Saturday’s Tennessee-South Carolina game for a pre-game ceremony to retire his No. 16 jersey number, which he wore from 1994 to 1997.

“I feel one of the most significant honors a player can have in his sport is to have his number retired,” Manning said. “Certainly for me to have that at Tennessee, it’s with great pride.”

Manning is now an All-Pro quarterback for the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts.

Manning was joined during the ceremony by his parents, Archie and Olivia Manning, his wife, Ashley Manning, university president John Peterson, athletic director Mike Hamilton, UT coach Phillip Fulmer, former UT assistant coach David Cutcliffe and UT’s 2005 team captains.

“I promise you,” Manning told the crowd after a video highlight montage, “I’ll always be a Tennessee Volunteer.”

Senior quarterback Rick Clausen will wear No. 7 for the rest of the year instead of No. 16, which he wore previously.

Clausen’s brother, Casey, wore No. 7 when he played at UT 2000-03.

Manning is one of three former Vols to have his jersey number retired this season. The late Reggie White’s No. 92 was retired during a pre-game ceremony on Oct. 1 when UT beat Ole Miss 27-10.

“The Minister of Defense”, as he was nicknamed, was a UT defensive lineman 1980-83.

Doug Atkins will have his No. 91 jersey number retired on Nov. 19 when the Vols host Vanderbilt. Atkins was a UT defensive lineman 1950-52.

“To have my number retired here,” Manning said, “along with Reggie White and Doug Atkins, is the greatest athletic honor I’ve had.”

White and Atkins’ numbers will no longer be used once the players wearing the numbers have finished their UT careers.

The three are the first to have their jerseys retired strictly for on-field accomplishments. Bill Nowling (32), Rudy Klarer (49), Willis Tucker (61), and Clyde “Ig” Fuson (62) had their jerseys numbers retired after they were killed in World War II.

Manning is the most decorated student-athlete in UT history. He left Tennessee as the SEC’s all-time leading passer with 11,201 yards.

During his NFL career, Manning has earned Pro Bowl honors five times in his seven seasons and has been named MVP each of the past two years.

Manning’s 30,993 passing yards is nearing the all-time top 20. Manning threw for an NFL-record 49 touchdown passes last season.

Manning further endeared himself to UT fans when he decided to return for his senior season instead of forgoing his final year of eligibility to enter the NFL draft. Manning was projected as the top pick in the draft as a junior in 1997.

“That’s one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life,” he said.

Manning made a weekend out of the trip to Knoxville. The Colts have a bye week.

Manning attended a UT practice, spoke to the team and participated in the pre-game Vol Walk amid thousands of fans that showed up early to see the former Vol.

“Fan would like for this team to be 6-0 instead of 3-3,” Manning said before the game. “A lot of places, you wouldn’t have this kind of turnout.

“That tells you what kind of fans these people are.”

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