Welles Crowther! Will Ferrell! Winning! What a game.
BC’s incredible 37-31 upset win over the #9 USC on September 14, 2014 is our number two moment of the decade.
This game had it all for BC; 400 yards on the ground, 54 yards in the air, and to top it all off a missed extra point. It was so quintessential BC, and it felt so right. Most importantly, this was the inaugural Red Bandana Game and it delivered tenfold. The atmosphere was absolutely electric and fitting for the memory of Welles Crowther. The moment the Crowther family stepped onto the field was chilling and truly set the tone for Red Bandana Games to come.
The Eagles had not beaten a team in the Top 25 since 2008 [and have yet to beat one since @Cincinnati]. Steve Addazio in his second year on the job was taking on Steve Sarkisian in his first year at USC.
Tyler Murphy was undoubtedly the star of the show. 191 yards on the ground, including a 66-yard game sealing touchdown sprint, was the start of a magical year. Only five passes were completed and no player had more than one catch for the Eagles. On the other side, the Eagle defense held USC to 0.7 yards rushing. You read that correctly. The added 16 tackles for loss and five sacks. They gave up some points to some real NFL talent on the other end, but Don Brown’s unit delivered.
The Eagles were down 10-0 early in the second quarter before things started going our way. Tyler Rouse opened up the scoring on a pitch to make it a four point game. A missed kick on the ensuing extra point would haunt the Eagles for years to come. BC put on a show that night with five touchdowns all on the ground, and delivered a legit field-storming moment we would remember for years to come. There are even those who still claim to see the occasional “We beat USC” post on YikYak to this day.
This game meant so much. After a quick turnaround season in Daz-year one, year two wasn’t off to the best start. A beatdown at the hands of Pittsburgh in the home opener, gave many pause and produced major doubt that BC could build on the success and prove year one wasn’t a fluke. The nationally televised game showed everyone the kind of atmosphere a 41,000+ strong Alumni Stadium was capable of producing. And beyond that, this moment transcended the game, and honored a true hero of our community. This game gave us a memory we shan’t forget.
Food for thought:
Did this game end up causing more harm than good? This was the biggest win of the entire Addazio-era and it happened so early on in his tenure. But did it give him years of goodwill that he otherwise wouldn’t have garnered? Was the win too good?
People forget, Chip Kelly was actually in attendance at this game on the BC sideline as well. While he and Ryan Day were already close, could this have been the final nail in the coffin for him leaving BC to follow Kelly to the professional Eagles? Oh what could have been.