This Week In College Football History


DALLAS—As part of an on-going series throughout the fall, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame posts in advance This Week in College Football History, which takes a look back at some of college football’s landmark moments over the last 139 years. During the season, many of these events are featured in a changing exhibit at the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind.


Aug. 26, 1995: In the first on-campus rendition of the Pigskin Classic in Ann Arbor, Mich., and Lloyd Carr’s coaching debut for the Wolverines, Michigan makes its then-biggest comeback in school history from a 17-0 deficit in the fourth quarter to outlast Virginia 18-17. Wolverines’ QB Scott Dreisbach sparked the come-from-behind thriller with 27-for-52 passing, 372 yards and two touchdowns. He drove Michigan 80 yards for the winning TD in the final 2:35 to cap the one-point verdict.

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Aug. 27, 1986: Alabama edges Ohio State 16-10 in the annual Kickoff Classic at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, N.J. The Crimson Tide rallies from a 10-6 deficit on a three-yard pass from future ‘Bama head coach and then-QB Mike Shula to wideout Albert Bell and a 28-yard field goal by Van Tiffin.

Aug. 28, 1999: NC State uses three blocked punts to upend No. 17 Texas 23-20 in Austin. Texas’ defense holds the Wolfpack to 172 yards, but the opportunistic NCSU special teams pulled out the triumph in the final quarter. The Wolfpack’s Eric Leak blocked one punt to cause a safety and returned the third block of the game (by teammate Terrence Holt) 48 yards for the winning TD with 3:22 left in the contest.

Aug. 29, 1992: Texas A&M spoils the return of Stanford coach Bill Walsh with a 10-7 upset in the Pigskin Classic in Anaheim, Calif. Coach R.C. Slocum’s Aggies get the three-point win as PK Terry Venetoulias hits a 39-yard field goal with 4:27 left in the game. The Aggies roll to a perfect regular season while Stanford shares the ’92 Pacific-10 Conference title.

Aug. 30, 2003: Southern California uses its “Wild Bunch II” defense to blank Auburn 23-0 in Auburn, Ala., after the Tigers were selected by three preseason publications as the no. 1 team nationally. It is a complete domination for the Trojans as the Wild Bunch limits the Tigers’ top two tailbacks, “Cadillac” Williams and Ronnie Brown, to a net of 68 yards on 20 rushing attempts.

Aug. 31, 2002: Duke ends a 23-game losing streak by sprinting to a 20-0 advantage in the opening 30 minutes and then staving off East Carolina 23-20. Duke FB Alex Wade leads the way with 24 carries for 109 yards.

Sept. 1, 1984: BYU upsets No. 3 Pittsburgh 20-14 behind a bend-not-break defense and possession passing by QB Robbie Bosco (25-for-43 for 325 yards). Bosco hits WR Adam Haysbert with a 50-yard winning TD toss with 1:37 left in the game, and the Cougars stop a final Panthers’ surge on the BYU 29-yard line in the final seconds.

Sept. 2, 1995: Called “one of the biggest upsets in college football history,” Northwestern outlasts Notre Dame 17-15 as the Wildcats begin their trek to the 1996 Rose Bowl. Northwestern scores early after a Fighting Irish turnover, and TB Darnell Autry (33 carries, 160 yards) was a one-man “ball control” machine as the Wildcats maintained ample possession time. Notre Dame missed on a two-point conversion after cutting the margin to the final 17-15 tally with 6:15 left in the final period.

Sept. 3, 1994: Tennessee has to resort to three reserve quarterbacks after starter Jerry Colquitt injured his knee in the first quarter of a 25-23 loss at UCLA. One of the reserves making his college debut is freshman Peyton Manning, a future consensus All-America and NFF Draddy Award winner. Future Major League Baseball star Todd Helton emerges in the fourth quarter to lead an exciting run by the Vols at an 18-0 deficit, but Bruins TB Daron Washington (30-yard clinching TD run) and UCLA prevail by two points.