Leading by 24 points, everything was going according to plan for No. 3 Nebraska.
The Cornhuskers were on their way to a convincing victory that would bolster their position in the Bowl Championship Series and send them soaring into the Big 12 championship game against No. 7 Texas.
In a matter of minutes, it all fell apart.
Eric Crouch's one-yard touchdown run gave the Huskers a 33-30 overtime victory over Colorado today, but wasting a seemingly insurmountable lead in a nine-minute span of the fourth quarter could damage Nebraska's bid for its fourth national title in six seasons.
"There is no more talk of a national championship," Huskers defensive back Mike Brown said. "All the talk is of winning the Big 12 championship."
Nebraska (10-1, 7-1 Big 12) still has an outside chance to overtake No. 2 Virginia Tech in the BCS standings and gain an invitation to the Sugar Bowl against top-ranked Florida State.
Virginia Tech (11-0) ended its season today with a 38-14 victory over No. 22 Boston College and must wait to see how Nebraska fares against Texas on Dec. 4.
"I don't know where we are now," said Huskers running back Dan Alexander, who ran for a career-high 180 yards on 17 carries. "We still have a chance at the Big 12 title. That has been our goal all along anyway."
Texas is the only team to beat Nebraska this season, and Colorado (6-5, 5-3) came within a couple feet of becoming the second. Jeremy Aldrich's 34-yard field goal attempt was wide right as time expired.
"That's about as close as you can get, I think, without winning," Colorado Coach Gary Barnett said.
Aldrich made a 33-yard field goal in overtime, but Alexander had an 11-yard run to set up Crouch's game-winning plunge off left tackle to give Nebraska its eighth straight win over Colorado.
Nebraska, which reached 10 victories for the 20th time since 1963, led 27-3 entering the fourth quarter before Mike Moschetti led the Buffaloes back with three touchdown passes in the final nine minutes.
Colorado converted a fumble into a 12-yard touchdown pass to John Minardi with 8 minutes 47 seconds remaining and Moschetti capped an 80-yard drive with a three-yard touchdown pass to Daniel Graham five minutes later.
After recovering an onside kick at its 44, Colorado tied the score with 2:59 left when Moschetti found Javon Green in the corner of the end zone for a 21-yard score.
Game summary on Page D11
CAPTION: Colorado lineman Victor Rogers holds his head in despair after Nebraska's touchdown in overtime.