Miami Hurricanes: The Millennium’s First Football Dynasty

Miami came into the 2000s on a mission, having recovered from the sanctions that plagued them in the second half of the 1990s, they were ready to rumble. In 2000 they would go 11-1, with their only loss a 34-29 crusher in a blisteringly loud Husky Stadium. They came back the next year on a mission and put together one of the most dominant seasons in the history of college football, averaging over 40 points score and under 10 allowed, doing this with five top-15 teams on their schedule. The national championship winning team would eventually have a silly 38 players drafted in the NFL, including 17 first-rounders. Ed Reed, Andre Johnson, Clinton Portis, Jonathan Vilma and Jeremy Shockey led the way, with underclassmen Frank Gore, Sean Taylor, Antrel Rolle and Kellen Winslow Jr. seeing plenty of PT as well. The Hurricanes almost repeated the next year if it hadn’t been for a questionable pass interference call favoring Ohio State. Fox Sports puts together a fitting tribute the century’s first dynasty.

Miami Hurricanes’ pursuit of perfection in 2001: an oral history, 9.17.14



Griese and Woodson Carry Wolverines to ’97 National Title

The Michigan Wolverines opened the 1997 season with a revenge whipping of #14 Colorado, 27-3, and three weeks later they sounded a cleghorn by marching into Happy Valley and destroying #2 Penn State, 34-8. This team was on their way, and it would be led by their defense, and specifically Heisman Trophy winner Charles Woodson. The win over the Nittany Lions pushed Michigan to #1, where they would stay until The Game, the annual showdown with arch rivals Ohio State. Woodson would nail down the Heisman with a game for the ages, including a 78-yard punt return for a touchdown, an end zone interception, and a key 37-yard catch into the red zone that set up another TD. Images of Woodson with roses between his teeth would become iconic. Michigan would squeak past Washington State and Ryan Leaf to end the year undefeated. The Detroit Free Press relives a magical season.

Michigan football’s 1997 national championship: An oral history, 5.4.17

Vince Young Upends the USC Dynasty and Becomes a Longhorn Legend

It was the greatest college bowl game ever: Vince Young and the Longhorns going back and forth with the pinnacle of the USC dynasty, led by Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart. Young’s final streaking run to the house to win it all remains one of the most replayed plays in college football history. CBS goes all out with an engrossing oral history of the 2006 BCS championship.

USC-Texas: An oral history, 1.4.16

The Day After Bo Died: #1 Ohio State vs. #2 Michigan

The 2006 college football regular season seemed like one long prelude to the annual Ohio State-Michigan rivalry game. Ohio State was top ranked for much of the year and a dominant Michigan team soared up the polls to set up a classic showdown. What no one could possibly see coming, however, was Michigan legend Bo Schembechler, a larger-than-life figure for those born and raised in the state, passing away of a heart attack the day before the game. The Buckeyes led the game much of the way, but an emotional Michigan team kept making runs, ultimately falling 42-39. The Detroit Free Press does a tremendous job of recounting those remarkable days in that remarkable season.

Michigan vs. Ohio State 2006: An oral history, 11.21.16

The Drama-Filled Creation of the Big 12 Conference

The rise in popularity of college football has led to conference realignments to maximize scope and monetary value. The first major wave hit in 1996 when the Big 8 and Southwestern Conference (made up almost entirely of schools from Texas) dissolved and most members migrated to the new Big 12, now known as one of the “Power 5” conferences. Sports Illustrated recaps the boardroom drama as schools maneuvered for the best deal, with some left scrambling for a seat when the music stopped.

The oral history of the birth of the Big 12, 8.16.2016

The Rise of Johnny Football

This 2012 article provides a history of Johnny Manziel’s football career as his legend grew in Texas as a prep star and then as a freshman at Texas A & M. Manziel became the first freshman to win the Heisman and later was selected in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Manziel’s pro career has been a disaster thus far due to recurring off-the-field problems.

The Oral History of Johnny Football, 12.10.12