1993 NCAA Division I-A football season

The 1993 NCAA Division I-A football season saw Florida State crowned national champions, in both the AP and Coaches poll.

1993 NCAA Division I-A season
Number of teams106[1]
Preseason AP No. 1Florida State[2]
Post-season
Bowl games19
Heisman TrophyCharlie Ward (quarterback, Florida State)
Bowl Coalition Championship
1994 Orange Bowl
SiteMiami Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida
Champion(s)Florida State (AP, Coaches, FWAA)
Division I-A football seasons
← 1992
1994 →

Under the Bowl Coalition, undefeated Big 8 champ and No. 2 ranked Nebraska hosted ACC champ and No. 1 ranked Florida State in the Orange Bowl. This produced a clear champion in the Coaches Poll and the AP poll, despite Florida State's loss to Notre Dame 31–24 during the regular season, in a game known by many as the "Game of the Century". This much hyped clash between No. 1 and No. 2 was the site of the first ever "live" broadcast of the ESPN College GameDay show and did not fail to live up to expectations as Irish defensive back Shawn Wooden batted down a Charlie Ward pass in the end zone with three seconds left to play. Despite the win over Florida State, Notre Dame's title chances ended the very next week when the Fighting Irish lost to No. 17 Boston College. Further controversy surrounded the inclusion of one-loss Florida State in the national title game over undefeated West Virginia, who was ranked No. 2 (ahead of Florida State) by the final regular season coaches' poll but not the AP (Nebraska was No. 2 in the AP).

Despite beating Florida State in the regular season, Notre Dame finished No. 2 in the two major polls. Florida State, during the 1993 regular season played No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Nebraska, No. 15 Miami, No. 5 Florida, No. 19 North Carolina, and No. 23 Clemson. FSU went 3–1 vs top 7 teams while playing only 1 home game in the 4 contests.

Florida State's Charlie Ward threw for 3,032 yards, completed 70 percent of his passes and became the first player to win the Heisman Trophy and the national championship in the same season since Pittsburgh's Tony Dorsett in 1976.

The Alamo Bowl played its inaugural game.

The Sunshine Classic was no longer sponsored by Blockbuster Entertainment, and was now known as the Carquest Bowl.

Rule changesEdit

  • The distance between the hashmarks was narrowed from 53 feet, 4 inches (the same as high school football, with the exception of Texas, which is the same as College Football at 40 feet) to 40 feet (the standard used by the National Football League through the 1971 season). This cut down on severe angles for kickers who attempted short field goals, although angles would still be far greater than those encountered by kickers in the NFL, where the hashmarks are the same width as the goalposts, 18 feet, 6 inches.
  • The "fumblerooski" play is outlawed as intentional fumbles are now illegal.
  • Players who are bleeding or have open wounds are required to leave the game until the bleeding is stopped and the wound treated.
  • The loss of down penalty associated with offensive pass interference has been deleted. The yardage penalty remains at 15 yards.
  • Officials are instructed to flag players for unsportsmanlike conduct (15 yards) for actions on the field that are prolonged, excessive, or meant to bring attention to themselves (such as the "Heisman pose" and the firing of six-shooters).
  • On kickoffs, at least four players must be lined up on either side of the kicker.
  • All balls must be made of leather. Composite and rubber balls were outlawed.

Conference and program changesEdit

Five teams changed conferences and one team dropped its football team prior to the season. As such, the total number of Division I-A schools decreased to 106.

School 1992 Conference 1993 Conference
Arkansas State Indians I-A Independent Big West
Cal State Fullerton Titans Big West Dropped Program
Louisiana Tech Bulldogs I-A Independent Big West
Northern Illinois Huskies I-A Independent Big West
Penn State Nittany Lions I-A Independent Big Ten
Southwestern Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns I-A Independent Big West

Regular SeasonEdit

August-SeptemberEdit

The preseason AP Poll featured Florida State at No. 1 and defending champion Alabama at No. 2, followed by No. 3 Michigan, No. 4 Texas A&M, and No. 5 Miami.

August 28: No. 1 Florida State shut out Kansas 42-0 in the Kickoff Classic. None of the other top teams had started their schedules, but Miami moved up to tie Michigan at No. 3 in the next poll, with Texas A&M falling to No. 5.

September 4: No. 1 Florida State won 45-7 at Duke, No. 2 Alabama defeated Tulane 31-17, No. 3 Michigan beat Washington State 41-14, fellow No. 3 Miami visited No 20 Boston College for a 23-7 victory, and No. 5 Texas A&M shut out LSU 24-0. Miami dropped back to No. 4 in the next poll, with the other top teams remaining the same.

