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This Week in College Football History: Nov. 18-24
This Week in College Football History takes a look back at some of college football's landmark moments over the last 145 years.
Published: 11/15/2013 4:30:00 PM
(Pictured: On Nov. 23 in 1973, the stout Sooner defense anchored by the three Selmon brothers, DeweyLucious and Hall of Famer Lee Roy Selmon, helped No. 3 Oklahoma shut out No. 10 Nebraska.) 

As part of an ongoing series throughout the fall, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame posts This Week in College Football History, which takes a look back at some of college football's landmark moments over the last 145 years. If you choose to use this content in whole or in part, as a courtesy, please credit The National Football Foundation and use the NFF logo, which is available upon request.


Nov. 23, 1973
No. 3 Oklahoma def. No. 10 Nebraska, 27-0
Norman, Okla.

No. 3 Oklahoma broke No. 10 Nebraska’s 58-game scoring streaking, handing the Cornhuskers their first shutout since 1968 (a 47-0 loss to OU), when the Big Eight rivals met in 1973. The stout Sooner defense was anchored by the three Selmon brothers, Dewey, Lucious and Hall of Famer Lee Roy Selmon. Their efforts helped limit Nebraska to just one trip into OU territory, which resulted in a Sooner fumble recovery. Altogether, Oklahoma forced five turnovers and held the Cornhuskers to 74 yards rushing. Oklahoma quarterback Steve Davis rushed for 114 yards and three scores, including a 47-yard TD run. Hall of Famer Joe Washington (Oklahoma) had 107 yards rushing, and 2013 Hall of Fame inductee Rod Shoate also contributed to OU’s shutdown defense. Each team was headed by a first-year Hall of Fame coach: Tom Osborne (Nebraska) and Barry Switzer (Oklahoma).


Nov. 18, 1989
No. 16 Virginia def. Maryland, 48-21
College Park, Md.

A dominating performance by Virginia quarterback Shawn Moore against Maryland in 1989 gave the Cavaliers their first 10-win season in program history. Moore accounted for five Virginia touchdowns, three through the air and two on the ground. He passed 161 yards and rushed for a career-high 121 yards on 18 carries. Tailback Marcus Wilson also contributed to the offensive performance, gaining 95 yards rushing and scoring two touchdowns. The victory helped Virginia and Hall of Fame coach George Welsh (Navy, Virginia) to claim a share of the conference title, the school’s first ACC football crown.

Nov. 19, 1966
No. 1 Notre Dame ties No. 2 Michigan State, 10-10
East Lansing, Mich.

Dubbed the "Game of the Century" at the time, Hall of Fame coaches Ara Parseghian (Notre Dame) and Duffy Daugherty (Michigan State) led their teams to a 10-10 tie in a game featuring five Hall of Fame players. The Fighting Irish were down 7-0 in the second quarter when Hall of Fame linebacker and 1966 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Jim Lynch intercepted a Spartans pass, but he lost the ball on a hit by Michigan State running back Clinton Jones. Michigan State recovered and converted a 47-yard field goal to take a 10-0 lead. With the Spartans ahead 10-7 in the third quarter, Michigan State recovered a Fighting Irish fumble, which was nullified because Hall of Famer Bubba Smith (Michigan State) had jumped into the neutral zone before the snap. Notre Dame tied the game on the first play of the fourth quarter with a 28-yard field goal, and the game would end in a knotted tie as neither team took many chances the rest of the game. Both teams ended the year with a 9-0-1 record. The AP placed Notre Dame at No. 1 in its final poll, and the NFF awarded both schools a share of the MacArthur Bowl, marking the first time in history the NFF’s national championship trophy had been awarded to two schools.

Nov. 20, 1982
California def. Stanford, 25-20
Berkley, Calif.

