Appalachian State Upsets #5 Michigan
For this week ThrowBack lets take it back to 9/1/07 when Appalachian State beat 5th ranked Michigan in "The Big House", in what MANY fans are saying is the greatest upset ever. Lets run through a chain of events to really determine if that is accurate
Appalachian State had the ball on Michigan's 40 yrd line, 1st and 10, with 1:15 seconds on the clock and 1 timeout down 31-32. QB Aramnti Edwards was already having a monster day with 4 total Tds, 1 rushing and 3 passing, but on the previous possession Edwards threw an interception to Brandent Englemon. Wolverines would fail to capitalize off the turnover after their field goal attempt was blocked.
At the 40 yard line, Edwards completed a 6 yrd pass to Hans Batchion and instantly went into the hurry up offense. He then would complete a 5 yard pass to Dexter Jackson for the first down and stopping the clock (In college the clock stops after First Downs). On the next play, ball at the 30, Armani scrambled to his left and threw the prettiest pass he could have thrown in that situation to CoCo Hilary, who caught it at the 22 yard line and ended up at the 5 yard line. CoCo caught the pass in open space and utilized every bit of it, even carrying 3 tacklers for 5 yards before going down.
App State would call a timeout stopping the clock at 30 seconds with the ball on Michigan's 5 yrd line. Coming out of the timeout, they set up kicker Julian Rauch for the biggest moment of his life. Michigan then postponed it with a timeout of their own, trying to "freeze" Rauch. After Rauch thought about this situation that can make him an instant hero, he made the 24 yard'er that would put App State up for good 34-32.
It wasn't over though. With only 25 seconds to work with, Michigan would make their way down the field with a 46 yard bomb from Chad Henne to Mario Manningham. Chad and Mario on that play really showed their skill set, first with Henne stepping up in the pocket and throwing a GREAT pass, then Mario running down the pass while the corner was struggling to keep up.
After that play fans in "The Big House" let out a very loud sigh of relief, THINKING they have escaped one but it wasnt over. With the ball sitting on the right hash of the 20 yard line and 5 seconds left, Michigan kicker Jason Gingell set up for the game winner. This is what it says in the stat book; "Jason Gingel 37 yard field goal BLOCKED." But the stat book doesn't explain that Cory Ranch, who blocked the kick, ran out the clock with a 52 yard return getting tracked down and tackled at Michigan's 18 yard line, Game Over.
And that's when the pandemonium just kicked up to another level. App State shocked the world and themselves. After being asked in one word to describe what just happen, Armanti Edwards told reporter simply "We just beat Michigan" Of course its more than one word but that was the perfect answer.
Every college football fan in the world was flabbergasted. No one was ever expecting that to happen. I would say this is one of the greatest upsets but a lot of people don't remember App State was a VERY good team that year. Armanti Edwards, who finished the day with 223 yards in the air and 62 on the ground, was a great college player. He holds countless records at App State and he was the Walter Payton Award winner 2 years straight (08', 09') which is the Division I-AA version of the Heisman. Coming into that game, App State was the #1 team in D1-AA football and was the defending D1-AA champs. They finished the 2007 season 13-2 and won the D1-AA National Championship beating out current Ravens QB, Joe Flacco and the Delaware Blue Hens.
Michigan was then destroyed by Dennis Dixon and the un-ranked Oregon Ducks in "The Big House" the very next week. They finished the season with a 9-4 record, second behind Ohio State in the Big East. App State beat a Michigan team that had Jake Long, Chad Henne, Mike Hart, and Mario Manningham on the roster, with legendary coach, Lloyd Carr on the sidelines. .
No Division I-AA team had beaten a team ranked in The Associated Press poll between 1989 and 2006, and it's unlikely that it had ever happened before. The Division I subdivisions were created in 1978. Knowing all of this, Would you say this is the Greatest Upset Ever?