September 11: No. 1 Florida State dominated No. 21 Clemson 57-0 and No. 2 Alabama won 17-6 at Vanderbilt, but No. 3 Michigan fell 27-23 to No. 11 Notre Dame. No. 4 Miami was idle, while No. 5 Texas A&M lost 44-14 at No. 17 Oklahoma. No. 8 Tennessee beat No. 22 Georgia 38-6 and moved up in the next poll: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Miami, No. 4 Notre Dame, and No. 5 Tennessee.

September 18: No. 1 Florida State visited No. 13 North Carolina and won 33-7. No. 2 Alabama defeated Arkansas 43-3, No. 3 Miami beat Virginia Tech 21-2, and No. 4 Notre Dame won 36-14 over Michigan State. No. 5 Tennessee fell 41-34 to No. 9 Florida, who replaced them in the next poll: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Miami, No. 4 Notre Dame, and No. 5 Florida.

September 25: No. 1 Florida State and No. 5 Florida were idle. No. 2 Alabama blasted Louisiana Tech 56-3. No. 3 Miami held off No. 13 Colorado 35-29 in a game which featured a benches-clearing brawl near the end of the first half. No. 4 Notre Dame shut out Purdue 17-0, and the top five remained the same in the next poll.

OctoberEdit

October 2: No. 1 Florida State continued their string of blowout victories with a 51-0 annihilation of Georgia Tech. No. 2 Alabama won 17-6 at South Carolina, No. 3 Miami beat Georgia Southern 30-7, No. 4 Notre Dame visited Stanford for a 48-20 victory, and No. 5 Florida defeated Mississippi State 38-24. The top five again remained the same in the next poll.

October 9: No. 1 Florida State had outscored their first five opponents by a total of 228-14, but their next foe would be No. 3 Miami, who had defeated them in heartbreaking fashion in both 1991 and 1992. This time, the Seminoles finally prevailed with a 28-10 victory. No. 2 Alabama was idle, No. 4 Notre Dame shut out Pittsburgh 44-0, No. 5 Florida won 58-3 at LSU, and No. 6 Ohio State was a 20-12 victor at Illinois. The next poll featured No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Notre Dame, No. 4 Florida, and No. 5 Ohio State.

October 16: No. 1 Florida State defeated No. 15 Virginia 40-14. No. 2 Alabama trailed No. 10 Tennessee late in the fourth quarter, but put together a game-ending 83-yard drive to salvage a 17-17 tie. No. 3 Notre Dame won 45-20 at Brigham Young. In another SEC nailbiter, No. 4 Florida fell 38-35 to No. 19 Auburn on a late field goal. No. 5 Ohio State beat No. 25 Michigan State 28-21, and No. 6 Nebraska defeated Kansas State 45-28. The next poll featured No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 4 Alabama, and No. 5 Nebraska.

October 23: No. 1 Florida State was idle, No. 2 Notre Dame defeated USC 31-13, and No. 3 Ohio State won 45-24 at Purdue. No. 4 Alabama overcame an injury to quarterback Jay Barker and beat Mississippi 19-14. No. 5 Nebraska overwhelmed Missouri 49-7, but No. 6 Miami was even more impressive in a 49-0 shutout of Syracuse. The Hurricanes moved up in the next poll: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 4 Miami, and No. 5 Alabama.

October 30: No. 1 Florida State shut out Wake Forest 55-0, No. 2 Notre Dame defeated Navy 58-27, No. 3 Ohio State beat No. 12 Penn State 24-6, No. 4 Miami won 42-7 over Temple, and No. 5 Alabama blanked Southern Mississippi 40-0. The top five remained the same in the next poll.

November-DecemberEdit

November 6: No. 1 Florida State won 49-20 at Maryland. No. 2 Notre Dame was idle. No. 3 Ohio State blocked a last-second field goal to come away with a 14-14 tie against No. 15 Wisconsin. No. 4 Miami won 35-7 at Pittsburgh. No. 5 Alabama carried a 31-game unbeaten streak into their game against LSU, but the Crimson Tide threw four second-half interceptions to enable a 17-13 victory for the Tigers. No. 6 Nebraska was taken down to the wire by Kansas, but the Cornhuskers stopped a Jayhawks two-point conversion to preserve a 21-20 win and move back into the top five: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Miami, No. 4 Nebraska, and No. 5 Ohio State.

