During the past seven seasons, 63 of the 65 BCS conference teams have beaten a team ranked higher than 20th in the AP poll. Indiana and Syracuse have done it. Iowa State and Washington State have done it. Stanford, Vanderbilt and even Baylor have done it. Just two teams have not.
One of them is the Duke Blue Devils, and that should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed college football at any point in the past 70 years. But the other? Oh, the other is a whole different story altogether. That second team is the mighty Nebraska Cornhuskers, a program that is steeped in tradition and ruled most of the 1990s with an iron fist. Unless you're a faithful reader of the Omaha World-Herald, it's unlikely you guessed that one.
But it's true. Since beating old rival Oklahoma in a No. 2 vs. No. 3 showdown in October 2001, Nebraska's highest-ranked victim has been No. 20 Michigan in the 2005 Alamo Bowl. So, starting with a 62-36 wipeout at the hands of Colorado on Thanksgiving weekend seven years ago, the Huskers are 0-19 against the top 19. Let that one sink in for a second: Nebraska and Duke are the only two major conference teams that can't beat a team ranked higher than 20th.
Some (Oregon and Colorado fans come to mind) might argue that karma is coming back to get the Huskers after they sneaked into the 2001 national title game even though they didn't reach the Big 12 title game. Whatever the case may be, the streak -- one that spans the tenures of three different head coaches -- is no fluke. Saturday's close loss at Texas Tech was more the exception than the rule. In those 19 losses, the average score has been 37-19.