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Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Clip Reel: 1997 in College Football

"Sure, that's one way of looking at it."

What is "Clip Reel?"

Every year at this time—rightfully so, in many respects—the grousing about the BCS reaches a new fever pitch. We decided to take a look back at 1997 in college football. While it was a glorious season (a primarily defensive player won the Heisman, it was Peyton Manning's final year at Tennessee, the name "Ryan Leaf" didn't mean "bust," etc), it also resulted in a split national title between Michigan and Nebraska, ultimately intensifying the debate leading to the creation of the BCS. So thank you, Mr. Woodson and others. We'll wander back in time with ya now.


MICHIGAN IN 1997 Here's highlights from the ND game that year, which Michigan won by 7. The MSU game that year. Nice Superman-style INT by Woodson in that game. Here they are beating Wisconsin. Oddly, they only beat Iowa by four points that year. However, they absolutely destroyed Penn State, 34-8, that season. In "The Game," they beat OSU by six. Here's more highlights from that game, focusing mostly on Charles Woodson. And here's your Rose Bowl 1998 clips: Michigan 21, Washington State 16. Channel 7 in Detroit did a five-part recap of the 1997 season called, obviously, "Dream Season." This is Part 1. You can find the other 4 parts on the sidebar. Interesting comparison between the 1997 and 2003 Wolverine teams.

NEBRASKA IN 1997 One tribute video to the '97 Huskers. And one more. Here's a third. For our money, "The Flea Kicker" vs. Missouri is still one of college football's seminal plays. Here's the 1997 Cornhuskers Tunnel Walk video. Good look at Nebraska's amazing defenses under Osborne. Not all '97, but features '97 video. Nice Bobby Newcombe punt return vs. Iowa State that year. The Nebraska vs. Tennessee Orange Bowl: Part 1. Here's Part 2. A video that perhaps rightfully asked, "What happened to this program?" (It features Osborne's final speech as head coach.)

"THE GREATEST GAME EVER PLAYED AT THE SWAMP" When discussing 1997, ya gotta throw this clip in there somewhere, right?

SO WHO WOULD HAVE WON BETWEEN MICHIGAN AND NEBRASKA? Well, according to this SportsGamerForum board, Michigan would have won a head-to-head meeting 10-3 as played out on a video game. This board seems to disagree, arguing Nebraska was the better squad.