The Top 100 Games Of The 2011 College Football Season, Numbers 40 Through 21

BATON ROUGE, LA - NOVEMBER 25: Kick returner Tyrann Mathieu #7 of the LSU Tigers returns a punt 92-yards for a second quarter touchdown against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Tiger Stadium on November 25, 2011 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

40. LSU 9, Alabama 6 (Nov. 5). It sure seemed significant at the time, didn't it?

39. Clemson 38, Auburn 24 (Sept. 17). This was back when Auburn was still seen as solid and nobody knew Clemson was about to do what they did. They gained 600 yards, erased a 14-0 deficit, and introduced the world to Sammy Watkins.

38. Nebraska 34, Ohio State 27 (Oct. 8). It would have been higher if Nebraska had come back against a healthy Braxton Miller, but still, this one was dramatic.

37. Arizona State 37, Missouri 30 (Sept. 9). Some early-season Joe Tessitore magic. Missouri erases a 14-point, fourth-quarter deficit but misses the game-winning field goal at the buzzer and loses in overtime in front of a hopping Sun Devil Stadium.

36. SEC Championship: LSU 42, Georgia 10 (Dec. 3). Sometimes it can be really exciting when one team flips the switch and erases its opponent from existence.

35. Sun Bowl: Utah 30, Georgia Tech 27 (Dec. 31). Georgia Tech dominated a large portion of the game and took a 24-10 lead into the game's final seven minutes. And if they had a field goal kicker, they'd have won. But they didn't.

34. Oklahoma State 44, Oklahoma 10 (Dec. 3). The Cowboys came into this game with, in my mind, virtually no chance of catching Alabama for the No. 2 spot in the BCS rankings. But then they so viciously vaporized the Sooners that they very nearly made up the ground.

33. Michigan 40, Ohio State 34 (Nov. 26). Two solid defenses get torched. Braxton Miller (235 passing yards, 100 rushing yards) almost -- almost -- outplays Denard Robinson (167 passing yards, 170 rushing yards).

32. Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Ohio 24, Utah State 23 (Dec. 17). Ohio leads for only 13 seconds all game, but LaVon Brazill's heroics and Tyler Tettleton's one-yard run gives the Bobcats their first ever bowl win.

31. Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State 41, Stanford 38 (Jan. 2). The bowl season was plagued by shaky place-kicking, but even failure can be exciting. All of this game's stars -- Andrew Luck, Brandon Weeden, Justin Blackmon -- came up with brilliant plays, and after a very shaky first quarter, the Cowboys stormed back. The Cowboys took their first lead on Quinn Sharp's game-winning 22-yard field goal in overtime after Stanford kicker Jordan Williamson missed field goals, both at the end of regulation and in overtime.

Oh, and this also happened:

30. Alabama 38, Florida 10 (Oct. 1). The Swamp is rocking, Andre Debose catches an early bomb ... and then the Tide systematically, clinically and brutally take apart and emasculate the Gators. Cruelty is beautiful in its own way.

29. Iowa 31, Pittsburgh 27 (Sept. 17). Pitt takes a 27-10 lead with 12 minutes remaining ... and Iowa scores 21 unanswered to win after half of the Kinnick Stadium crowd heads for the exits.

28. Boise State 35, Georgia 21 (Sept. 3). Kellen Moore and the Broncos play nearly perfect offense for three quarters against a Dawg defense that turned out to be rather stout.

27. Alamo Bowl: Baylor 67, Washington 56 (Dec. 29). You probably figured this one would be higher, what with my love of MACtion and all, but I prefer when the defense forces the offense to at least try. This game featured a smidge too much "ball-carrier running free with nobody else on the TV screen" for my liking. And forcing Chris Spielman to call this game was just cruel. Still, Robert Griffin III's college career wrapped exactly as it should have: with a ridiculous shootout.

26. Outback Bowl: Michigan State 33, Georgia 30 (Jan. 2). Michigan State's offense surges after a feckless first half, and Mark Richt learns that it probably isn't good to play for a 42-yarder with a kicker hasn't been very good all year.

25. LSU 40, Oregon 27 (Sept. 3). World, meet Tyrann Mathieu. Tyrann Mathieu, meet world. You two are going to get along just fine.

24. Arkansas 42, Texas A&M 38 (Oct. 1). A&M's second-half collapses were still a bit of a novelty back when Arkansas overcame a 35-17 halftime deficit to steal a four-point win at Jerry World.

23. N.C. State 56, Maryland 41 (Nov. 26). The season's two greatest comebacks actually had nothing to do with Texas A&M. N.C. State trailed 41-14 with 10:51 remaining in the third quarter, then proceeded to score six touchdowns in 21 minutes to not only come back, but win by double digits. At halftime of their 12th game, it looked like Tom O'Brien's time in Raleigh was done. Six quarters of football later (the final two versus Maryland, and the four from the Belk Bowl), they actually somehow have some momentum and positivity heading into 2012.

22. Houston 35, Louisiana Tech 34 (Sept. 17). Held completely in check for two and a half quarters by what turned out to be a solid Louisiana Tech defense, Houston trailed 34-7 with 20 minutes remaining. And then Case Keenum went to work.

21. LSU 41, Arkansas 17 (Nov. 25). Arkansas surged to an early 14-0 lead, and then Tyrann Mathieu decided he wanted to make a run at the Heisman.

Intro | Games 100-71 | Games 70-41 | Games 40-21 | Games 20-11 | Games 10-1

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