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49 yards: An Answered Prayer

2012-06-27T23:30:00Z 2015-05-16T22:44:45Z 49 yards: An Answered PrayerBy BRIAN CHRISTOPHERSON / Lincoln Journal Star JournalStar.com

The distance: 49 yards

The stars: Ron Kellogg III, Jordan Westerkamp

The date: Nov. 2, 2013

The outcome: Huskers 27, Northwestern 24

The story: Game over. All Northwestern had to do was stop a fourth-and-15. Ameer Abdullah caught a pass several yards short of the sticks and two Wildcats were in his way.

Abullah somehow fought through them. Lunged. Gained 16 when he should have had 12. A heartbeat. Barely detectable.

When the Huskers called for their desperation play "Geronimo," there were four seconds left. Ron Kellogg III dropped back, danced a little to buy time, then put his entire body into a throw. The football traveled 55 yards in the air.

Footballs are shaped funny and sometimes they bounce funny. Sometimes they bounce to a wide receiver with a mustache hiding in the back. Jordan Westerkamp caught it and the ground shook. Teammates mobbed him. O-lineman Jeremiah Sirles, at the bottom of a victory pile of 100-plus men, was having a panic attack.

Kellogg had ripped off his helmet and ran the other way screaming. “Insane,” Kellogg would say a few minutes later. “People are asking me if I know what I did, and I still don’t know."

Replaces... a fourth-quarter punt return in 1984 by Shane Swanson that broke open a 3-3 tie.

Reach the writer at 402-473-7439 or bchristopherson@journalstar.com. On Twitter @HuskerExtraBC.

Copyright 2015 JournalStar.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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