Thursday, July 30, 2009

#3: Syracuse- 28 Virginia Tech-26

Photos: Frank Ordonez, Post-Standard

The end is in sight. We're up to the #3 spot on the Biggesgt Syracuse Football Wins of the HumpIdiot Era. For the 3rd time, a game from 1998 lands on the countdown. This time it's Donovan McNabb's last second heroics vs. Virginia Tech that earns the honors.

Boss, "McNabb buzzer beater heroics and another swarming of the field by the idiots. Pre-last play discussion storming the field, seconds later we're in a pile in the end zone...a bit scary but a blast none the less. And tack on stunned VT fans...I can't top it."

AJV, "The most exciting SU game I've ever witnessed."

Russianator, "I watched this game on TV, we were throwing some dopey party in Albany, but McNabb to Brominski was certainly exciting."

President Bill Taft, The Sporthump, "Poncho and I had the opportunity to be at this game together (in a non-gay way) and had a whole lot of draft beers, dogs and easily influenced 19-year old lady friends to prove it. I do not know much about the ITT of the South, Virginia Tech, but I now they will remember the name Brominski."

Champ, " The throwback-to-the-tight-end play, how many times did that work in the '90s? Overlooked is the ballsy 4th down QB draw play called by Kevin Rogers. The Idiots are all class....after swarming the field Boss and I ran over to the Virginia Tech corner of fans and proceeded to offer up a Mile High Salute to the stunned Hokie fans. We appreciated their shower of trash upon us."

Relive the magic Orange fans, here's the long version (9 minutes):

For those of you only wanting to invest a minute:


Brian Harrison said...

Still cool to watch.

Calogero said...

I was 12 years old during this season, and I'm not ashamed to admit that this season of Syracuse football mattered wayyyyyyy too much to me at this stage in my life. I cried at two moments this season: one was #4 on this list, when Donovan was standing on top of the bench waving a towel with us up 50; just the absolutely perfect way to close out his career at the dome. And the other time I cried was after McNabb to Brominski.

D said...

I was a Jr. in HS and at this game, mischeviously under the influence of myriad party favors in the nosebleeds with two of my friends, getting more and more agitated heading into halftime. Once halftime hit, I found my folks, who were in a luxury box at the 40 yard line with a prominent local company (whose name adorns a certain local building). We immediately identified the lone engineer in the room, who just so happened to be a Virginia Tech alum (love the "ITT of the South" btw). The sh*t talking got somewhat vulgur. Definitely inappopriate for my Dad's colleagues, but they were surprisingly enthralled/amused with the creativity. On that final drive, it felt like after every positive play, especially the 4th down run, everyone within eyesight was nervously turning around nodding at each other with eyes and mouths stretched into giant O's of disbelief, like a weird transmogrification of giving peace to one's neighbor in a Catholic mass. Same with the first and goal getter.

And then I heard some commotion heading into the time out... (was it the timeout or am I "misremembering")... "He just blew chunks."


"Right there, on the field!"

At that moment we knew we had a classic. What a warrior. This was meant to happen. You don't come back from 12 down, or whatever it was, culminating with a last minute drive on Virginia Tech's vaunted defense and have your legendary QB hurl on the field and THEN lose. It's impossible. We were witnessing a game we may very well someday tell our kids about.

Then there was the sack. In a typical Syracuse response, everyone in the box, as well as everyone I could see in the surrounding sections, let out that "Aw sh*t, of course that happened..." look that was so familiar to Syracuse lifers at that point in time. Well, except for one person. That sh*t eating grin and nod of approval engulfed the face of my new "friend" as the blue shirts scurried into place to spike the ball. After the clock was killed, he offered me his hand to show he's a good sportsman. With very likeable sportsman qualities, acting in a way that sportsmen do... sportsmanlike.

F that.

D said...

"If we get this one, I'm jumping over the ledge and rushing the field," I announced. It must've been a solid eight or ten foot drop to the top row of bleachers, maybe only six, I don't know, nor do I care. (Don't you hate that when in the middle of a perfectly good story, the person/people telling it stop to debate mundane details? "It was six feet!" "No, it may have been eight!" "Maybe it was six-and-a-half, seven." But I digress...)

By this point, it felt like the play clock was accelerating. There wasn't nearly enough time for Dono to read the D, set his line, call out any adjustments to his receivers, there was no way he was going to get this snap off.

But he did, seemingly just in the nick of time, and rolled out right as the frantic VT defensive front and LB's all scrambled to flood the right side. There was no room. What the hell was he gonna do? In what seemed like an akward, against the grain attempt, Dono gave a solid swipe that shook the building to its core. The ball came out and just the right trajectory, with just the right umph, and somehow the big white oaf in the end zone finagled his way behind the first DB and stepped in front of the safety DB, at EXACTLY the right moment. He collapsed onto his butt with the ball squeezed decidedly in his belly. You could've detonated an IED on the turf, and the same mess of limbs would've flown into the air.

They all stormed the field, every last one of 'em in the student section across the way. A friend of mine, sitting with his family just a few rows in front of our box, offered his hand in case I really wanted to make the jump and get out there.

But I didn't take him up on it.

This was too good. We could never be the victors in this situation... which made the inevitability of the moment that much more inevitable.

I peeked over at my newly stunned friend, but didn't need to say anything to him. I didn't need to say anything to anyone, actually. I just stood there, smiling... nodding... laughing.

Were those naked people on the field? Yes. They were. All of them. While only some were physically naked, we all were naked with emotion. And so the story continues to be told.