7 Craziest NCAA Football Trick Plays
Nothing gets the heart pumping like a successful trick play. From that moment of confusion, as you realize that something's wrong, to the pure joy (or agony) of watching the ball carrier dash untouched into the end zone, trick plays are some of the most exciting and memorable moments in football.
Over the decades NCAA football has been played, we've seen some unique plays run, but some stand out above the rest. These are the 7 craziest trick plays in NCAA history.
7) Cincinnati vs. Syracuse - 2012
In 2012, Cincinnati was playing Syracuse, and the Bearcats ran what looked to be no more than a standard run up the middle. That is, until Cincinnati running back George Winn leaped up just before the line of scrimmage and lobbed a pass to tight end Travis Kelce, who galloped 37 yards for the score.
6) Oregon vs. Michigan - 2007
Oregon makes the list for this wild play run against Michigan during the 2007 regular season. On the play, Oregon quarterback Dennis Dixon faked a hand-off before appearing to hand the ball behind his back to another runner in a 'Statue of Liberty' play. The Michigan defenders swarmed toward each of the two Oregon runners... while Dixon trotted into the end zone, having faked the 'Statue of Liberty' play as well.
5) Georgia Tech vs. Clemson - 2009
In 2009, Georgia Tech lined up against Clemson, then quickly changed their formation to attempt a long field goal. As the Clemson defense converged on the line to block the kick, Georgia Tech snapped the ball directly to kicker Scott Blair, who slung the ball to wide receiver Demaryius Thomas for a 34-yard touchdown.
4) Michigan St. vs. Notre Dame - 2010
What's better than some razzle-dazzle during regulation? How about trickery during overtime? Notre Dame had kicked a field goal and then stopped Michigan State in the first overtime, forcing MSU to attempt a 46-yard field goal to tie the game. The Spartans instead had their holder and backup quarterback Aaron Bates complete a 29 pass to tight-end Charlie Gnatt to win the game.
3) Boise State Fiesta Bowl vs. Oklahoma, Part I - 2007
The 2007 Fiesta Bowl was a David and Goliath story, with Adrian Peterson-led Oklahoma taking on Boise State, who had gone 12-0 in the tiny WAC conference but weren't regarded as nearly as talented as Oklahoma. Boise was down by 7 in the 4th quarter with 18 seconds to go, facing 4th and 16, and completed a 'hook and ladder' pass for a 50-yard touchdown to tie the game.
2) Nebraska Orange Bowl vs. Miami - 1984
The #2 play on the list comes from one of the greatest games in NCAA football history, the 1984 Orange Bowl between Nebraska and Miami. The Cornhuskers scored from 19 yards out, on an intentionally fumbled ball run in by a lineman, a play later dubbed "the fumblerooski," given that the only way a lineman can advance the ball is if it's fumbled.
1) Boise State Fiesta Bowl vs. Oklahoma, Part II - 2007
The craziest play, and #1 on the list, comes from the previously mentioned 2007 Fiesta Bowl. In overtime, Boise had matched Oklahoma's touchdown, but Boise decided to go for 2 rather than kick an extra point, betting the entire game on the conversion attempt. On the attempt, Boise successfully ran the 'Statue of Liberty' play, stunning mighty Oklahoma and completing the improbable Cinderella story.