This Day in History—Oct. 24
Colorado on Oct. 24—5-10
1891 – Colorado Mines – L 10-6;
1903 – Nebraska L – 31-0;
1908 – Colorado State – W 8-0;
1925 – Utah – L 12-7;
1931 – Colorado State – L 19-6;
1936 – Colorado State – W 9-7;
1942 – Colorado State – W 34-7;
1953 – Oklahoma – L 27-20;
1959 – Arizona – W 18-0;
1964 – Nebraska – L 21-3;
1970 – Missouri – L 30-16;
1981 – Iowa State – L 17-10;
1987 – Oklahoma – L 24-7;
1992 – Kansas State – W 54-7;
1998 – Texas Tech – L 33-17.
Oct. 24th—Colorado—best game on this date
No. 9 Colorado v. Kansas State— Oct. 24, 1992
[The Buffs in 1992 were looking to "four-pete" as Big Eight champions, and were undefeated through the first part of the 1992 season. A 24-24 tie with Oklahoma had dropped the seventh ranked Buffs to ninth, but kept in tact the Buffs' title hopes.]
The 24-24 tie was satisfying only because of the comeback. The Sooners had been struggling in 1992, but the Buffs made Oklahoma look like world-beaters in surrendering seven turnovers. “I feel very fortunate to get out of here with a tie under the circumstances,” said McCartney in his post-game comments. “This keeps us unbeaten (5-0-1, 1-0-1 in Big Eight play) and keeps alive a lot of the things we want to do this season.”
Oct. 24—Boulder No. 9 Colorado 54, Kansas State 7
The ninth-ranked Buffs controlled an entire game for the first time in 1992, dominating Kansas State 54-7. Colorado scored early and often, lighting up the scoreboard on seven of its first 11 possessions in cruising to a 30-0 halftime lead before a sold-out Folsom Field crowd of 52,235. The Wildcats, with a respectable 3-2 record coming into Boulder, left town without an offensive touchdown, scoring only on a an interception return after the game was well in hand.
”It would be an understatement to say that the defense was dominant,” said McCartney. “The fact of the matter is I can’t remember a time our defense was so dominant in a game.” The numbers backed up the Colorado head coach. Kansas State was held to three first downs (zero- for-10 on third down attempts), and 16 total yards. The ineptitude of the Wildcats led to thirteen punts, 10 of which were returned for 167 yards by senior cornerback and kick return specialist Deon Figures. Both of Figures’ numbers set school records, with the yardage record surpassing a mark set by Byron “Whizzer” White against Utah in 1936.
On offense, Kordell Stewart returned to the helm (despite a broken wrist) to lead the way, passing and running for first half touchdowns. Also noteworthy on a day when McCartney could afford to scout out his young talent, two freshmen scored their first career touchdowns for Colorado. Running back Rashaan Salaam scored on a two-yard run in the second quarter, while Duke Tobin connected with wide receiver Rae Carruth on a 20-yard scoring strike to close out the scoring in the fourth.
The Buffs were now 6-0-1, 2-0-1 in conference play. As fate would have it, when the Associated Press poll came out the week after the Kansas State game, Colorado was tied for 8th in the nation with 1,046 total points. The team the Buffs were tied with? It was none other than the opponent up next on the calendar—the Nebraska Cornhuskers.
[The Buffs would fall to Nebraska in Lincoln, 52-7, in the "Halloween massacre" the following week. The Buffs would win their remaining Big Eight games to finish the regular season with a 9-1-1 record, 5-1-1 in Big Eight play. A 26-22 loss to No. 6 Syracuse in the Fiesta Bowl would drop the Buffs to 13th in the final polls.]
Best Games in College Football History— Oct. 24
1964— No. 5 Nebraska 21, Colorado 3
Colorado was only 1-4 on the 1964 season coming into the contest against the undefeated Cornhuskers, but the Buffs hung tough for much of the game. CU was up 3-0 in the second quarter, when Buff defensive back Hale Irwin almost intercepted a pass from Nebraska’s Bob Churchich, but the ball instead fell into the arms of Huskers’ halfback Kent McCloughan, who took it in for a 53 yard touchdown and a change in momentum. Another familiar name, Frank Solich, scored the second touchdown for Nebraska. The Cornhuskers went on to win the Big Eight, but fell to second-ranked Arkansas in the Cotton Bowl to finish with a 9-2 record, sixth in the final poll (taken before the bowl game).
1970 – No. 8 Stanford 9, No. 16 UCLA 7
Before 83,518 fans, the largest crowd to see UCLA play an opponent in the L.A. Coliseum other than USC, the Cardinal held on to beat the Bruins. UCLA did hold Stanford quarterback Jim Plunkett without a touchdown pass for the first time in his career, but a 42-yard pass from Plunkett to Randy “The Rabbit” Vataha (later known as Ahmad Rashad). The win gave Stanford its first sweep of USC and UCLA in 13 years. Stanford would go on win the Pac Eight, defeating Ohio State in the Rose Bowl, 27-17, to finish 9-3, ranked eighth. Quarterback Jim Plunkett won the Heisman trophy in 1970, besting Joe Theismann from Notre Dame and Archie Manning from Mississippi.
1981—No. 15 Nebraska 6, No. 19 Missouri 0
There had not been a scoreless tie involving a Big Eight team in 14 years, but the Cornhuskers and Tigers came close. Nebraska scored until the last series of the game, with quarterback Turner Gill engineering a drive which was culminated with a three yard score by fullback Phil Bates with 23 seconds left. Nebraska sacked Tiger quarterbacks ten times, and held Missouri to 85 yards rushing. Nebraska would make it to the Orange Bowl, but fell to national champion Clemson, 22-15, finishing the 1981 season 9-3, ranked 11th. Missouri wound up in the Tangerine Bowl, with a 19-17 win over Southern Miss earning the Tigers a final ranking of 19th.
1987— Alabama 41, No. 8 Tennessee 22
If it was the third weekend in October, it was time for the annual blood-feud between Alabama and Tennessee. The game, played in Birmingham, was the first-ever night game in the series, and the Crimson Tide dominated the top ten Volunteers. Running back Bobby Humphrey had 127 yards rushing and two touchdowns to lead Alabama back into the polls. The Crimson Tide would rise as far as 11th , but season-ending losses to Auburn and Michigan (in the Hall of Fame Bowl) left the 8-4 Crimson Tide out of the final rankings. Tennessee, meanwhile, would rebound to finish 14th after taking out Indiana, 27-22, in the Peach Bowl.
1998—No. 8 Texas A&M 17, No. 25 Texas Tech 10
In a battle between tailbacks, Aggie Dante Hall got the best of Red Raider Ricky Williams, as A&M defeated its hated rival. Texas A&M used the win as a springboard for its second consecutive Big 12 South title. In 1998, Texas A&M won its first conference championship, upsetting Kansas State, 36-33, before falling to Ohio State, 24-14, in the Sugar Bowl, to finish 11th. Texas Tech earned an Independence Bowl invitation, finishing 7-5 (and unranked) after a 35-18 loss to Mississippi.