Most improbable bowl game comebacks of the last 10 seasons
Louis Ojeda Jr.
2013 New Mexico Bowl: Colorado State 48, Washington State 45
Washington State QB Connor Halliday threw his sixth touchdown pass with 9:35 left in the fourth quarter to put the Cougars up 45-30. Then everything fell apart. Colorado State tied it at 45 with less than a minute to play, and Wazzu fumbled the ensuing kickoff return. The Rams kicked the game-winning field goal with no time left.
Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports
2008 Gator Bowl: Texas Tech 31, Virginia 28
Texas Tech's high-powered offense was held to just 14 points by Virginia through three and a half quarters. Red Raiders QB Graham Harrell's touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree with 3:31 left made it a one-score deficit, but the game still appeared to be out of reach. The Cavaliers fumbled on their next possession, allowing Tech to tie it at 28 one play later. The Red Raiders got the ball back again and won it in the final seconds with a 41-yard field goal.
Getty ImagesSam Greenwood
2012 New Mexico Bowl: Arizona 49, Nevada 48
Arizona trailed 45-28 entering the fourth quarter, but made a stunning comeback in the final minutes. Nevada kicked a field goal to go up 48-35 with 1:48 left. The Wildcats marched down the field to cut it to 7 with 42 seconds remaining. After a successful onside kick, Arizona found the end zone again with 19 seconds left and the extra point gave the Wildcats a one-point win.
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2013 Chick-Fil-A Bowl: Texas A&M 52, Duke 48
Johnny Manziel capped his Texas A&M career with one more wild comeback. The Aggies were behind 38-17 at halftime before Johnny Football came alive. After cutting the deficit to three with 5:44 remaining, the Texas A&M defense stepped up. The Aggies returned an interception 55 yards for the go-ahead touchdown and sealed a thrilling 52-48 win.
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY SportsDale Zanine
2015 Cotton Bowl: Michigan State 42, Baylor 41
Baylor looked determined to prove it belonged in the College Football Playoff as they dominated Michigan State through three quarters with a 41-21 lead. Then the Bears collapsed. The Spartans made a furious rally and blocked a field goal attempt late that would have given Baylor a two-score lead. Michigan State QB Connor Cook led his team down the field and into the end zone with 17 seconds remaining, and the extra point gave them a one-point lead. The Spartan defense sealed the win with an interception in the final seconds.
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY SportsTim Heitman
2015 Armed Forces Bowl: Houston 35, Pittsburgh 34
Houston had nothing going right for most of the game. The Cougars were getting embarrassed by Pitt, down 31-6 early in the fourth quarter. But in the final four minutes, Houston recovered two onside kicks, scored three touchdowns and made a two-point conversion for a 35-34 win.
Ray Carlin-USA TODAY SportsRaymond Carlin III
2006 Rose Bowl/BCS National Championship Game: Texas 41, USC 38
Vince Young had been known for leading big comebacks, but it was a tall order when USC took a 38-26 lead with 6:42 remaining in the national championship game. After leading the Longhorns to a quick touchdown with 4:03 left, the Texas defense stopped the Trojans on a crucial fourth down with just over two minutes left. Young calmly marched his team back down the field and raced into the end zone on fourth-and-5 to give Texas a 39-38 lead with 19 seconds left. A two-point conversion gave them a three-point win. The shocking comeback snapped USC's 34-game winning streak.
2007 Fiesta Bowl: Boise State 43, Oklahoma 42, OT
Nobody will ever forget Boise State's miracle comeback in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl. Oklahoma looked to have sealed a win with a 34-yard interception return for a touchdown to go up 35-28 with 1:02 left in the fourth quarter. On fourth-and-18, Boise State's hook-and-ladder play went for a 35-yard game-tying touchdown. The Broncos won it in overtime with a stunning Statue of Liberty two-point conversion.
2006 Insight Bowl: Texas Tech 44, Minnesota 41, OT
Texas Tech's Air Raid offense didn't show up in the first half, falling behind 35-7. If that didn't make you think it was over, Minnesota opened the second half with a seven-minute drive that resulted in a field goal to go up by 31. But Graham Harrell and the Red Raiders stormed back and tied it at the end of regulation with a 52-yard field goal. They completed the comeback with a touchdown in overtime to win it 44-41. The 31-point rally is the largest comeback in bowl history.
2016 Alamo Bowl: TCU 47, Oregon 41, 3OT
Nothing went right for TCU in the first half of the 2016 Alamo Bowl. The Horned Frogs were already without their star quarterback Trevone Boykin and All-American wide receiver Josh Doctson heading into the game. Oregon made it look easy early, rolling to a 31-0 halftime lead. But after quarterback Vernon Adams, Jr. was knocked out of the game, the Ducks offense couldn't do anything. TCU stormed back to tie it in regulation, and capped the stunning comeback with a defensive stop on fourth down in a third overtime. The rally ties Texas Tech's 2006 Insight Bowl thriller as the largest comeback in bowl history.