Top 40 of the Past 40 – No. 34

Previously posted:

As always, I look forward to your comments and suggestions …

Top 40 Favorite Games … No. 34

October 2, 2010 – Colorado 29, Georgia 27 – Late fumble recovery preserves victory

From the Game Story in the CU at the Game Archives …

With less than two minutes to play in their game against Colorado at Folsom Field, the Georgia Bulldogs were positioned for a game-winning field goal. Instead, Colorado senior linebacker B.J. Beatty forced a fumble by Bulldog running back Caleb King at the Buff 30 yard line. Fellow linebacker Jon Major fell on the ball, preserving a 29-27 victory for Colorado.

In a game in which both teams fostered – and then lost – two score leads, it was only fitting that the 52,855 on hand be treated to an unexpected ending.

Colorado was led onto the field by the 1990 national championship team. Over 80 players on coaches were on hand for the weekend to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Colorado’s first national championship in football.

Perhaps inspired by the presence of the title team, the 2010 Buffs started the game better than they had any game in the young season. Colorado took the opening kickoff and smartly marched 80 yards in 13 plays. Brian Lockridge got most of the 11 carries on the drive, but it was an eight yard scramble on third-and-six at the Colorado 24 yard line by quarterback Tyler Hansen which set the tone for the drive. Ten plays later, on second-and-goal, Hansen hit utility back Matt Bahr for a four yard touchdown and a 7-0 Buff lead.

… Georgia took over with 3:37 to play. The ball was placed at the Bulldog 35 yard line. There was plenty of time left, with one of the best kickers in the nation, Blair Walsh, ready to give Georgia a one-point victory.

The Georgia offense needed only four plays to gain three first downs, quickly moving the ball to the Colorado 27-yard line. Faced with the likelihood that the Bulldogs would simply run the clock down to a few seconds before attempting a field goal, Dan Hawkins called the first of his three time outs.

1:59 remained.

On the first play after the time out, Colorado linebacker B.J. Beatty blitzed. Beatty got to quarterback Aaron Murray just as Murray was handing the ball off to Caleb King. The connection between quarterback and running back failed, with the ball falling to the Folsom Field turf. Sophomore linebacker Jon Major fell on the ball …

… and bedlam ensued.

There were over 6,000 Georgia fans in attendance at the game, but they could only sit in stunned silence as the 46,000 or so Colorado fans screamed with delight. Georgia had only one time out remaining, so the Buffs were able to run out the clock without incident.

Final Score: Colorado 29, Georgia 27

“We knew they were going to try and run the ball and milk the clock and kick a field goal,” said B.J. Beatty of the game’s most important play. “I knew I had the opportunity to come off the edge and maybe disrupt their handoff … I was thinking, ‘If I could get off the ball fast enough, I can get to that exchange and force it out’ … I saw it pop out and all I could think about was holding that running back so he can’t get it.”

There was not much for the Bulldogs, or their coach, Mark Richt, to say. “That’s as basic of a play as we’ve got,” said Richt, whose team fell for the fourth consecutive time for the first time since (ironically enough) 1990. “You say, ‘What’s our number one running play?’, and that was it.” Quarterback Aaron Murray accepted the blame. “I don’t know where the guy came from,” said Murray of Beatty. “I handed the ball off, and it just came out. That’s pretty much how it happened. You can’t blame Caleb King for that. It just happens sometimes.”

Continue reading story here

Here is a link to the YouTube presentation of the game …

Top 40 Favorite Players … No. 34

Jeff Campbell – WR/KR – 1986-89

Statistically, it’s hard to put Jeff Campbell onto a list of the Top 40 players of the past 40 years.

On the all-time lists, Campbell isn’t even in the Top 40 on the list of CU receivers (coming in 41st on all-time receiving yards list, with 28 receptions for 802 yards and one touchdown).

All-time rushers? 104th … with 23 carries for 439 yards and six touchdowns.

All-purpose yards? 43rd … with 802 yards receiving, 439 yards rushing, and 904 yards returning punts.

Campbell does rank third on the all-time list of punt returns, even though none of his 84 returns made it to the end zone.

Campbell was good enough at CU to be a fifth-round pick of the Detroit Lions in the 1990 draft (118th pick overall). Campbell enjoyed a five-year career in the NFL – four with the Lions and one with the Broncos.

What cements Campbell’s status as an all-time favorite for the Buff Nation is his well-documented relationship with Sal Aunese and, well, one play.

One fantastic play …


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