LINCOLN — What looked like a Nebraska knockout turned into a fight to the finish Saturday night at Memorial Stadium.
Make that an overtime fight to the finish.
Cody Glenn's 1-yard run in overtime gave the No. 21 Huskers a 39-32 victory over Kansas in the Big 12 opener for both teams.
But the game actually wasn't over until Adam Barmann's fourth-down fade pass to Marcus Henry in the end zone fell incomplete.
"I think it was one of the greatest games I've ever been a part of," said NU safety Andrew Shanle, who had two interceptions in the game. "This is definitely one I'll remember."
Nebraska improved to 4-1 on the season, while Kansas fell to 3-2.
It was Nebraska's 19th straight victory over the Jayhawks in Lincoln dating back to 1968. It gave the Huskers a 10-1 record in Big 12 Conference openers and is NU's 31st win in the last 32 conference openers.
It was also the Huskers' 20th straight victory in a conference home opener.
Nebraska is now 24-2 in night games at Memorial Stadium and 6-0 under coach Bill Callahan.
Callahan was happy to get a win against the Jayhawks.
"You get into games like this in conference competition," Callahan said. "I think that's the nature of the North division.
"Give Kansas credit. They did an excellent job of mixing it up."
Nebraska quarterback Zac Taylor threw for 395 yards and four touchdowns.
But Taylor, who entered the game completing 70 percent of his passes, completed just 15 of 33 attempts against the Jayhawks.
"It wasn't my best game," Taylor said. "There were a lot of inconsistencies in my throws. I missed some throws I shouldn't have, but we bounced back."
Barmann torched the NU secondary for 405 yards passing by completing 27 of 54 passes. Jon Cornish did the damage on the ground with 145 yards on 31 carries.
"He's an excellent back," Callahan said. "There's no doubt about it. Cornish is outstanding. We knew that coming into the game and he proved it again today."
Callahan said the Huskers need to improve as they head into the remainder of Big 12 play.
"We can coach better and play better," Callahan said. "We did show resiliency to hang in there. I think that shows a lot of character by our kids."
Glenn's winning run was set up by a 21-yard pass from Taylor to Nate Swift. Swift caught the ball as he was going out of bounds. Kansas challenged the call, but officials upheld the ruling on the field.
They then looked at it again to see where to spot the ball and ended up putting it on the half-yard line.
"It was ideal coverage to run that route against," Callahan said of the play. "I thought Nate did a nice job of flattening out. I don't know if it showed on the replay, but I thought from where I was standing that he extended the ball across the goal line."
Glenn then took the handoff from Taylor and waltzed through a big hole in the left side of the line for what proved to be the winning score.
Barmann led the Jayhawks on an 11-play, 81-yard drive in the final minutes of regulation play to tie the game at 32. Barmann hit Brian Murph with a 26-yard scoring strike with 46 seconds left to tie the score.
Nebraska had taken a 32-25 lead on Taylor's 75-yard TD pass to Hardy on a third and 18 play with 4:13 left in regulation. Hardy caught the ball at about the KU 35, spun around as he broke a tackle and raced the rest of the way into the end zone.
Kansas had taken the lead on a 1-yard pass from Barmann to Derek Fine with 6:32 left in the fourth quarter. Mangino elected to go for two, but Jay Moore sacked Barmann to keep the Huskers within one of the Jayhawks.
The Huskers opened the scoring in a hurry.
It took just two plays and 55 seconds for the Huskers to get on the board. On the second play of the game, Terrence Nunn beat Kansas cornerback Anthony Webb down the left sidelines. Taylor hit Nunn in stride, and the junior raced 75 yards to give NU a 7-0 lead.
The Huskers struck again early in the quarter after Shanle picked off his second interception of the game and returned it 25 yards to the KU 6.
On the next play, Taylor found Todd Peterson in the corner of the end zone for his second TD pass of the day as the Huskers took a 14-0 lead with 10:20 left in the opening period.
The touchdown was Peterson's first this season and the third of his career.
Taylor also hit Hardy with a 78-yard TD pass later in the second quarter. The junior caught the ball near midfield, then burst past the Kansas defensive back and raced untouched into the end zone.
"The play he made early in the game, the up-and-out on the rookie corner, I thought that was an excellent move," Callahan said. "The one in the third quarter was an outstanding play. I thought Frantz showed excellent speed and power."
Kansas got some offense going early in the second quarter. The Jayhawks began the period on their own 5, but Barmann hit Dexton Fields with a 30-yard strike to move the ball out to the 36.
Barmann then found Derek Fine on a 40-yard pass down to the 1. After a penalty moved the ball to inside the 1, Brandon McAnderson then plunged over from there to pull Kansas to within 17-7 with 11:45 left in the first half.
Kansas threatened again late in the first half after the Jayhawks moved inside the NU 15. On third and 6 from the 12, Barmann tried to find Marcus Henry in the corner of the end zone, but Andre Jones picked it off to end the scoring threat.
But Taylor threw three straight incompletions, the Jayhawks got another shot and Barmann took advantage of the opportunity.
The Kansas quarterback completed 6 of 10 passes as the Jayhawks moved the ball down to the Nebraska 13. On third down, Barmann attempted to scramble but Bo Ruud threw him for a 2-yard loss back to the 15.
After two Nebraska timeouts, Scott Webb nailed a 31-yard field goal to pull KU to within 24-10 at the half.
Kansas inched closer early in the second half by taking advantage of Nebraska turnovers. With the ball on the NU 15, Taylor was sacked by Russell Brorsen, lost the ball and Kansas' Joe Mortensen recovered on the 8.
Cornish scored on a sweep to the right on the first play. The extra-point snap was bobbled and the Jayhawks were within 24-16 with 12:01 left in the third quarter.
The Huskers then got the ground game going with Cody Glenn carrying the load. Glenn carried five straight times for 32 yards, but on the fifth try Joe Mortensen forced a fumble and Aqib Talib recovered on the KU 39.
The Jayhawks moved all the way to the NU 18 before the drive stalled. Webb followed with a 35-yard field goal to make it 24-19 with 5:47 left in the third quarter.