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South Dakota State at Nebraska

Rough week for Pelini ends in win over South Dakota St.

CBSSports.com wire reports
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LINCOLN, Neb. -- Tommy Armstrong Jr. and Ron Kellogg III combined to pass for 305 yards, Ameer Abdullah ran for a career-high 139 yards and Nebraska shook off South Dakota State in the second quarter in a 59-20 victory Saturday.

Armstrong got the start in place of the injured Taylor Martinez, but playing time was evenly split between the redshirt freshman and Kellogg.

Nebraska (3-1), which finished with 645 yards, scored 38 straight points after falling behind 17-14 in the first quarter against the Championship Subdivision Jackrabbits (3-1).

Martinez didn't practice this week because of a turf-toe injury on his left foot and was in shorts and a T-shirt on the sideline. He had started 32 straight games since 2010.

The victory will do little to quell concern over Nebraska's defense. SDSU's Zach Zenner ran for 202 yards, tied for 10th-most by a Nebraska opponent, and the Jackrabbits finished with 465 total yards and 25 first downs.

Armstrong and Kellogg each played five series and threw one touchdown apiece. Armstrong led four touchdown drives and was 12 of 15 for 169 yards. Kellogg helped produce three TDs and a field goal and was 8 for 9 for 136 yards.

Abdullah, who scored the go-ahead touchdown on a 1-yard run early in the second quarter, didn't play after the Huskers' first series of the third quarter.

The victory ended a rough week for coach Bo Pelini and the Huskers. Nebraska blew an 18-point lead while losing 41-21 at home to UCLA last week, and Pelini got into a tiff with Husker quarterback great Tommie Frazier, who tweeted after the UCLA game that the defensive staff should be fired.

None of that compared to the firestorm created by the release of a 2-year-old audio of Pelini's profane rant against fans. The 2011 audio, leaked to the Deadspin.com sports website Monday, captured his off-air conversation with radio play-by-play announcer following a win over Ohio State.

Pelini apologized in a statement Monday and in a letter to fans posted on the school's athletic website Friday.

Fans greeted Pelini and the Huskers with their usual cheers and applause during the traditional Tunnel Walk, and he raised his right hand in acknowledgment as he walked off the field at the end of the game.

Those same fans were silenced in the first quarter as the Jackrabbits, ranked No. 6 in the FCS, moved up and down the field.

Zenner went untouched up the middle for a 40-yard touchdown and added a 3-yard TD before Justin Syrovatka kicked a 48-yard field goal to put SDSU up 17-14.

Zenner, a 2,000-yard rusher a year ago and a leading candidate for the Walter Payton Award as the top player in the FCS, went over 100 yards on just his seventh carry.

The Huskers created some cushion in the second quarter. Armstrong passed 16 yards to Sam Burtch for a 28-17 lead, and after Stanley Jean-Baptist's fourth interception in four games, Kellogg hit Tyler Wullenwaber to make it 35-17.

Mauro Bondi made it a 21-point game with a 22-yard field goal to end the half.

South Dakota State, which hosts two-time defending FCS champion North Dakota State at home next week, dropped to 0-6 against FBS opponents since elevating its program from Division II in 2004.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Scoring Summary
NEBImani Cross 5 yd run (Pat Smith kick)
SDSTZach Zenner 40 yd run (Justin Syrovatka kick)
NEBImani Cross 2 yd run (Mauro Bondi kick)
SDSTZach Zenner 3 yd run (Justin Syrovatka kick)
SDSTJustin Syrovatka 48 yd FG
NEBAmeer Abdullah 1 yd run (Pat Smith kick)
NEBSam Burtch 16 yd pass from Tommy Armstrong (Mauro Bondi kick)
NEBTyler Wullenwaber 23 yd pass from Ron Kellogg (Pat Smith kick)
NEBMauro Bondi 22 yd FG
NEBTerrell Newby 10 yd run (Pat Smith kick)
NEBRandy Gregory 33 yd interception return (Mauro Bondi kick)
SDSTJustin Syrovatka 29 yd FG
NEBTerrell Newby 5 yd run (Pat Smith kick)
 
Team Stats
 SDSTNEB
First Downs2534
Third Down Efficiency3-117-10
Fourth Down Efficiency0-11-1
Plays-Net Yards67-46577-645
Rushes-Yds38-22751-335
Passing Yds238310
Kick Return Yds4168
Punt Return Yds19
Passes19-29-221-26-0
Punts3-1201-47
Fumbles-Lost1-13-2
Penalties-Yds4-454-33
Time of Poss.30:4929:11
 
Individual Stats
RUSHING
SDST: Zach Zenner 21-202, Reginald Gandy 8-38, Isaac Rodriguez 2-32, Austin Sumner 7--45
NEB: Ameer Abdullah 15-139, Imani Cross 10-60, Terrell Newby 8-52, Tommy Armstrong 5-38, King Frazier 5-14, Graham Nabity 3-14, Ron Kellogg 2-7, Jordan Westerkamp 1-7, Ryker Fyfe 1-3, Kenny Bell 1-1
PASSING
SDST: Austin Sumner 19-29-238-2
NEB: Tommy Armstrong 12-15-169-0, Ron Kellogg 8-9-136-0, Ryker Fyfe 1-1-5-0, Team 0-1-0-0
RECEIVING
SDST: Cam Jones 6-68, Jason Schneider 5-48, Reginald Gandy 3-29, Brandon Hubert 2-36, Trevor Tiefenthaler 1-25, Zach Zenner 1-21, Trevor Wesley 1-11
NEB: Quincy Enunwa 6-78, Ameer Abdullah 3-46, Tyler Wullenwaber 2-47, Cethan Carter 2-43, Kenny Bell 2-20, Alonzo Moore 1-19, Jake Long 1-17, Sam Burtch 1-16, Jordan Westerkamp 1-11, Jamal Turner 1-8, Brandon Reilly 1-5