College Football Bowl Videos: Finding Each Game's Classic, Part Two

Michigan quarterback Chad Henne (7) evades Nebraska's Jay Moore (44) during the 2005 MasterCard Alamo Bowl game game between the University of Michigan Wolverines and the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers, December 28, 2005, at the Alamodome, San Antonio

The biggest comeback in bowl history, Barry Sanders and Thurman Thomas, and a pair of controversial 2010 finishes highlight Part Two of the quest for the best game in each bowl's history.

Picking up where we left off: Jim McMahon completing his Hail Mary pass to finish BYU's amazing 21-point comeback in the final two and a half minutes of the 1980 Holiday Bowl. Here's Part Two of our best game in each bowl's history feature, from the Champs Sports Bowl through the Chick-fil-A Bowl:

Champs Sports Bowl (first played: 1990, this year: 22nd edition): This bowl evolved from Orange Bowl Junior to Citrus Bowl Junior in 2000, but none of the games quite had the strangeness of the 2009 contest between Miami and Wisconsin. Basically, a southern team got a taste of what things would feel like if bowl games were played up in the Rust Belt. With wintry conditions that sent the mercury to below 40 all over Florida, this game featured a Miami team that couldn't get warm enough while the Badgers were as comfortable as they were at home. With John Clay running all over shivering Hurricanes defenders, Wisconsin held on for a 20-14 victory.

Alamo Bowl (1993, 19th): The 2005 game, billed to settle things between 1997 national co-champions Michigan and Nebraska, almost had as dramatic an ending as 'The Play' in the 1982 Cal-Stanford game. After blowing a 11-point fourth-quarter lead, Michigan had one more play at the end of the game. A pass completion led to seven laterals, the last of which went back to Michigan's own 30-yard line. As Nebraska players and coaches ran onto the field, thinking the game was over, the Wolverines' Tyler Ecker streaked upfield and had an escort for perhaps one last lateral. But he was shoved out of bounds at the 15, as Nebraska held on for a 32-28 victory.

Armed Forces Bowl (2003, 9th): The inaugural game in 2003 remains the best in the history of a bowl played on the TCU campus. Two upstarts, which would later become bona-fide national powers, met for the first time. Boise State was playing in its first bowl game outside of its home stadium whereas TCU was hosting its first. The Horned Frogs jumped out to a 21-7 lead but the Broncos rallied to win 34-31. The teams have met four times in nine years, never with more than two losses - combined - coming into each game.

Pinstripe Bowl (2010, 2nd): This is only the second year of the youngest bowl game, but it would do well if it measures up to the inaugural edition in 2010. Syracuse and Kansas State played a highly-entertaining and offensive-minded game all the way to the end when it was decided by a controversial call. After K-State's Adrian Hilburn caught a touchdown pass with 1:13 left to cut the Syracuse lead to two, he was flagged for an unsportsmanlike penalty for saluting the crowd. Forced to go for two from the 18-yard line, the Wildcats failed as Syracuse held on for a 38-36 victory.

Music City Bowl (1998, 14th): It wasn't quite the Music City Miracle, but the 2010 game nevertheless caused an NCAA rule change because of its controversial finish. Trailing 20-17 with the clock winding down, North Carolina quarterback T.J. Yates spiked the ball with one second on the clock while Carolina had 17 players on the field. But since there was no 10-second runoff in college football at the time, UNC was allowed to attempt a game-tying field goal after a 5-yard penalty. Casey Barth made that and again in the second overtime to give the Tar Heels a 30-27 win over Tennessee.

Insight Bowl (1989, 23rd): Can a coach lose his job by losing a bowl game? Sure, just ask Minnesota's Glen Mason, after his team's epic collapse in the 2006 game. Mason's Gophers raced out to a 28-0 first-half lead and stretched it to 38-7 halfway through the third quarter ... that's when Mike Leach's high-powered Texas Tech offense struck back. Behind Graham Harrell's 445 passing yards, the Red Raiders scored four touchdowns and when Alex Trlica made a 52-yard field goal at the end of regulation, Tech had stunned Minnesota by tying the score at 38-38. After Tech finished off its 44-41 win in OT, Mason was promptly fired and Minnesota has gone through two more coaches, and still no bowl victories.

Meineke Car Care Bowl (2006, 6th): OK, this is not the Belk Bowl that's held in Charlotte, even though it used to be the Meineke Car Care Bowl. It's the Texas Bowl, or the Houston Bowl ... er, whatever, but it's really the Blowout Bowl. Four of the five games were decided by at least 22 points, so the 2007 game, which was a 20-13 TCU win over Houston, qualifies as a "classic" by default.

Sun Bowl (1934, 78th): Tied with the Orange and Sugar as the second oldest bowl game behind the Rose, the Sun Bowl just doesn't quite have the history of the other games, partly because of the often-lackluster matchups. But in 1987, it had a West Virginia team that went on to play for the national championship the following season, and a high-powered Oklahoma State team with a running back tandem of Barry Sanders and Thurman Thomas (not to mention its manly quarterback Mike Gundy). The see-saw battle on a rare snowy day in El Paso was not decided until WVU's 2-point conversion attempt was stuffed in the final minute by Oklahoma State to preserve its 35-33 victory.

Liberty Bowl (1959, 53rd): While it has featured some of the most high-profiled teams in its history, the Liberty Bowl in 2004 had a truly memorable game that lived up to its billing. Undefeated Boise State and 10-1 Louisville, both ranked in the top 10, engaged in a high-scoring shootout that featured seven lead changes. The Broncos took advantage of four Louisville turnovers and once took a 13-point lead in the second half, but the Michael Bush-led Louisville running game proved too much in a 44-40 Cardinals victory.

Fight Hunger Bowl (2002, 10th): The most wacky part of this bowl game is that because it's played on a baseball field, both teams have to share the same sideline due to insufficient space. That was on display in its inaugural game of 2002, when Air Force faced Virginia Tech. It was a tight affair throughout, but the Hokies preserved a 17-10 victory when Falcons quarterback Chance Harridge was stopped short of the goal line on the game's final play.

Chick-fil-A Bowl (1968, 44th): Despite its current fried chicken name, it's still the Peach Bowl, played in a city where every street has "peach" in its name. The best game in its history just happens to be the first year the fast food franchise began its title sponsorship, 1998. After Virginia took a 21-0 early lead, Georgia stormed back and had a 35-27 advantage in the waning moments. UVa scored a touchdown with 1:34 left but failed on its two-point conversion attempt. The Cavaliers would recover the onside kick and had a 48-yard field goal to win the game, but Todd Braverman's attempt sailed just left, as Georgia escaped with a 35-33 victory.

Next up: Ticket City Bowl through the BCS Championship Game.

Samuel Chi is the proprietor of BCSGuru.com and managing editor of RealClearSports. Sam's college football and BCS analysis, exclusively for SB Nation, will appear twice weekly throughout the season. Follow him on Twitter at BCSGuru.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.