15 Greatest Games in Southern Miss Football History
|September 2, 1989: Southern Miss 30, Florida State 26 - Eagles win matchup in Jacksonville|
The Golden Eagles first contest of the 1989 campaign was a Sept. 2 "home" game at the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla., against No. 6 Florida State. The contest had originally been scheduled for Hattiesburg, but the city of Jacksonville offered USM $500,000 for the privilege of hosting the season opener, which was televised nationwide by the Atlanta-based Superstation TBS. The Seminoles seized a quick 10-0 lead and appeared poised to bury the Eagles, but Southern Miss scored on a 22-yard field goal from Chuck Davis with 17 seconds to go in the first quarter and added touchdowns on a 3-yard run by tailback Eddie Ray Jackson and a four-yard pass from quarterback Brett Favre to wide receiver Alfred Williams to lead 17-10 after two periods. With just under seven minutes left in the game, FSU led 26-24, but the Golden Eagles responded with a 13-play drive that culminated in a 2-yard scoring pass from Favre to tight end Anthony Harris with 23 seconds left that gave Southern Miss the 30-26 win. Longtime USM sports information director Ace Cleveland said after the game that he considered the win the biggest in school history. "I think the ramifications of this one could make it the best. It could lead to more television appearances, more financial gain, and more exposure for our athletes." The season opening win over No. 6 Florida State will always be remembered as one of the greatest Games in Southern Miss Football.