The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Five scintillating SEC OT football games to remember

12 days ago
SEC Network
Photo: AP Photo/David J. Phillip

Nothing quite gets the Southeastern Conference football fan revved up as much as a thrilling overtime game. In the last five years, there have been several worthy of remembering for a lifetime. Here are our top five from the last five seasons.

5. Arkansas 41, No. 15 TCU 38 (2 OTs)

Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen was at the heart of this wild upset win for the Razorbacks on Sept. 10, 2016. His 5-yard TD run in the second OT sealed it and was exciting enough after it appeared he had been stopped at the 2-yard line, only to bull his way in with the help of a shove from behind by his offensive line. But that wasn't the most memorable sequence of plays as Arkansas snapped a 14-game TCU home winning streak, at the time the third-longest in the nation. Nope, that came with 1:03 remaining in regulation when Allen threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to receiver Keon Hatcher -- and then promptly switched places with Hatcher to catch a game-tying 2-point conversion pass from the receiver. "We wanted to keep you in your seats for four quarters and then some," Arkansas coach Bret Bielema told reporters afterward, flashing a grin. "For college football, this is everything you could ask for."

4. South Carolina 20, No. 3 Georgia 17 (2 OTs)

Coming into the game on Oct. 12, 2019, quarterback Jake Fromm had not thrown a single interception while leading Georgia to a 5-0 start to the season. South Carolina ramped up the defensive pressure and forced the Bulldogs' usually steady QB into four turnovers on three picks and a lost fumble. Sophomore defensive back Israel Mukuamu was on the receiving end of all three of Fromm's interceptions, returning the first of them 53 yards for a touchdown and setting the tone for the upset-minded Gamecocks. Mukuamu's final interception came on the second play of the first overtime, but place-kicker Parker White's miss on a subsequent 33-yard field-goal attempt kept the game going. White atoned for it in the second OT when he split the uprights on a 23-yard attempt. When Georgia's Rodrigo Blankenship then missed wide left on a 42-yarder, South Carolina secured its first win over a top 25 opponent in five years.

3. No. 3 Georgia 54, No. 2 Oklahoma 48 (2 OTs)

Georgia senior tailback Sony Michel burst through the line for a game-winning 27-yard touchdown run in the second OT to secure the No. 3 Bulldogs a spot in the National Championship game in January of 2018, atoning for a fumble earlier that had threatened to mar his otherwise stellar performance. Instead, Michel's fumble in the fourth quarter that allowed Oklahoma to tie the game in regulation is largely forgotten. But the game-clinching run for his third touchdown on a night when he ran for 181 yards on just 11 carries rendered him a hero. It was the first Rose Bowl game in history to go into overtime, and also its highest-scoring affair ever. Afterward, as he was mobbed by his jubilant teammates, Michel broke down in tears. "I made plays. I gave up plays. My team just had faith in me. That's what this team is all about," Michel then told reporters.

2. No. 22 Texas A&M 74, No. 7 LSU 72 (7 OTs)

This absolutely epic seven-overtime battle between the Aggies and Tigers on Nov. 25, 2018 ended in fittingly dramatic fashion when A&M receiver Kendrick Rogers, who had been on the sideline battling severe leg cramps, ran onto the field just in time to line up and then grab quarterback Kellen Mond's game-winning, 2-point conversion pass. Mond threw for six TDs and three 2-point conversions overall during the long, physically draining night. LSU quarterback Joe Burrow threw for three touchdowns and ran for three more, but in the end it wasn't enough. The game lasted nearly five hours and the 146 combined points were the most in an FBS game in NCAA history. "I lost track of overtimes. ... It is the craziest game ever," Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said afterward. Rogers told reporters that even as he battled his leg cramps on the sideline, he never doubted that he would get back on the field for what turned out to be the game-clinching play. "These are moments you live for, so no matter what's going on with your body you want to be out there," he said.

1. No. 4 Alabama 26, No. 3 Georgia 23 (1 OT)

Just eight days removed from its double-overtime win over Oklahoma to reach the National Championship game, Georgia was taken into OT again by No. 4 Alabama on Jan. 9, 2018. This time, the Crimson Tide prevailed when freshman quarterback Tua Tagovailoa came off the bench to spark a comeback and ultimately threw a 41-yard touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith for the game winner. Tagovailoa got the call from Alabama coach Nick Saban to replace the struggling Jalen Hurts at halftime, and threw for three second-half TDs to secure a fifth national title under Saban since 2009. Georgia led 13-0 at the half and Alabama still trailed 20-7 after Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm, then only a freshman himself, hit Mecole Hardman for an 80-yard touchdown in the third quarter. Then Tagovailoa, a five-star recruit from Hawaii, started to take over. At one point, facing a fourth-and-goal from the 7-yard line, still down seven points, the left-handed QB moved deftly to his left and zipped a pass through traffic that hit Calvin Ridley right on the numbers for the tying score that ultimately forced overtime. "I don't know how Coach Saban found me all the way in Hawaii from Alabama," Tagovailoa said after the game. "Thank God he found me and we're here right now."