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Nebraska 28, Michigan State 24

The SportsXchange

EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Junior quarterback Taylor Martinez kept Nebraska in the game with his legs. In the closing seconds, he won it with his arm.

Martinez threw a 6-yard scoring pass to Jamal Turner with six seconds remaining, giving the Cornhuskers a 28-24 victory over Michigan State Saturday at Spartan Stadium.

Martinez rushed for 205 yards -- including scoring runs of 71 and 35 yards -- on 17 carries for Nebraska, which remain tied with Michigan atop the Legends Division, each at 4-1.

Martinez was mostly ineffective as a passer, throwing three interceptions, but delivered on the game-winning 80-yard scoring drive. Ameer Abdullah had his fourth 100-yard rushing game in as many career starts, gaining 110 yards on 22 carries.

Overall, Nebraska had 313 rushing yards. The Huskers were averaging a Big Ten-best 264.1 rushing yards, while the Spartans were the conference leaders in rushing defense at 91.2 yards per game.

The Cornhuskers (7-3), who joined the Big Ten last season, are 7-0 all-time against Michigan State.

Le'Veon Bell powered for 188 yards on 36 carries and two touchdowns for the Spartans (5-5). Andrew Maxwell threw a 46-yard scoring pass to Tony Lippett.

Dan Conroy's 25-yard field goal capped off Michigan State's first possession of the second half and gave it a 17-14 advantage. Bell's second touchdown of the game, a one-yard plunge 40 seconds into the fourth quarter, pushed the Spartans' lead to 24-14. Darqueze Dennard's 27-yard interception return set up Bell's 10th rushing touchdown of the season.

Dennard denied the Cornhuskers once again early in the fourth quarter, picking off a Martinez pass at the Michigan State 3-yard line. The Cornhuskers converted the next time they had the ball, scoring on Martinez's 35-yard run along the right hash mark with 7:02 remaining to make it 24-21.

Dennard was whistled for pass interference in the end zone with 17 seconds left, giving Nebraska a first down at the 5-yard line. Two plays later, Martinez found Turner near the left corner of the end zone.

Martinez and Bell surpassed 100 yards rushing by halftime, which ended in a 14-14 tie. Martinez became the school's all-time career total offense leader with 8,161 yards, breaking Eric Crouch's record of 7,915 yards.

Bell gave the Spartans a first-quarter lead when he charged up the middle for an 11-yard scoring run. Martinez's 2-yard touchdown toss to Abdullah with 2:07 left in the opening quarter tied it at 7-7. Martinez's 17th scoring pass this season was set up by his 59-yard run.

Lippett's first career touchdown reception with 6:56 remaining in the half put the Spartans back on top. He beat double coverage to haul in Maxwell's 46-yard pass.

Martinez evened the score with 3:11 left when he faked a handoff to Abdullah, cut to the right and raced untouched down the sideline on his 71-yard run.

NOTES: Nebraska running back Rex Burkhead missed his second straight game with a knee injury. Spartans safety RJ Williamson sat out with an ankle injury. ... The Cornhuskers defeated the Spartans 50-10 in their only previous trip to East Lansing in 1995. ... Nebraska plays its next two games at home against Penn State and Minnesota, while the Spartans get a bye before a home game against Northwestern. ... Brett Maher's missed 30-yard, second-quarter field goal attempt was the Cornhuskers' first empty trip inside the red zone in Big Ten games this season.
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