Keeping Score

Wild Southern Miss rally comes up short in 36-28 loss at Nebraska

The Southern Miss football team simply ran out of time Saturday in Lincoln, Neb.

Nebraska pulled out the win, 36-28, with USM quarterback Nick Mullens being sacked as time expired at the Cornhuskers' 48.

Nebraska led 22-0 at the half after USM missed a pair of field goals and fumbled the ball away in the first 30 minutes.

USM twice cut the Nebraska lead to 8 points in the fourth quarter at 29-21 on Mullens' 19-yard touchdown pass to Casey Martin with 12:26 left and at 36-28 on Jalen Richard's 1-yard touchdown run with 6:55 remaining.

Following the Richard touchdown, Nebraska drove to the USM 7, where Drew Brown missed a 24-yard field goal. 

USM took over at its own 20 with 29 seconds remaining and no timeouts. Mullens completed passes of 19 and 21 yards to Casey Martin to push USM to the Nebraska 40, but time ran off the clock after Mullens was sacked.

The Southern Miss staff put the offense in the hands of Mullens in the second half and the junior carved up the Nebraska secondary.

Mullens completed 26-of-41 passes for 447 yards and two touchdowns, becoming the first USM quarterback to ever throw for over 400 yards in a game twice in his career.

USM had five players with 60 yards receiving or more.

Mike Thomas caught five passes for 121 yards. Casey Martin had eight catches for 102 yards and two scores. D.J. Thompson had two catches for 78 yards, Ito Smith caught five passes for 71 yards and Jalen Richard pulled in four passes for 60 yards.

Junior safety D'Nerius Antoine had a big game on defense for USM, registering a team high eight tackles. He also made a diving interception, forced a fumble and recovered it.

The USM defense did a decent job in the red zone, but gave up 610 yards of offense.

Nebraska quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr., a native of Gulfport, completed 23-of-35 passes for 368 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He also ran seven times for 63 yards and a touchdown.

Southern Miss will return to Hattiesburg for a 6 p.m. game Saturday against North Texas.