*This post is part of a week long series being sponsored by EA Sports NCAA Football 2011.*
This one is a tough one being a Utah fan as I could choose being at the Fiesta Bowl against Pitt or watching the Sugar Bowl beat down over Alabama up 21-0. I have a few so I am not going to limit it to just one. A recent favorite moment was last year's game where Utah traveled to take on TCU. The game featured Utah at 16 with TCU at four and it was the first big start for freshman Jordan Wynn who just took over the reins. Everyone was making a big deal out of this game and I was as pumped as the Sugar Bowl game the year prior, but then the game started and that was that. Part of the reason for the hype that made the build up to the game so cool was with ESPN's GameDay in town, CBS College Sports made a huge deal of it with a very nice on location pregame, TCU had the custom Nike uni's that are sick, and finally Ammon G. Carter stadium was actually rocking.
One moment that would seem odd to an outsider in 2004 was the BYU game and not the Fiesta Bowl. Had BYU somehow upset Utah then the Utes would have been a really good team and not a great. The BYU game in 2004 since it was a blowout in a standing room only crowd at Rice-Eccles made it even better that the Utes blew out the Cougars. Do not get me wrong being at the Fiesta Bowl in person and watching Utah run trick plays and abuse an out manned Pitt team was awesome, but crushing your rival to get to a place they have never been was amazing.
Now onto my favorite moment.
It has to be the 13-0 Sugar Bowl season, the season itself had a ton of great moments like the come from behind win in 90 seconds over Oregon State, and getting help from TCU's freshman kicker to miss a few to help Utah win. Beating Alabama was just amazing. There was also the Michigan game that at the time was a big deal, but resident bad-ass kicker/punter Louie Sakoda bailed out Utah in the Michigan game as well as the Air Force, and New Mexico game that was some how close.
The 2008 season was somewhat more sweet then the 2004 because 2008 was not to be thought of anything special until that TCU game when both teams were highly ranked for a Thursday night game, but the Sugar Bowl game was amazing.
I was working at a sports radio station filling in producing the evening drive show so it was all Utah football which was awesome and I was pumped, and then listening to Barry Switzer say that none of the players on Utah's team would have been recruited by Alabama made me upset (even tough technically true because of geography but still).
I was in charge of grabbing audio highlights, and if I still worked there I would post it here because it was pretty nice with the calls by Daryl Johnston gushing over the Utes as they were up 21-0. Watching the game with the two hosts was very cool since it was just a few of us and with it being late no one was really in the building.
Remembering Stevenson Sylvester and Paul Krueger just rush pass the supposed stacked offensive line early in the game to sack John Parker Wilson multiple times was very cool. Then seeing the hurry up offense in the first drive which was all Brian Johnson carving up the 'Bama defense and that drive had very, very little to do with offensive coordinator Andy Ludwig. Seeing Mount Cody huffing and puffing on the first drive had all the Utes excited to see that the Alabama defensive line was not going to be able to keep up with them.
RB Matt Asiast who outside of Eric Weddle is the best Utah player to run the Wildcat with amazing success. Everyone in the stadium knew what was coming and Asiata took the snap ran up the gut and scored a touchdown. This was just a complete and utter beat down over the Tide who was number one for the majority of the season.
There was a scare early on that freaked all of us out which was when Alabama punted the ball to Bren Casteel who had trouble all year long fielding punts alongside every other Ute return man had. The ball bounced off his helmet and he caught it and fell to the ground as the kicking unit smothered him. Had that ball been dropped Alabama would have had a straight path to the endzone and the game could have been different.
No matter what anyone tells me Alabama did not show up for that game, and the let down excuse is still old and gets me all fired up, and for at least that game Nick Saban was caught with his pants down as the Utah coaching staff vastly out coach the supposed best coach in college football.
The only thing that may ever top this is the first time Utah goes to the Rose Bowl which could be this year with the new BCS rules, but that would require an amazing and over achieving season, or in 2012 when the Ute team will be stacked and have a year under their built within the Pac-10.
Now up to you, what was your all-time favorite moment from your college football team.
If you are feeling all nostalgic here is the entire 2009 Sugar Bowl, thanks Hulu.