The Athletic lists Colorado’s 62-36 win over Nebraska as the 20th-most influential game of the 2000s

·2 min read

The college football landscape looks much different today than it did 20 years ago, obviously. Some programs have risen while others have fallen out of national relevance.

For the Buffs, who’ve had their own struggles in the 2000s, there’s some joy in knowing Nebraska hasn’t done much either. You could even make an argument that the Cornhuskers’ decline started with their 62-36 loss to Colorado in 2001. The Huskers came into Boulder with an 11-0 record and were dismantled by the eventual Big 12 champion Buffs. Nebraska ended that 2001 season with a .846 winning percentage (11-2) and since then, it hasn’t eclipsed .769. But again, it’s a similar story for CU.

Still, The Athletic’s Andy Staples listed Colorado’s 62-36 win as the 20th-most influential college football game of the 2000s.

Here’s what Staples wrote:

It’s difficult to explain to a person younger than 25 how fearsome Nebraska’s teams used to be. They didn’t just beat opponents. They humiliated them. The 1995 national championship team was the most dominant in the sport’s history, and had the ball bounced differently in three or four games, Nebraska might have won five consecutive national titles in the 1990s.

That’s what made the Cornhuskers’ Black Friday visit to Boulder so shocking. They entered the game with an 11-0 record, but they never had a chance in a 62-36 loss. Colorado beat Nebraska the way Nebraska had beaten everyone else for so long. The Buffaloes led 28-3 at the end of the first quarter. Colorado back Chris Brown ran for 198 yards and six touchdowns.

Thanks to Tennessee beating Florida in its regular-season finale and LSU beating Tennessee in the SEC title game, the Huskers and Heisman winner Eric Crouch won the right to get destroyed by eventual national champ Miami in the Rose Bowl, but the bigger loss happened at Folsom Field.

No longer would opponents fear Nebraska. As a new century dawned, an era ended.

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Story originally appeared on Buffaloes Wire