Thursday, March 28, 2013
A few more SEC upsets to remember
By Chris Low
OK, I know I didn’t cover all of the memorable SEC upsets from the last 30 to 35 years in my earlier post.
And, yes, I’ve already heard from some of you about those that weren’t included.
So as promised -- and hoping that there are a few more compelling upsets to come in the NCAA tournament -- below are several more upsets involving SEC teams that fans have either tried to keep alive all these years or do their best to forget.
I’ve also included non-conference games and bowl games in this batch, and they’re listed chronologically.
Texas A&M 29, Alabama 24 (2012): The Aggies were a 13-point underdog on the road against the No. 1 Crimson Tide, and Johnny Football delivered the performance that won him the Heisman Trophy.
South Carolina 35, Alabama 21 (2010): The No. 1 Crimson Tide had their 19-game winning streak snapped before a raucous crowd at Williams-Brice Stadium. Steve Spurrier said afterward that his Gamecocks played close to perfection on offense. Naturally, South Carolina lost the next week at Kentucky.
Jacksonville State 49, Ole Miss 48, 2 OTs (2010): Ole Miss, coming off a nine-win season, opened the 2010 season by blowing a 21-point halftime lead and losing at home to the FCS Gamecocks.
Vanderbilt 17, South Carolina 6 (2007): The Gamecocks debuted at No. 6 that week in the first BCS standings, but were stunned at home by the Commodores. It was one of two SEC wins that season for Vanderbilt.
Kentucky 43, LSU 37, 3 OTs (2007): Braxton Kelly's stop of Charles Scott on fourth-and-2 in the third overtime preserved Kentucky's biggest win in decades and sent the No. 1 Tigers packing even though they rebounded to win the national title that season.
Auburn 20, Florida 17 (2007): Wes Byrum kicked a 43-yard field goal as time expired to end an 11-game winning streak for the defending national champion Gators and hand Urban Meyer his first loss in the Swamp.
Vanderbilt 24, Georgia 22 (2006): Bryant Hahnfeldt kicked a 33-yard field goal with seven seconds left to cap a game-winning 65-yard drive for the Commodores, whose only other wins that season were over Duke, Tennessee State and Temple.
Mississippi State 38, Florida 31 (2004): It’s an upset Ron Zook remembers all too well. It cost him his job.
Auburn 23, Florida 20 (2001): The No. 1 Gators were a three-touchdown favorite and had won their first five games by a 244-45 margin. The unranked Tigers, though, sent Jordan-Hare Stadium into a frenzy when Damon Duval booted the game-winning 44-yard field goal with 10 seconds to play.
Mississippi State 47, Florida 35 (2000): The No. 3 Gators had their 72-game winning streak against unranked teams snapped in Starkville as the Bulldogs rolled up 351 yards on the ground.
Arkansas 28, Tennessee 24 (1999): The Vols were No. 3 and pointing toward a run at a second straight national title, but Clint Stoerner and the Hogs exacted revenge from the heartbreaking loss the year before in Knoxville when Stoerner stumbled and fumbled. When it was over, the Hogs’ fans tore down the goalposts and paraded them up and down Dickson Street.
Georgia 20, Auburn 16 (1986): It was a bitter home loss for the No. 8 Tigers and cost them a share of the SEC championship. It’s a game that’s probably best remembered for the water cannons at Jordan-Hare Stadium being turned onto the Georgia fans while they celebrated on the field after the game.
Miami (Ohio) 21, LSU 12 (1986): The eventual SEC-champion and Sugar Bowl-bound Tigers opened the season by taking down No. 7 Texas A&M and rose to No. 8 in the polls. The very next week, they were ambushed at home by Miami (Ohio).
Tennessee 38, Auburn 20 (1985): The Vols knocked eventual Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson out of the game and blistered the No. 1 Tigers in Knoxville behind four touchdown passes from Tony Robinson.
Georgia 10, Texas 9 (1984): The Bulldogs capped the 1983 season by upsetting No. 2 Texas in the Cotton Bowl and knocking the previously unbeaten Longhorns out of the national title picture. Vince Dooley said that Texas defense was one of the best he’s ever seen.
Tulane 31, LSU 28 (1982): It’s the last time Tulane has beaten LSU, which was ranked No. 7 entering the game and would go on to play in the Orange Bowl that season.
Georgia Tech 24, Alabama 21 (1981): This ranks right up there with some of the more improbable upsets in history involving SEC teams. Alabama was ranked No. 2, but managed to lose in Birmingham to a Georgia Tech team that finished 1-10 that season -- the lone win coming over the Tide.