“The Play” will stand in football lore as one of the most bizarre and controversial endings in college football history. It seemed all over after Stanford’s Mark Harmon nailed a 35-yard field goal with four seconds remaining for a 20-19 Cardinal lead. Cal, desperate to score with time expiring, returned a kickoff, lateralling the ball five times through the Stanford defense to keep the play alive. The Stanford Band, assuming the Cardinal had won the game, had already stormed the field in celebration. The chaos created an opportunity for Cal player Kevin Moen to take the final lateral, navigate through the morass of musicians and find the end zone for a dramatic 25-20 win. Following the confusion, officials ruled “The Play” a touchdown.

Nov. 21, 1959
Pittsburgh def. No. 7 Penn State, 22-7

Pitt’s backfield, dubbed the “C Boys” by publicist and 2011 FWAA Bert McGrane Award winner Beano Cook, led the Panthers to a 22-7 upset over Hall of Fame coach Rip Engle’s Nittany Lions. Consisting of halfbacks Bob Clemens and Fred Cox and fullback Jim Cunningham, the “C Boys” rushed for 287 yards and scored two touchdowns in just their second game as a starting unit. After Pitt’s defense trapped Hall of Fame quarterback Richie Lucas (Penn State) for a safety, the Panthers scored a touchdown in nine plays on an Ivan Toncic quarterback keeper. Later, Clemens scored the first “C Boys” touchdown with a 34-yard run, and Cox scored the second, breaking off an 86-yard touchdown run that clinched the upset.

Nov. 22, 2003
No. 11 Georgia def. Kentucky, 30-10
Athens, Ga.

Kicker Billy Bennett connected on three field goals to become the SEC’s leader in career scoring and field goals in a 30-10 win over Kentucky. 2004 NFF National Scholar-Athlete David Greene threw for 289 yards while three different running backs added touchdowns as the Bulldogs kept their SEC Championship hopes alive. Kentucky ran a fake field goal and a fake punt in the game, saving the two drives that would result in all of their points. Bennett’s record 409 career points would stand for eight seasons until it was broken by fellow Georgia alum Blair Walsh, though his 87 career field goals still remain a record. Although Georgia went on to lose the SEC Championship game to LSU, they would celebrate a win over Purdue in the Capital One Bowl.

Nov. 24, 2007
No. 3 Missouri def. No. 2 Kansas, 36-28
Arrowhead Stadium (Kansas City, Mo.)

No. 2 Kansas and No. 3 Missouri squared off at Arrowhead Stadium Thanksgiving weekend for the annual Border War, closing out the 2007 regular season.  With No. 1 LSU falling in triple overtime to Arkansas the night before, the winner of the MU/KU matchup would be the nation’s new top-team and would face Oklahoma the following weekend in the Big 12 Championship for a spot in the BCS National Championship. Missouri opened a 21-point lead before Kansas got on the board midway through the third quarter. The Jayhawks chipped away at the deficit, closing the gap to six after scoring a touchdown with 2:03 left to play. The Tigers were unable to do anything on the ensuing drive, putting the ball back in Kansas’ hands. Missouri’s defense stood its ground, and the Tigers sacked Jayhawk quarterback and 2008 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Todd Reesing for a safety with 12 seconds left to secure the win. Fellow NFF National-Scholar Athlete Chase Daniel (Missouri) went 40-49 passing for 361 yards and three touchdowns on the day, and Missouri claimed the top spot in the AP Poll for the first time since 1960.

About The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame
Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl "Red" Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include the College Football Hall of Fame, the NFF Scholar-Athlete Awards presented by Fidelity Investments, Play It Smart, the NFF Hampshire Honor Society, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Alumni Association, and scholarships of more than $1.3 million for college and high school scholar-athletes. The NFF presents the MacArthur Bowl, the William V. Campbell Trophy endowed by HealthSouth, and releases the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) Standings. NFF corporate partners include the Allstate Sugar Bowl, the BCS, Fidelity Investments, Herff Jones, Liberty Mutual Insurance, NCAA Football, and Under Armour. For more information, please visit

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