Nebraska started with the ball in overtime, but quarterback Adrian Martinez was intercepted. Michigan State drove near the Husker goal line before a a 21-yard field goal won it for Michigan State.
Fourth Quarter, 3:47 left
You had to think the big special teams blunder was going to happen at some point. Nebraska punter Daniel Cernibooted a punt to the wrong returner and Michigan State housed a punt return 62 yards for a touchdown to tie the game with less than four minutes remaining. The Husker defense has played well enough to win in the second half, but once again, the Husker special teams chalked one up in the negative column.
Fourth Quarter, 7:29 left
The Huskers took a 20-13 lead with an 11-play, 80-yard drive drive that was capped by a 3-yard touchdown run by Adrian Martinez. The Huskers picked up a key fourth-and-three situation on a scramble by Martinez to keep the chains moving. The Huskers' significant time of possession advantage in the second half showed itself on that scoring drive.
Third Quarter, 9:10 left
Nebraska opened the second half with the ball and drove 60 yards on 14 plays before Connor Culp banged home his second field goal of the game -- another from 28 yards -- to tie the game at 13. On the drive, Martinez hooked up with tight end Travis Vokolek on an 18-yard play to keep the drive moving.
Second Quarter, 1:03 left
Michigan State once again entered Nebraska's red zone, but once again left with a field goal. Michigan State got down to Nebraska's 4-yard line before a false start pushed the Spartans back. Nebraska dialed up pressure on third down to force a 27-yard field goal that Michigan State made to regain the lead.
Second Quarter, 4:20 left
Adrian Martinez has been playing lights out all season, and showed it off on Nebraska's scoring drive that tied the game at 10. Martinez rumbled in on a broken play from 12 yards out to cap a nine-play, 75-yard drive. The big play came on fourth down when Martinez pitched to Rahmir Johnson for an 18-yard gain.
Second Quarter, 8:20 left
Nebraska's momentum from the previous scoring drive was short-lived. On the ensuing kickoff, Michigan State put together a long return and began its offensive possession at its own 43-yard line. A 35-yard completion and an 11-yard run quickly had the Spartans in Nebraska's red zone. The Blackshirts were able to bow up, however, and forced a field goal attempt from 26 yards, which was good. The scoring drive took just six plays and covered 49 yards.
Second Quarter, 11:22 left
Nebraska was able to get on the scoreboard early in the second quarter thanks to an exceptional 45-yard scramble by Adrian Martinez. Martinez avoided going down, then ran deep into Michigan State territory (and got nine more yards for a late hit) to get into Michigan State's red zone. Nebraska's drive stalled out -- yes, there was another false start on the offensive line -- before Connor Culp hit a 28-yard field goal to cut Michigan State's lead to 7-3 early in the second quarter.
Second Quarter, 14:08 left
Michigan State broke through first with a play that should have looked familiar to Husker defenders. Payton Thorne found Jayden Reed for a 35-yard touchdown on a flea flicker. It was eerily similar to the play Colorado used under Mel Tucker to defeat Nebraska in 2019 when Tucker was at Colorado.
Second Quarter, 15:00 left
Adrian Martinez returned to the field for Nebraska's third offensive possession, but the Big Red went three-and-out with Michigan State getting home with pressure once again. The teams played the first quarter like a typical Big Ten game, with the Huskers gaining 44 yards and Michigan State gaining 34 in the first quarter.
First Quarter, 3:33 left:
Backup quarterback Logan Smothers led his first offensive drive, taking the Huskers into Michigan State territory before the self-inflicted issues began. Nebraska had back to back false starts called on the offensive line, and Nebraska ended up being forced to punt. Husker head coach Scott Frost lit into the offensive line when it came to the sidelines.
First Quarter, 7:08 left:
Nebraska overcame a 15-yard penalty on Deontre Thomas, getting a key fourth down stop on their own territory by JoJo Domann. Through the early portion of the first quarter, the Husker linebackers are tackling well against Michigan State's rushing attack.
First Quarter, 12:19 left:
Nebraska’s players and coaches were left holding their breath early in the first quarter of Saturday’s game with Michigan State when senior quarterback Adrian Martinez was injured on the Huskers’ opening offensive possession.
On third down of the Huskers' first possession, Martinez scrambled up field where he was met by a pair of Michigan State defenders — one appearing to catch Martinez under the chin with his helmet — following a 5-yard gain.
Martinez was down for a minute before finally being able to walk off the field under his own power. After getting to the Nebraska bench, Nebraska trainers appeared to be looking at Martinez’s jaw and lower teeth. Martinez then headed to the Nebraska locker room during Michigan State's ensuing offensive possession.
Injury updates: It appears Nebraska will be without wide receiver Oliver Martin at least one more week, as he was not spotted in warmups.
Of good news, defensive lineman Casey Rogers was moving around well in warmups and appears he might be able to make his first go of it this season. He was said by his position coach Tony Tuitoi this week to be about 90 to 95 percent. Offensive lineman Broc Bando is also back in uniform after dealing with illness, though some of the warmup signs pointed to Trent Hixson getting the nod at left guard.
With Gabe Ervin out, running back Jaquez Yant is on the travel roster. Marvin Scott III was not spotted.
The Huskers brought three quarterbacks on the trip: Adrian Martinez, Logan Smothers and Matt Masker. They had been bringing four but Heinrich Haarberg isn't on this one.
Kicking situation? Connor Culp is here, and was hitting well in warmups. Brendan Franke, who has been the kickoff specialist is also on the scene.
Preview: Nebraska football dips back into Big Ten play this weekend, as the Huskers hit the road to take on No. 20 Michigan State in a nationally-televised 6 p.m. CT kickoff. If you're unable to make the trip to see the game in person, here's how you canwatch, stream, and listen to the game.
Kickoff:6 p.m. CT atSpartan Stadium in East Lansing, Michigan.
TV Crew: Aaron Goldsmith and Mark Helfrich
Stream:Fox Sports App or fuboTV
Radio: Huskers Radio Network — Greg Sharpe, Matt Davison and Jeremiah Sirles
Live Radio Stream: huskers.com and the Huskers App
Nebraska enters the game at 2-2 on the season, following a hard-fought 23-16 loss at No. 3 Oklahoma on Saturday. The Huskers went toe-to-toe with the Sooners throughout the game, and limited Oklahoma to its fewest points in the past five seasons. The Huskers will be looking to even their Big Ten record after a season-opening loss at Illinois on Aug. 28. Nebraska will look to continue its strong defensive play in East Lansing. The Huskers have allowed just 33 combined points in the past three games, marking the Blackshirts' best three-game scoring defense stretch in 11 seasons.
Michigan State is off to a strong start to the 2021 season. After a 2-5 campaign in 2020, MSU stands at 3-0 to open the year after an impressive 38-17 victory at Miami on Saturday. The Spartans are 1-0 in Big Ten play after opening the season with an impressive 38-21 victory at defending Big Ten West champion Northwestern. The win at Miami vaulted the Spartans into the national polls, ranking No. 20 in the Associated Press Poll and No. 21 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. The Spartans have relied on a strong running game to power their impressive start. MSU is averaging 263.7 rushing yards per game to rank third in the Big Ten and 11th nationally.
“They are well-coached well-disciplined,” Nebraska head coach Scott Frost said of Michigan State this week. “They have been opportunistic with turnovers particularly in the last game. I think their running back is special. The quarterback has had a really good start to the season. Can do anything they ask him to do. They are just solid everywhere.
“When you look at Michigan State as long as I can remember it is a black and blue physical team. So we know we are in for a fist fight when we go up Saturday night. It is going to be a fun environment.”