Top 10 College Football Bowl Game Moments and Storylines
As the end of another exciting college football season approaches, there have been some memorable games and exciting events.
Florida and Oklahoma square off for the National "Championship" tonight, but it's just one of 34 glorious Bowl Games that have taken place over the past 19 days. Let's take a look back at the other 33. In chronological order...
Southern Miss Upsets Troy in OT
Trailing 27-17 with 7:30 left in the fourth quarter, Southern Miss scored a 35-yard TD on 4th-and-1. After hitting a FG to send the game to OT, K Brent Barefoot (what a name for a kicker) hit the eventual game-winner as Troy's attempt was blocked. Southern Miss won the New Orleans Bowl, 30-27.
TCU Ends Boise State's Quest for Perfection
After being left out of the BCS games thanks to higher-ranked Utah (more on them later), Boise State had something to prove against TCU.
In one of the more exciting and hard-fought games of the season, the Horned Frogs prevailed after trailing 10-0 midway through the first quarter. In opposite fashion of their Fiesta Bowl win over Oklahoma, Boise State's dream ended when TCU intercepted a lateral on the final play of the game, winning the Poinsettia Bowl, 17-16.
What a Catch!
Although the Tar Heels lost to West Virginia, 31-30 in the Car Care Bowl, Hakeem Nicks had one of the greatest individual performances by a receiver in a Bowl.
Nicks had eight receptions for 217 and three TDs. This includes an incredible catch where he pinned the ball behind his back his left hand, and then grabbed it with his right hand on the other side of his body, all while in motion.
Wake Me When It's Over
The lowest scoring bowl game since 1959. 20 punts. Zero touchdowns. Oregon State's Justin Kahut's 44-yard field goal with 2:24 left in the second quarter was the only scoring in this one, as Oregon State beats Pitt 3-0 in the Sun Bowl.
An Old-Fashioned Stomping
After winning the national title last year, expectations were high for Les Miles and LSU. Things didn't go as planned for the Tigers, as they ended the regular season 7-5, with a 3-5 conference record. Things were so bad that they were underdogs to ACC dwelling Georgia Tech.
That's why they don't play the game on paper. LSU absolutely destroyed GT, scoring four TDs in the second quarter alone and going on to win 38-3 in the Peach Bowl.
A small consolation down in the Bayou after a disappointing season.
USC Beats the Big Ten...Again
Another year, another Rose Bowl. For the third year in a row, USC defeated an overmatched Big Ten opponent in the Rose Bowl. This year, they beat Penn State by a score of 38-24, although the game wasn't nearly that close.
Quarterback Mark Sanchez threw for a career high 413 yards, including 405 of those in the first 48 minutes of the game. Another disappointing season for the Trojans, who have no room for error while playing in the Pac-10.
If A Team Wins a BCS Bowl Game, But No One is Watching, Does it Still Count?
In a BCS Bowl Game that pitted No. 12 Big East Champion Cincinnati and No. 20 ACC Champion Virginia Tech, plenty of good tickets were still available. The Orange Bowl earned a 6.1 Nielsen rating, less than half of the 12.6 earned by the Rose Bowl earlier in the day.
I'm pretty sure more people would have watched Boise State or Texas Tech or pretty much anyone in this game. Nothing against the seasons these two schools had, but this is not the New Year's Day Bowl Game America wanted to see.
Oh yeah: VT 20, Cincinnati 7.
The "Real" National Champions?
A non-BCS school vs. an SEC power. The former No. 1 team in the land vs. a team no one had seen. Utah had no chance, right?
After scoring on their first three possessions to take a 21-0 lead, the Utes went on cruise control, beating No. 4 Alabama 31-17 in the Sugar Bowl. Utah finished the season 13-0, the only undefeated team in college football.
To see how I really feel about this game, take a look here.
What a Finish
The Ohio State Buckeyes came into the Fiesta Bowl on the heels of losses in the past two National Championship Games to SEC teams. Texas came in as a one-loss team with a true claim that they should be playing in the title game over Oklahoma, who they had beaten earlier this year.
Texas was supposed to roll.
They didn't. Trailing 6-3 at halftime, the Longhorns scored two unanswered touchdowns to take a 17-6 lead, but Ohio State rattled off 15 straight after that to take a 21-17 lead with 2:05 to play.
I remember thinking one thing after they scored: "That's way too much time left on the clock."
It was, as Texas, led by QB Colt McCoy, marched down the field, scoring on a 26-yard strike to Quan Cosby (above) with 16 seconds to play for a dramatic come-from-behind 24-21 win.
The One That Got Away
And Florida wins the BCS title...
The Gators defeated Oklahoma 24-14 to win their third title in school history. The story of the night was the one everyone was talking about in the month-long build up to this game. Florida's SEC defense vs. Oklahoma's Big 12 offense.
Oklahoma let two scoring opportunities slip through their fingers inside Florida's 10-yard line, which proved to be the difference in the game. The most crucial was immediately before halftime, when with 10 seconds left and no timeouts, Oklahoma attempted one final shot at the end zone, which was ultimately intercepted (see above). This allowed the game to be tied at the break.
Florida scored first after the intermission and never looked back.