Huskers, KU battled for Big Six crown

· 3 min read

Huskers, KU battled for Big Six crown

Charter Week photo of the day
Some 7,000 fans packed the Coliseum to watch a 1936 basketball battle between the Huskers and visiting Kansas Jayhawks. The game, played in the Coliseum, was a battle for the Big Six Conference championship.
Archives and Special Collections
Some 7,000 fans packed the Coliseum to watch a 1936 basketball battle between the Huskers and visiting Kansas Jayhawks. The Cornhusker Marching Band played at the half. Kansas had a 23-13 lead at the break.

In this iconic image from the University Archives and Special Collections, the Cornhusker Marching Band takes to the court during halftime festivities of the Nebraska-Kansas men’s basketball game in the Coliseum on Feb. 23, 1936.

More than 7,000 fans attended the contest, in which Nebraska sought its first Big Six Conference crown in 20 years. Led by legendary Kansas coach Forrest “Phog” Allen, the visiting Jayhawks held off the Huskers down the stretch, earning a 43-36 victory. The Jayhawks went 10-0 in league play to collect the 1935-36 Big Six championship. Nebraska, coached by William Browne, finished the season at 13-8 overall and took second in conference play with a 7-3 record.

The game featured added drama as Allen and his son, Milton “Milt” Allen, argued during practice earlier in the week. The disagreement resulted in Milton being benched for the first half of the Nebraska game.

Detail of the Coliseum scoreboard, which featured the last names of the starting five for each team and a halftime score of 23-13 in favor of the Jayhawks.
Archives and Special Collections
Detail of the Coliseum scoreboard, which featured the last names of the starting five for each team and a halftime score of 23-13 in favor of the Jayhawks. The Aggies banner at right represented Kansas State University. Members of the Big Six Conference in the 1930s were Nebraska, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Kansas State and Iowa State.

The 1935-36 Jayhawks won the first 21 games of the season, a college basketball record that stood until 1996-97.

In the 1936-37 season, the Huskers went 8-2 in Big Six play, earning a tie with Kansas for the conference championship. Members of the Big Six Conference in the 1930s were Nebraska, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Kansas State and Iowa State.

Today, Nebraska’s weeklong, statewide celebration of its 150th anniversary continues with a halftime celebration on the hardwood at Pinnacle Bank Arena. The event is part of the Nebraska-Minnesota men’s basketball game that tips at 8 p.m. Tickets to the game are sold out, but the game will be televised on BTN.

Learn more about Charter Week at Nebraska and the N150 celebration.

Detail of the Cornhusker Marching Band, including the wooden frames that supported the basketball hoops and backboards.
Archives and Special Collections
Detail of the Cornhusker Marching Band, including the frames that supported the basketball hoops and backboards.

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