1982 Orange Bowl
The 1982 edition of the Orange Bowl was played on January 1 at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida. It featured the Nebraska Cornhuskers of the Big Eight Conference and the top-ranked and undefeated Clemson Tigers of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
|1982 Orange Bowl|
|Date||January 1, 1982|
|MVP||Homer Jordan (QB, Clemson)|
Jeff Davis (LB, Clemson)
|Favorite||Nebraska by 4½ points |
|United States TV coverage|
|Announcers||Don Criqui and John Brodie|
Led by head coach Danny Ford, Clemson came into the game unbeaten at 11–0 and ranked #1, attempting to win its first national championship. Nebraska had started the 1981 season poorly, but then won their next eight games to emerge at 9–2 and fourth in the polls. Earlier in the day, #2 Georgia and #3 Alabama had both lost (24–20 to #8 Pittsburgh and 14–12 to #6 Texas respectively), opening the door for the Orange Bowl victor to claim the national title; Nebraska was favored by 4½ points.
Clemson scored first on a 41-yard field goal by Donald Igwebuike to take a 3–0 lead. Nebraska then succeeded with a trick play, as running back Mike Rozier threw a 25-yard halfback pass to Anthony Steels for a touchdown and a 7–3 lead. Igwebuike kicked a 37-yard field goal to pull Clemson to 7–6. Following a Nebraska fumble, Cliff Austin scored on a 2-yard touchdown run as and Clemson led 12–7 at halftime.
In the third quarter, Clemson's Homer Jordan threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to Perry Tuttle and Igwebuike added another field goal, this time a 36-yarder, and Clemson extended their lead to fifteen points at 22–7.
In the fourth quarter, Roger Craig scored for the Huskers on a 26-yard touchdown run. Following a Nebraska penalty on the first two-point try, Craig then scored from the eight on a two-point conversion attempt which closed the margin to 22–15. The Huskers got the ball back, but penalties ultimately killed the drive and forced them to punt the ball back to Clemson; the Tigers maintained possession for the bulk of the last six minutes and secured their first national championship in college football. They remained atop both final polls, while Nebraska dropped to eleventh (AP) and ninth (UPI).
- Clemson - Field goal, Donald Igwebuike 41
- Nebraska - Anthony Steels 25 pass from Mike Rozier (Kevin l kick)
- Clemson - Field goal, Igwebuike 37
- Clemson - Cliff Austin 2 run (pass failed)
- Clemson - Perry Tuttle 13 pass from Homer Jordan (Bob Paulling kick)
- Clemson - Field goal, Igwebuike 36
- Nebraska - Roger Craig 26 run (Craig run)
Statistics Clemson Nebraska First Downs 17 13 Rushes–yards 52–155 40–193 Passing yards 134 63 Passes 11–22–1 6–17–0 Total yards 289 256 Punts–average 4–46 6–43 Fumbles–lost 3–0 3–2 Turnovers by 1 2 Penalties-yards 7–57 8–64 Time of possession 32:22 27:38
- Papanek, John (January 11, 1982). "Year of the Tigers". Sports Illustrated. p. 14.
- "Clemson locks up national title on 22-15 victory". Reading Eagle. (Pennsylvania). Associated Press. January 2, 1982. p. 10.
- "Clemson peels off a national title". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. January 2, 1982. p. 1B.
- "No question: Clemson is best". Milwaukee Journal. (Los Angeles Times, AP, UPI). January 2, 1982. p. 11.
- "Clemson keeps its claim on No. 1". Milwaukee Sentinel. wire services. January 2, 1982. p. 1, part 2.
- "Polls agree that Tigers are No. 1". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). wire services. January 3, 1982. p. 3E.
- "Orange Bowl". Milwaukee Sentinel. (box score). January 2, 1982. p. 5, part 2.
- "Orange Bowl". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). (box score). January 2, 1982. p. 3B.