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Tom Osborne and Nebraska Football Winning Seasons

The Game before the Money Podcast featured two episodes with legendary NCAA coach Tom Osborne of the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

Tom Osborne Coaching Stats

Here’s a rundown of some of Tom Osborne’s accomplishments as head coach at Nebraska (1973-1997).

  • Three national championships in a four-year span
  • Won at LEAST 9 games for each of his 25 seasons as head coach
  • Won at LEAST 11 games each of his last 5 seasons
  • Tom Osborne had 255 career wins in the regular season
  • Nebraska won 12 bowl games under Tom Osborne
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PHOTO: Nebraska after the 1974 Cotton Bowl.

Not even Bear Bryant can claim a run of 5 seasons with at least 11 wins. There’s no reason to compare Tom Osborne with Bear Bryant. I always say once you get to a certain level, it’s really difficult to compare greatness to greatness and say that one is better than the other.

Current coaches such as Nick Saban and Dabo Swinney have topped Osborne’s streak of 5 seasons with at least 11 wins but schools schedule more games than in Coach Osborne’s era.

There is no question that Tom Osborne had one of the best coaching runs in the history of college football.

LISTEN: Tom Osborne talks about his time as Nebraska’s head coach.


The Nebraska Cornhuskers winning tradition stretches back to Coach Osborne’s predecessor, Bob Devaney. Nebraska posted 36 consecutive winning seasons during the Bob Devaney and Tom Osborne eras. When you add the next 4 years under Coach Osborne’s successor, Frank Solich, the Nebraska Cornhuskers enjoyed 40 consecutive winning seasons. Those are winning seasons, finishing with a winning percentage OVER .500.  

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PHOTO: Coach Osborne and Coach Devaney

LISTEN: Coach Tom Osborne talks about his time as an assistant coach under Nebraska head coach Bob Devaney.

Looking for a great NFL history book? Check out The Game Before the Money: Voices of the Men Who Built the NFL available at — Amazon.comBarnes and NobleUniversity of Nebraska Press

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