Jan. 6 2013 will go down in sports history as the last BCS National Championship game.
Held at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, the number-one ranked Florida State Seminoles faced the number-two Auburn Tigers.
Heisman trophy winner and FSU Quarterback Jameis Winston lead his team over 80 yards with a minute to go. In true Heisman fashion, Winston threw a short pass to wide receiver Rashad Greene at midfield that resulted in a 43 yard gain to put the Seminoles deep in Tiger territory. With 19 seconds to go, Winston threw a touchdown pass to his go-to wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin to put the seal on a wild 37 to 34 Seminole win over Auburn.
The Tigers led most of the the first half and up into the final quarter. The fourth quarter alone saw nearly four lead changes including two runbacks for touchdowns between both teams.
After the postgame celebration by FSU fans and players alike and the hoisting of the crystal American Football Coaches Association coaches trophy, it marked the end of an era that started in 1998.It was only fitting that the team that lost the first ever national championship game proved victorious in a roller coaster of a ride.
The BCS would rotate the venue of the national championship game between each of four major arenas: The Orange, Sugar, Fiesta and “the granddaddy of them all,” the Rose Bowl which will all keep their names in the new College Football Playoff system.
After dropping the inaugural game in 1997, FSU returned in 1998 to capture the second title in BCS history. In 2010, the Auburn Tigers appeared in the same venue only one other time to win the title, spearheaded by Cam Newton who is now the Carolina Panther’s star quarterback in the NFL. The Tigers season could be called a “Cinderella” season, with miracle victories at Georgia and Alabama.
Auburn was down 28-27 with only one second left to go on the clock and all hope seemed lost. The Tigers were ranked fourth while Alabama was the top school in the country. The 57 yard field goal attempt fell short and into the hands of Auburn Tiger Chris Davis. Davis never lost hope.
In what seemed like a sure ticket home, Chris Davis ran the ball back 99 yards and lifted the Tigers to their second national title game victory.
Unfortunately, the last chapter in this BCS novel was put on the shelf, never to be reopened.