November 13: Up to this point, No. 1 Florida State had defeated all nine of their opponents by 18 points or more, but now they would face their toughest test in a “Game of the Century” against No. 2 Notre Dame. The Irish stunned the Seminoles by running off 24 consecutive points after an early Florida State touchdown, and they still led 31-17 with a few minutes left to play. But FSU quarterback Charlie Ward led the Seminoles on a rapid drive which resulted in a touchdown pass on 4th-and-20, and the Irish went three-and-out on the next possession. Getting the ball back with less than a minute left, Florida State made it all the way to Notre Dame’s 14-yard line, but Ward’s last-second desperation pass was knocked away, and the Irish prevailed 31-24. Meanwhile, No. 3 Miami defeated Rutgers 31-17, No. 4 Nebraska beat Iowa State 49-17 to clinch the Big 8 title and an Orange Bowl berth, and No. 5 Ohio State won 23-17 over Indiana. The next poll featured No. 1 Notre Dame, No. 2 Florida State, No. 3 Nebraska, No. 4 Miami, and No. 5 Ohio State.

November 20: As No. 1 Notre Dame went into their season-ending game against No. 17 Boston College (a team which they had beaten 54-7 the previous year), the only uncertainty seemed to be whether their national championship opponent should be Nebraska in the Orange Bowl or Florida State in a rematch. However, the Eagles shocked the Irish by dominating the first three quarters, and BC held a 38-17 lead early in the fourth. Notre Dame responded with a frantic comeback, scoring 22 points in 11 minutes to go back on top by a single point. But, just as Florida State had done the previous week, Boston College went on one last drive into Notre Dame territory. This time the Irish were not able to make the stop, as walk-on kicker David Gordon hit a last-second field goal to give the Eagles a 41-39 win. No. 2 Florida State bounced back with a 62-3 domination of North Carolina State, and No. 3 Nebraska was idle. No. 4 Miami suffered a 17-14 loss at No. 9 West Virginia; the Mountaineers, who had started the season unranked, improved their record to 10-0. No. 5 Ohio State needed a win over unranked Michigan to clinch the Big Ten title and their first Rose Bowl berth in nine years. Instead, the Buckeyes threw interceptions on four straight possessions and failed to reach the Wolverines’ 20-yard line at any point in the game. Michigan’s 28-0 win put No. 12 Wisconsin, who held the tiebreaker advantage over Ohio State, in line for a trip to Pasadena. No. 6 Auburn defeated No. 11 Alabama 22-14 in the Iron Bowl; the Tigers finished the season with a perfect 11-0 record, but were ineligible for postseason play due to recruiting violations. The next poll featured No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Nebraska, No. 3 Auburn, No. 4 Notre Dame, and No. 5 West Virginia.

November 26-27: No. 1 Florida State won 33-21 at No. 7 Florida, and No. 2 Nebraska defeated No. 16 Oklahoma 21-7. No. 3 Auburn and No. 4 Notre Dame had finished their schedules. No. 11 Boston College almost pulled off another upset, but No. 5 West Virginia came back from an 11-point fourth quarter deficit to win 17-14 and complete their undefeated season. The Mountaineers moved up in the next AP Poll: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Nebraska, No. 3 West Virginia, No. 4 Auburn, and No. 5 Notre Dame. The Coaches’ Poll disagreed with the AP’s ordering of the top teams, choosing Nebraska for No. 1, West Virginia for No. 2, and Florida State for No. 3.

With No. 4 Auburn ineligible, No. 16 Alabama represented the SEC Western Division in the conference championship game on December 4. No. 9 Florida took revenge for the previous year’s defeat with a 28-13 victory, earning the Gators a trip to the Sugar Bowl. Even though the top teams had already finished their schedule, the AP voters slightly shuffled their order in the final poll of the regular season: No. 1 Florida State, No. 2 Nebraska, No. 3 West Virginia, No. 4 Notre Dame, and No. 5 Auburn. The Coaches’ Poll remained the same.

Undefeated Nebraska was assured of a spot in the national championship game. The organizers chose Florida State as the Cornhuskers' Orange Bowl opponent, feeling that the Seminoles’ pattern of dominant victories outweighed Notre Dame’s head-to-head win and West Virginia’s undefeated record. (Florida State had easily beaten Miami and Maryland, two teams which the Mountaineers struggled to beat.) Notre Dame would face No. 7 Texas A&M, the SWC champion, in the Cotton Bowl, while West Virginia squared off against No. 8 Florida in the Sugar Bowl. The major bowl matchups were rounded out by No. 9 Wisconsin against No. 14 UCLA in the Rose and No. 10 Miami against No. 16 Arizona in the Fiesta.

