In a few hours, 2008 will come to a close and we'll begin a new year on the eve of the biggest game in Utah football history. But to get to this point, the Utes still had to win twelve games and that is exactly what they did.
Some were memorable, some weren't, yet in the end, 2008 will go down as one of -- if not the most -- enjoyable seasons in Utah football history. But what will be the top memory of this year? Was it the opening season victory over Michigan? The stunning come-frome-behind wins over Oregon State and TCU? Or was it the dominating final performance against hated BYU? You decide...
Utah kicked off its 2008 season by walking into the Big House and defeating the storied Michigan Wolverines. While the victory in the end wasn't all that impressive, it began what would turn out to be one of the most memorable seasons in school history.
Utah vs. Michigan football 2008 (via darrenvc71)
Oregon State didn't have too impressive of a record when they rolled into Salt Lake, however, they were coming off a shocking victory over USC and took an eight point lead into the final minute of the game. That would provide Brian Johnson with one of the best drives in school history, as he guided Utah down field and not only threw a touchdown pass, but managed to take the ball in himself for the game-tying two-point conversion. After forcing a 3 and out, Utah did just enough on offense to get in field goal position and that's when Louie Sakoda took over, nailing the game-winning field goal as time expired.
Utes score 11 points in 90 seconds to beat Oregon State (via JazzyUte)
Billed as the biggest game in Mountain West history, the 10th ranked Utes hosted the 11th ranked TCU Horned Frogs. The winner would have the inside track to the BCS and the game did not disappoint. Though a defensive struggle for most of the contest, the Frogs did jump out to a 10-0 lead early, only to watch Utah slowly chip away at it. Trailing 10-6 with only 50 seconds to go, Johnson found Freddie Brown for the game-winning touchdown. Utah's dream season continued, while TCU would have to settle for 2nd place in the Mountain West.
Utes defeat #11 TCU in the final minute (via JazzyUte)
One win stood between the Utes and the BCS. Like in 2004, it would have to come against BYU. Unlike four years prior, however, BYU was actually a decent team, entering the contest with a 10-1 record and a top-20 ranking. After a tight battle early, Utah blew the game open in the second half and cruised to a 48-24 victory, capping off an undefeated season and earning the school their second BCS bowl berth.
Utes crush BYU, earn second BCS bid in five seasons (no music) (via JazzyUte)
And there you go. I chose those four games, but if you feel there should be another, let me know.
Now vote for your favorite.
What was the best game of 2008?
25-23 victory @ Michigan (4 votes)
31-28 victory over Oregon State (27 votes)
13-10 victory over TCU (43 votes)
48-24 victory over BYU (24 votes)
98 total votes