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Best, worst of PSU bowl games

December 31, 2009 - Neil Rudel

Thought this was a fun read that you might enjoy. It will appear in Friday's Mirror as well.

My first bowl game was the 1983 Sugar Bowl, and I actually covered it for the Beaver County Times. My first bowl for the Mirror was the 1983 Aloha. It's been a fun ride ever since.

Happy new year to my blogging readership.

The Mirror's Neil Rudel has covered 22 Penn State bowl games. Here are the Nittany Lions' best and worst five performances that he's witnessed:


Rank Bowl/year Opponent/score Skinny

1. Fiesta/1987 Miami, 14-10 Superior defensive scheme upset top-ranked team with far more talent for JoePa's greatest win.

2. Sugar/1983 Georgia, 27-23 Lions relied on offensive arsenal to help control Herschel Walker en route to first national title.

3. Citrus/1994 Tennessee, 31-13 No. 13 Nits crushed No. 6 Vols as Collins and Carter sparked an offense that would preview 1994.

4. Fiesta/1992 Tennessee, 42-17 Lions went from being dominated in the first half to again physically overpowering UT.

5. Outback/1996 Auburn, 43-14 Richardson and Engram, despite a driving rain, teamed to make it four straight over SEC in bowls.


Rank Bowl/year Opponent/score Skinny

1. Rose/2009 USC, 38-24 Carroll could have made it worse as outclassed Lions were blown out 31-7 by halftime.

2. Blockbuster/1992 Stanford, 24-3 In last year as independent, JoePa later admitted he lost this team. They played like it and finished 7-5.

3. Citrus/1988 Clemson, 35-10 Listless effort that was sandwiched by pair of appearances in title game and '88 losing season.

4. Capital One/2003 Auburn, 13-9 Game ended with Larry Johnson complaining about his role in the offense. Imagine that.

5. Citrus/1998 Florida, 21-6 Outcome was pretty much determined after Curtis Enis (agent dealings) was suspended and Joe Jurevicius (grades) was left at home.


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