Conference standingsEdit

1993 Atlantic Coast Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team   W   L     W   L  
No. 1 Florida State $   8 0     12 1  
No. 19 North Carolina   6 2     10 3  
No. 23 Clemson   5 3     9 3  
Virginia   5 3     7 5  
NC State   4 4     7 5  
Georgia Tech   3 5     5 6  
Duke   2 6     3 8  
Maryland   2 6     2 9  
Wake Forest   1 7     2 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Big East Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 7 West Virginia $ 7 0 0 11 1 0
No. 15 Miami (FL) 6 1 0 9 3 0
No. 13 Boston College 5 2 0 9 3 0
No. 22 Virginia Tech 4 3 0 9 3 0
Syracuse 3 4 0 6 4 1
Pittsburgh 2 5 0 3 8 0
Rutgers 1 6 0 4 7 0
Temple 0 7 0 1 10 0
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Big Eight Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 3 Nebraska $ 7 0 0 11 1 0
No. 16 Colorado 5 1 1 8 3 1
No. 20 Kansas State 4 2 1 9 2 1
No. 17 Oklahoma % 4 3 0 9 3 0
Kansas 3 4 0 5 7 0
Missouri 2 5 0 3 7 1
Iowa State 2 5 0 3 8 0
Oklahoma State 0 7 0 3 8 0
  • $ – Bowl Coalition representative as champion
    % – Bowl Coalition at-large representative
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Big Ten Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 6 Wisconsin + 6 1 1 10 1 1
No. 11 Ohio State + 6 1 1 10 1 1
No. 8 Penn State 6 2 0 10 2 0
Indiana 5 3 0 8 4 0
No. 21 Michigan 5 3 0 8 4 0
Illinois 5 3 0 5 6 0
Michigan State 4 4 0 6 6 0
Iowa 3 5 0 6 6 0
Minnesota 3 5 0 4 7 0
Northwestern 0 8 0 2 9 0
Purdue 0 8 0 1 10 0
  • + – Conference co-champions
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Big West Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
Southwestern Louisiana + 5 1 0 8 3 0
Utah State + 5 1 0 7 5 0
Nevada 4 2 0 7 4 0
New Mexico State 4 2 0 5 6 0
Northern Illinois 3 3 0 4 7 0
Pacific (CA) 2 4 0 3 8 0
UNLV 2 4 0 3 8 0
Louisiana Tech 2 4 0 2 9 0
San Jose State 2 4 0 2 9 0
Arkansas State 1 5 0 2 8 1
  • + – Conference co-champions
1993 Mid-American Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
Ball State $ 7 0 1 8 3 1
Western Michigan 6 1 1 7 3 1
Bowling Green 5 1 2 6 3 2
Central Michigan 5 4 0 5 6 0
Akron 4 4 0 5 6 0
Ohio 4 5 0 4 7 0
Eastern Michigan 3 5 0 4 7 0
Toledo 3 5 0 4 7 0
Miami 3 6 0 4 7 0
Kent State 0 9 0 0 11 0
  • $ – Conference champion
1993 Pacific-10 Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 10 Arizona + 6 2 0 10 2 0
No. 18 UCLA + 6 2 0 8 4 0
USC + 6 2 0 8 5 0
Washington 5 3 0 7 4 0
No. 25 California 4 4 0 9 4 0
Arizona State 4 4 0 6 5 0
Washington State 3 5 0 5 6 0
Oregon 2 6 0 5 6 0
Stanford 2 6 0 4 7 0
Oregon State 2 6 0 4 7 0
  • + – Conference co-champions
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Southeastern Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
Eastern Division
No. 5 Florida x$ 7 1 0 11 2 0
No. 12 Tennessee* x 6 1 1 9 2 1
Kentucky 4 4 0 6 6 0
Georgia 2 6 0 5 6 0
South Carolina* 2 6 0 4 7 0
Vanderbilt* 1 7 0 4 7 0
Western Division
No. 4 Auburn 8 0 0 11 0 0
No. 14 Alabama* x 5 2 1 9 3 1
Arkansas* 3 4 1 5 5 1
LSU 3 5 0 5 6 0
Ole Miss* 3 5 0 5 6 0
Mississippi State* 2 5 1 3 6 2
Championship: Florida 28, Alabama 13
  • $ – Conference champion
  • x – Division champion/co-champions
  • † – Ineligible for the postseason due to NCAA probation.
    * – Alabama later forfeited all regular-season wins and one tie due to NCAA violations, giving an official record of 1–12 overall and 0–8 SEC. The forfeit of the tie retroactively gave Tennessee a share of the East title.
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Southwest Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 9 Texas A&M $ 7 0 0 10 2 0
Texas 5 2 0 5 5 1
Texas Tech 5 2 0 6 6 0
Rice 3 4 0 6 5 0
Baylor 3 4 0 5 6 0
TCU 2 5 0 4 7 0
SMU 1 5 1 2 7 2
Houston 1 5 1 1 9 1
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1993 Western Athletic Conference football standings
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
Fresno State + 6 2 0 8 4 0
Wyoming + 6 2 0 8 4 0
BYU + 6 2 0 6 6 0
Utah 5 3 0 7 6 0
Colorado State 5 3 0 5 6 0
New Mexico 4 4 0 6 5 0
San Diego State 4 4 0 6 6 0
Hawaii 3 5 0 6 6 0
Air Force 1 7 0 4 8 0
UTEP 0 8 0 1 11 0
  • + – Conference co-champions
1993 NCAA Division I-A independents football records
Conf Overall
Team W   L   T W   L   T
No. 2 Notre Dame     11 1 0
No. 24 Louisville     9 3 0
Cincinnati     8 3 0
Army     6 5 0
Memphis State     6 5 0
Tulsa     4 6 1
Navy     4 7 0
Tulane     3 9 0
Southern Miss     2 8 1
East Carolina     2 9 0
Rankings from AP Poll

