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5 yards: The Turner Turnaround

5 yards: The Turner Turnaround

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Nebraska vs. Michigan State, 11.03.12

Nebraska wide receiver Jamal Turner (10) pulls in the game-winning pass from quarterback Taylor Martinez in the closing seconds of the fourth quarter on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012, at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, Mich.

The distance: 5 yards

The star: Jamal Turner

The date: Nov. 3, 2012

The outcome: Huskers 28, Michigan State 24

The story: There was this strange play in the fourth quarter. Husker quarterback Taylor Martinez fumbled right in front of three Spartans. Yet none of them could complete the simple act of picking up the football. Martinez almost scooped up his own fumble and ran it for what would have been an 80-yard touchdown. Finally, offensive tackle Jeremiah Sirles fell on it.

It was humorous. It was also enough of a break to convince Kenny Bell the Huskers were going to come back and win.

Sure enough, with six seconds left Jamal Turner caught the first touchdown of his career, the finisher to an 80-yard drive that included a fourth-and-10 conversion. It kept Nebraska's trek toward a Big Ten Legends title. (Yeah, Legends and Leaders. Remember that silliness?)

Martinez threw three picks but also had 365 yards of offense. He ran for 205. He had completed just 15 of 35 passes before he hit Turner.

But when he did ... sweet relief. “It wasn’t a celebration," Turner explained. "It was more of a hug, I love you."

Replacing... Tommie Frazier's leap into the end zone against Missouri in 1992. Not an easy call here. Frazier's score was symbolic. That game was his first start. A leap into a dominating run of Husker football. But in a single game setting, Turner's touchdown was as dramatic as they come.

Replaces.. Tommie Frazier's leap into the end zone against Missouri in 1992. Not an easy call here. Frazier's score was symbolic. That game was his first start. A leap into a dominating run of Husker football. But in a single game setting, Turner's touchdown was as dramatic as they come.

Reach Brian Christopherson at bchristopherson@journalstar.com or 402-473-7439. You can follow him on Twitter @HuskerExtraBC.

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