Best College Football 5 Year Stretches

For me, there’s a lot of fascination involving dominating football teams. There are teams that are dominating for a couple of years back to back, or there are some that are more consistent. One that comes to mind was the Florida State teams under Bobby Bowden during their Dynasty Period.  FSU Dynasty

Over any given 5 year period, who was the most dominating team of all time? Or, since my blog only goes back to 1967, since that time?

The answer is really easy.

That would be the Nebraska Cornhuskers from 1993 through 1997 when they had a 60-3 five year record and 3 national championships.

The Cornhuskers finished 11-1 in 1993 and lost to Florida State in the Orange Bowl in the national title game. That was legendary Bobby Bowden’s first title.

The 1994 Cornhuskers were not to be denied, beating Miami 24-17 to finish their season at 13-0. As good as this team was, the 1995 version may have been even better. They just mauled everybody they played including Florida in the national championship game, 62-24.

They finished with another undefeated record at 12-0.

The following season was something of an off year for them. They had beaten Arizona State 77-28 in 1995. But, in one of the biggest turnarounds in football history the Sun Devils upset the Cornhuskers in 1996, 19-0.

The Huskers still had tremendous talent and bounced back to win the remaining games in their regular season. In the inaugural Big 12 Championship game, the huge underdog Texas Longhorns upset the Huskers to win the Big 12 title.

The 1996 Huskers finished 11-2, which most schools would love to experience.

The Corn Beasts took it personally and ran the table again in 1997. They finished their season at 13-0 and split the national title with the Michigan Wolverines.

60-3 over 5 seasons is the best I have ever seen since following the college football game.

The Oklahoma Sooners from 1971 through 1975 were also impressive. They won 54 games and only lost 3, with 1 tie. They didn’t lose a game through the 1973 and 1974 seasons, but they were also on probation. Chuck Fairbanks was the head coach in 1971 and 1972. Then, Barry Switzer took over for the 1973 season.

Some big name players during this period were the Selmon brothers Selmons 

and Quarterbacks Jack Mildren and Steve Davis. Running Backs like Greg Pruitt and Joe Washington ran wild.

Third place goes to the Miami Hurricanes from 1987 through 1991 when they finished with a rather nice 56-4 record. They also claimed 3 national championships with one in 1987, 1989 and 1991. Like Nebraska in 1997, the Hurricanes had to share a title with the Washington Huskies in 1991. 1991

Like the other Miami teams, this era was loaded with stars like Michael Irvin, Russell Maryland, the Bermuda Triangle LBs and so many more.

The Michigan Wolverines finished with a nice 50-4-1 record from 1970 through 1974 with no national titles and very little other fanfare to speak of.

The next best record over a 5 year period would belong to the Trojans of USC with a nice 59-6 finish. They shared a national title in 2003 with LSU and Nick Saban. But, they crushed the Oklahoma

Sooners in 2004 to win their own title.

They were called the greatest team ever in 2005, but they lost to the Texas Longhorns in one of the all time great games in the Rose Bowl.

Florida State during their dynasty period impressed with a 56-6 record in the 5 year period between 1996 and 2000. They went undefeated in 1999 and beat Michael Vick and Virginia Tech for the national title.

Some other very impressive runs:

Alabama: 2011 – 2015  62 – 7 Ole Nick Saban won a few national titles during this time.

1971 – 1975  54 – 6  Bear Bryant was best college coach in my life time.

1977 – 1981  53 – 6 – 1 Bear’s was finished after the 1982 season.

Arizona State: 1969 – 1973: 51 – 6 Frank Kush was maybe the best coach nobody has heard of.

Clemson: 1987 -1991 49 – 10 – 1 The Tigers of current times will beat this record soon.

Florida: 1993 – 1997  55 – 8 – 1 Steve Spurrier won the national title in 1996.

Florida State: 1991 – 1995 54 – 7 – 1 Bobby Bowden won his first title in 1993

LSU: 2003 – 2007  65-10  Nick Saban and Les Miles combined for national titles.

Miami: 2000 – 2004  55 – 7 Many people consider the 2001 Miami team the best of all time.

Nebraska 1969 – 1973  51-6-2 Bob Devaney coached before Tom Osborne.

SMU: 1980 – 1984  49 – 9 – 1 Pony Express which led to NCAA probation.

Texas: 2005 – 2009  58 – 8 Mack Brown won a national title and played for another.

1968 – 1972  48-6-1  Darrell Royal won 2 national titles and the start of Wishbone Offense.

USC: 1978 – 1982  48 – 9 The Trojans have had many great runs.

Penn State: 1968 – 1972 50-5 The Nittany Lions went 11-0 two years in a row and were denied titles.

Georgia: 1980 – 1984 50 -8-2 This was Georgia’s golden age. glory years

Colorado: 1992 – 1996  48-10-2 The Buffaloes were good.

Kansas State: 1996 – 2000 53-10  Bill Snyder is incredible.

Tennessee: 1995 – 1999  54-8  Vols won the national championship in 1998.

                  1968 – 1972  48-9-1  Dominating SEC days for the Vols.

Notre Dame: 1988 -1992  53-8-1 Lou Holtz

Ohio State: 1994 – 1998 52-11-1 John Cooper days.

2002 – 2006  55-9 National title for the Buckeyes.

2006 – 2010   56-9  Jim Tressel.

2011 – 2015   56- 11  This record would be better, but it includes bad season of 2011.

Oklahoma: 2000 – 2004  60 – 7  Bob Stoops early days.

Oregon: 2010 – 2014  60-8  The Ducks were a Field Goal away from a national title in 2010.

Texas A%M: 1991 – 1995  51-8-1  Back in the old SWC days

Toledo: 1968 – 1972  49-5-1  Chuck Ealey Quarterbacked 3 years without losing a game. QB

 

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