5. NEBRASKA vs. TEXAS, 2009 BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP
Explosive offense reigns supreme in the current Big 12. Mack Brown’s Texas teams in the 2000s deserve a lot of credit for setting the tone, starting with Vince Young and continuing under Colt McCoy. The 2009 Longhorns averaged more than 39 points per game, and McCoy’s heroics Thanksgiving night against Texas A&M one week earlier seemingly paved his path to the Heisman Trophy.
Then came Ndamukong Suh.
In a conference increasingly known for its lack of defense, the first defense-only Heisman winner very nearly came from the penultimate Big 12 Conference Championship Game. Suh was a one-man wrecking crew that night against Texas, tallying 4.5 sacks and 12 tackles.
Behind Suh’s play, Nebraska limited Texas to all of 10 points until the game’s final second. Literally, the final second.
Suh’s effort is among the greatest individual showings in college football history. And, had that game been one second shorter, I truly believe Suh would have won the Heisman.
Likewise, I truly believe TCU and Cincinnati fans have a beef with that final second.