GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The greatest bowl finish ever.
Any doubters? It can be said with some certainty that a former Episcopalian nursing school has never won a $17 million BCS bowl with a Statue of Liberty play.
|Jared Zabransky's Broncos use the Statue of Liberty play to win the Fiesta. (Getty Images)|
"Who does that?" Boise State linebacker Josh Bean said of his coaches, their play-calling and the most significant bowl result in more than two decades. "That was the most gangster thing ever."
The answer is no one does that, not like the Broncos did in their 43-42 overtime victory over No. 7 Oklahoma. Armed with a "we may never be here again" attitude, Boise State captured the biggest mid-major college football result since BYU won the 1984 national championship.
Where it goes from here is up to coach Chris Petersen and his 13-0 Broncos.
"This," offensive tackle Andrew Woodruff said, "will bring Boise State to the top of college football. We can hang with the top teams in the nation. We are to be dealt with seriously."
Whoa, big fella. Let's celebrate the entertainment value first. Boise State went from 18 up in the second half to down seven with 62 seconds left. That's when the coaches started coming up with stuff the Kennedys broke out in their famous family touch football games.
The difference being, Boise was trying cream the Crimson giant. The school's football budget ($3.5 million) is essentially equal to Bob Stoops' annual salary. So why not, on fourth-and-18 from the 50, tell Drisan James to go downfield 15 yards, catch a Jared Zabransky pass and pitch to Jerard Rabb?
With seven seconds left, Rabb streaked into the end zone to tie it 35-35. With his team trailing 42-35 in overtime, receiver Vinny Perretta, that former walk-on, lined up in the shotgun and threw to tight end Derek Schouman on fourth-and-two.
Then came the greatest play of the greatest finish. Zabransky, a right-handed quarterback, put the ball in his left hand and deftly snuck it backhanded to running back Ian Johnson, who was streaking around the left end. There are still Sooners wondering who has the ball.
The play is called Statue Left. It was developed by the Boise quarterbacks and used once successfully this season.