In the midst of Nebraska's 24-3 win over Missouri on Saturday, a somber moment arrived with 10:54 left in the second quarter when Husker junior tight end Matt Herian was injured.
Missouri linebacker James Kinney unintentionally fell on Herian's left leg, causing it to bend the wrong way while the tight end was trying to block for running back Cory Ross.
Herian — who leads the team with 24 catches for 308 yards and is considered an NFL prospect — had to be carted off the field after about a 10-minute stoppage of play.
The injury happened a few feet from the Nebraska sideline. Husker players circled around him at about the 35-yard-line and looked on in silence while doctors treated him.
After the game, Nebraska head coach Bill Callahan glumly said: "I don't know how it looked. I didn't look, but from what I understand, he has a fracture. To what extent, I don't know."
Callahan said he'd probably know all the details by Sunday. But given the comments from offensive coordinator Jay Norvell, it seems coaches are preparing to finish this season without Herian.
"You know, Matt's really a special player to us. It's a shame that he got hurt today, but you know it's a part of the game and sometimes it happens," Norvell said. "Guys got to step up and fill his void, but he'll be hard to replace because he's such an excellent player."
Redshirt freshman J.B. Phillips saw a lot of playing time in wake of Herian's injury.
Phillps is regarded as much more of a blocker than a pass catcher.