PASADENA, Calif. (AP) -- A winning kick put the controversy to
rest. The Texas Longhorns proved they did indeed belong in the Rose
Dusty Mangum made a 37-yard field goal as time expired and Texas (No. 5 ESPN/USA Today; No. 6 AP) edged Michigan 38-37
Saturday behind quarterback Vince Young in the first matchup of two of college football's elite
With flashbulbs popping throughout the Rose Bowl, Mangum sent a
wobbly kick through the uprights as the final two seconds ticked
off and the Longhorns players rushed the field. The kick came after
Michigan (No. 12 ESPN/USA Today; No. 13 AP) took its final two timeouts.
"I was hoping they would quit calling timeouts," said Mangum,
a walk-on senior. "It's something I've dreamed about. To come down
to a pressure kick -- why not?"
And exactly the kind of ending Texas coach Mack Brown wanted.
"There will never be a better game in the Rose Bowl," Brown
said. "You had two of the top four winningest programs and it
should come down to two seconds left."
All week, Brown and his Texas players were barraged by questions
about their worthiness to play in a Bowl Championship Series game.
The Longhorns (11-1) earned their trip West when they
leapfrogged fourth-ranked California in the final BCS standings,
helped by Brown's public pleas.
"I don't think we'll ever answer all the critics in sports,"
Young ran for 192 yards and four touchdowns while passing for
180 yards and another score. He led the final drive to Mangum's
kick, giving Brown his biggest win in seven years at Texas.
Garrett Rivas kicked three field goals, the last a 42-yarder
that squeezed just inside the right upright with 3:04 left to give
Michigan a 37-35 lead.
By bumping Cal, Texas also crashed the Rose Bowl's long-standing
tradition that the "Granddaddy" of bowl games pits a Pac-10 team
against the Big Ten champ.
Michigan (9-3) ranks No. 1 in college football with 842 wins and
Texas No. 3 with 787. And while it took more than 100 years for
them to meet on the field, their first was a doozy.
With Young's razzle-dazzle on touchdown runs of 20, 60, 10 and
23 yards and Henne's scoring throws to Edwards, the game was an
offensive showcase that simply came down to who had the ball last.
Michigan's Steve Breaston set a Rose Bowl record with 315 yards
total between his catches and kick returns, breaking the mark of
276 set by O.J. Simpson back in 1969.
The Wolverines nearly spoiled it for Texas, but Young simply
wouldn't let them.
Michigan was vulnerable against mobile quarterbacks all season
and never came close to containing Young, who calls his ability to
avoid tacklers in the open field the "Texas Two-Step."
"He was tough to tackle, but we should have gotten to him
several times," Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said. "I was
disappointed with the loss and with the tackling."
Young ran for a TD and passed for another in the first half, and
Henne matched him with a pair of scoring strikes to Edwards that
made it 14-14 at halftime.
But the fun had only just begun.
Young's second TD was a longer version of his first. Dropping
back to pass, he took a quick read of the field then took off.
He shook off a tackle 15 yards upfield and then outraced
All-America safety Ernest Shazor to the end zone to make 21-14.
Breaston, who gave the Wolverines good field position with his
kick returns all afternoon, brought the ball out to the 50. Three
plays later, he hauled in a pass from Henne and sprinted for the
end zone, diving for the pylon to make it 21-all.
By early in the third quarter, Texas had taken the lead three
times only to have Michigan tie it. The Longhorns came in having
outscored opponents 105-3 in the third quarter but gave up two
touchdowns on Michigan's first two drives of the second half.
The Wolverines took their first lead when Henne hit Edwards from
9 yards out and stretched it to 31-21 when Rivas kicked a 44-yard
But the Michigan defense had nothing left to stop Young from
After Rivas kicked a field goal that made it 34-28, Young
scrambled again for the end zone, leaving the Wolverines either
punching the air in frustration or bending over and gasping for
breath as Texas took a 35-34 lead before the frenetic ending.
"Thirty-seven points should have been enough to win," Carr
said. "There are no excuses."