Cowboys and Huskers Renew Old Big Eight and Later Big 12 Rivalry with Newly Scheduled Series

Robert Allen

(Oklahoma State University athletic media relations contributed to this story.)

STILLWATER -- A football series that dates back to 1960 will be rekindled as Oklahoma State and Nebraska have agreed to a home-and-home series. The first game will take the Cowboys back to historic Memorial Stadium in Lincoln on Sept. 16, 2034 with the return game the next September inside Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater on Sept. 15, 2035.

The Cowboys and Huskers met every year from 1960-95 as members of the Big Eight Conference, then squared off regularly as members of the Big 12 from 1995-2010. Nebraska leads the overall series 37-5-1, but the games over the years were so often very competitive even with Nebraska as a constant heavy favorite. The Cowboys were often a thorn for very talented Husker teams. Oklahoma State won two of the final three and three of the final five head-to-head match-ups before the Huskers joined the Big Ten. Those Oklahoma State wins proved costly for Nebraska as one cost an athletic director his job, the 45-14 win in Lincoln in 2007. The other two severely loosened the ties for Nebraska head coaches. 

Some other classic games with Nebraska included 14-10 loss in 1976 when the Cowboys tied Colorado and Nebraska for the Big Eight title. It would have been the Cowboys championship uncontested if the officials had seen OSU quarterback Charlie Weatherbie across the goal line on a fourth and one sneak. Many that were there absolutely believe Weatherbie scored. 

In 1973 Nebraska had a loaded team and came into Stillwater only to be tied by the Cowboys 17-17. Nebraska head coach Tom Osborne, in his first year as Husker head coach in succeeding Bob Devaney, in jest, blamed the movie that Nebraska saw the night before, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia.

"We're at that old cinema in the Cowboy Mall by campus and the entire movie these cowboys are carrying around the head of this other cowboy and I think it totally confused my players," laughed Osborne.

In 1983 the Huskers had a version of their triplets with quarterback Turner Gill, running back Mike Rozier, and wingback Irving Fryar. An Oklahoma State team coached by Jimmy Johnson nearly upset the vaunted Huskers 14-10 at Lewis Field in Stillwater. Later that season Miami, Fla. and head coach Howard Schnellenberger would upset Nebraska in the Orange Bowl to win the National Championship. Schnellenberger resigned to take a pro coaching job in the USFL and Johnson left OSU to coach Miami. 

Then who can forget the "We're going to try to win 3-0 game in 1984. Rookie head coach Pat Jones of the Cowboys told the ABC sidelines reporter at halftime that his team was going to try to win the game 3-0, their lead at the time. Nebraska won 17-3. 

Kendall Hunter crashes over the goal line in a 51-41 loss to Nebraska in 2010.Pat Kinnison - Pokes Report chief photographer

It will be good to get the Cowboys and the Huskers back together again.   

In addition to this latest series with Nebraska, Oklahoma State has already announced future series match-ups with Power Five conference opponents Arizona State (2022 and 2023), Arkansas (2024, 2027, 2032 and 2033) and Oregon (2025 and 2026). In-state foe Tulsa will also be a regular opponent in coming years, as the Cowboys and Golden Hurricane will clash in 2020 and 2021, then will go head-to-head every year from 2024-31.

For tickets to OSU football games, fans can reach, call 1-877-ALL-4-OSU or contact the athletics ticket office via text message at 877-255-4678.

Comments (5)
No. 1-3

What does this get us? Recruiting edge in Nebraska and South Dakota? This is right up there with playing Tulsa every year. We need to play lesser teams in highly populated areas where exposure is needed.


I like these power games. Tickets cost too much to watch OSU/N. Texas play. Even if it's in our recruiting back yard. And nationally and ranking wise, these games are much more impactful if you win. That also affects recruiting, especially against Nebraska.


Only bad thing, I'll have to be alive and mobile at 84 to see this game live!