Oklahoma and Nebraska Officially Renew Rivalry Game

By Justine Hendricks
Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

The Oklahoma Sooners and Nebraska Cornhuskers had a legendary college football rivalry, but when the Huskers left for the Big Ten, they cut ties with their former Big 12 opponent.

The traditional rivalry game was just one casualty of the massive college football realignment of the last few seasons, but Big Red and Crimson and Cream will again face off on the football field in 2021-22 as the Sooners and Huskers renew their rivalry with a home-and-home series.

Nebraska athletic director Tom Osborne, who is retiring after this season, said a few weeks ago that one of his goals before retiring was to get the OU game back on the Cornhuskers’ schedule.

The schools agreed to the series “in principle” earlier this month but made the official announcement today.

“Our rivalry with Oklahoma has been one of the great traditional matchups in the history of college football. The games between the two schools were generally to decide a conference championship, and many times helped determine the national champion. Those matchups were always played with great intensity on the field, but with a great deal of respect from both sides and among the fan bases,” Osborne said in a statement.

Nebraska will play in Norman on September 18, 2021, on the 50-year anniversary of “The Game of the Century” between then-No. 1 Nebraska and No. 2 Oklahoma, which the Huskers won, 35-31, en route to winning the national championship.

In 2022, the Sooners will play at Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium on September 17.

The teams have played each other 86 times, including a run of 71 straight seasons between 1927 and 1998. They have not faced each other since the Big 12 Championship game in 2010, which the Sooners won in a 23-20 thriller.

Oklahoma owns a 46-35-3 advantage in the series, but Nebraska is 9-6 since 1991. Each team holds a home-field advantage in the series; OU is 23-16 when the series is played in Norman, and Nebraska is 20-17-2 at home.

It will, as usual, be a big draw for fans of both teams, especially if both teams are highly ranked in those years, although it won’t be a battle for the conference championship like so many of the meetings between the two.

“Classic rivalries like Oklahoma-Nebraska are part of college football’s historic fabric. The ability to rekindle a fabled series between two tradition-rich programs and two extremely loyal and passionate fan bases was very important to both universities,” OU athletic director Joe Castiglione said.

Justine Hendricks is a Pac-12 and ACC Columnist for Rant Sports and is the founder and editor of Sports in StilettosFollow her on Twitter: @SportsStilettos


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