No. 1 and No. 2 progressEdit

Florida State's Seminoles were the unanimous choice for No. 1 beginning with the October 19 poll and the three after that, receiving all 62 votes. After Notre Dame's 31–24 defeat of Florida State on November 13, Notre Dame got all 62 first place votes in the next poll.

WEEKS No. 1 No. 2 Event Date
PRE - 7 Florida State Alabama Tennessee 17, Alabama 17 Oct 16
8 - 11 Florida State Notre Dame Notre Dame 31, Florida St. 24 Nov 13
12 Notre Dame Florida State Boston College 41, Notre Dame 39 Nov 20
13-15 Florida State Nebraska Florida State 18, Nebraska 16 Jan 1

Bowl gamesEdit

Final rankingsEdit

Final AP PollEdit

  1. Florida State
  2. Notre Dame
  3. Nebraska
  4. Auburn
  5. Florida
  6. Wisconsin
  7. West Virginia
  8. Penn State
  9. Texas A&M
  10. Arizona
  11. Ohio State
  12. Tennessee
  13. Boston College
  14. Alabama
  15. Miami (FL)
  16. Colorado
  17. Oklahoma
  18. UCLA
  19. North Carolina
  20. Kansas State
  21. Michigan
  22. Virginia Tech
  23. Clemson
  24. Louisville
  25. California

Final Coaches PollEdit

  1. Florida St.
  2. Notre Dame
  3. Nebraska
  4. Florida
  5. Wisconsin
  6. West Virginia
  7. Penn St.
  8. Texas A&M
  9. Arizona
  10. Ohio St.
  11. Tennessee
  12. Boston College
  13. Alabama
  14. Oklahoma
  15. Miami (FL)
  16. Colorado
  17. UCLA
  18. Kansas St.
  19. Michigan
  20. Virginia Tech
  21. North Carolina
  22. Clemson
  23. Louisville
  24. California
  25. Southern California

Awards and honorsEdit

Heisman TrophyEdit

The Heisman Memorial Trophy Award is given to the Most Outstanding Player of the year

Winner: Charlie Ward, Florida State, Quarterback (2310 votes)

Other major awardsEdit

Coaching changesEdit

Preseason and in-seasonEdit

School Outgoing coach Date Reason Replacement
Houston John Jenkins April 30 resigned [3] Kim Helton
NC State Dick Sheridan June 29 resigned [4] Mike O'Cain
Washington Don James August 22 resigned [5] Jim Lambright
UTEP David Lee October 17 fired [6] Charlie Bailey

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "1993 NCAA Division IA Football Power Ratings". www.jhowell.net.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-02. Retrieved 2009-01-03.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Houston Football Coach Resigns". Chicago Tribune. Associated Press. May 2, 1993. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  4. ^ Chuck Carree (June 30, 1993). "Sheridan's resignation stuns, worries local Wolfpack fans". Star-News. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  5. ^ Mike Downey (August 23, 1993). "Too-Harsh Penalties Don't Fit the Crimes". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 11, 2013.
  6. ^ "UTEP fires coach after loss to Utah". Deseret News. Associated Press. October 18, 1993. Retrieved December 11, 2013.