Comments about ‘'It all came together': 30 years later, BYU players reflect on winning the 1984 national championship’

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Published: Saturday, July 26 2014 6:55 p.m. MDT

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River Coug
Fort Mohave, AZ

So, for those of you not keeping score at home, through 18 posts, Ute fans had posted 10 times on a BYU article, Cougar fans had posted 5 times, and 3 others seem to have other loyalties. Tomahawk Red suggests that Go Red's comments have riled the Cougar faithful. Might I suggest that the fan base that has commented twice as much is the one that is the most riled. Might I also suggest that, since the two aforementioned posters have commented as much as all BYU fans combined, they are the most riled of all.
I'll end with a rhetorical question, do you always pay so much attention to, and place such emphasis on, things that you deem completely irrelevant? You say you don't care, but you care enough to read and comment on a BYU article--not just once, but multiple times. To quote the Bard, "The lady doth protest too much."


@Tomahawk Red


1 National Championship
23 Conference Titles
51 All Americans (13 Consensus All-Americans)
1 Heisman Trophy winner
4 Davey O'Brien Awards
7 Sammy Baugh Trophy Winners
1 Doak Walker Trophy Winner
1 Jim Brown Trophy winner
2 Outland Trophy winners
And LaVell Edwards received the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award in 1979,[12] the AFCA (Kodak) Coach of the Year Award in 1984, and the Amos Alonzo Stagg Award (career achievement) in2003.
32 Bowl appearances
Six player College Football Hall of Fame and LaVell Edwards was inducted as a coach in 2004.

In 1996 BYU became the first school to play 15 games in its season, going 14-1.


17 Bowl games going back to 1939
1 College Football Hall of Fame (no players just a coach)
0 National awards

It's hard to find more info because there isn’t a lot of really big achievements the UoU has accomplished outside of their two undefeated seasons and their win streak over BYU. Other than that? Not really anything one can point to and say the Utes have accomplished twice as much as BYU.


Tomahawk Red, it's funny how you have to resort un-provable hypothetical scenarios to even have any kind of foundation to support your poorly conceived arguments as to Utah's superiority over BYU.

"If Utah's 2004/2008 accomplishments had happened in 1984, they would have won the NC on each occasion.

If BYU's 1984 season happened in 2004/2008, it would have resulted in a BCS bowl... but NOT a NC."

Speculation of a desperate fan whose only form of relief of their anxiety of supporting a now perennial doormat and loser, whose recruits are abandoning their scholarships to pursue playing opportunities with teams that have a higher chance of playing on a bowl bound team and playing in front of millions more viewers than the Utes.

Anyone... ANYONE, regardless of whether you're a fan of BYU or Utah, who denies that is in denial of the facts.

Orem, UT


"Any unbiased and knowledgeable follower of football knows that it was mostly a fluke."

Any unbiased and knowledgeable follower of college football knows that five Top 12 finishes in six seasons, 6 straight conference championships, a 66-9 overall record (88%), back-to-back Top 7 finishes in both the AP and Coaches polls, and a 24-game winning streak that culminated in BYU being selected consensus 1984 major college football national champion by all five major selecting organizations of the day, was anything but a fluke.

The truth is, BYU accomplished far more in the short stretch of time from 1979 to 1984, than the Utes have accomplished in their entire football history.

Salt Lake City, Utah


It's laughable the little half truths you like to claim support your crimson-colored view of reality.

While a few sportswriters and coaches disagreed with BYU's selection as 1984 national champions, the vast majority disagreed with the dissenters and selected BYU #1.

When asked immediately after the game if BYU deserved to be #1, Bosco replied emphatically, YES!

His statement 30 years after the fact is just his personal opinion and doesn't prove anything.

As far as BCS and AP go, you're mixing apples and oranges. The AP has absolutely nothing to do with the BCS; in fact, the AP won't even allow the BCS to use their poll. In 2003, the AP completely ignored the teams that competed in the BCS championship game, and chose USC as their national champion, proof positive, that it wasn't the BCS that prevented Utah from winning a championship in 2008, it was Utah not being good enough to earn enough support from the majority of AP sportswriters.

The lone SI sportswriter you quoted was even in grade school in 1984, yet you're trying to claim that his analysis is more valid than all of the sportswriters of the day.


Rose Bowl call yet?
Salt Lake City, UT


LOL at a supposed Florida State fan, spamming a BYU blog, in support of the Utes.

Who do you think you're fooling?

Shreveport, LA

nonceleb: Thanks for trying to be even-handed in your assessment. However, a couple of your statements deserve comment: "Any unbiased and knowledgeable follower of football knows that it was mostly a fluke."
Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that 1984 was a perfect storm of circumstances that allowed BYU to be voted National Champions. That's not quite the same as a fluke. As the article title indicates, the circumstances all came together in 1984 for BYU.

You also said, "BYU finally just barely beat unrated 6-5 Michigan 17-10."
Well, first of all you got the score wrong. BYU won 24-17. Secondly, a one-touchdown victory does not necessarily qualify as "barely" beating a team. A look at the stats for the game reveal something very different.

BYU had 32 first downs to Michigan's 13. BYU had 112 yards rushing to 120 yards rushing for Michigan. BYU had 371 yards passing (35 completions, 49 attempts, 3 interceptions) to Michigan's Michigan's 82 yards (7 completions. 15 attempts, one interception). Average gain per play: BYU 6.36, Michigan 3.16. I could go into greater detail, but I hope the point is clear. The stats suggest that BYU did more than just "barely" beat Michigan.

What To Do
Salt Lake City, UT

Really, we have to go back to 1984 again!

This is irresponsible reporting, it is nothing but pot stirring can't the Deseret News find something of value to report on or is journalism dead. come on people lets get real that was 30 years ago! Both teams are so different now, and have done so much since then that is just silly to keep stirring to create controversy.

Mission Viejo, CA

Unlike most of the posters, I remember 1984 very well. I was living in Omaha and the Huskers were in the hunt, but lost a game. Oklahoma lost a game. Washington beat Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl for #2. Washington and others refused to come to the Holiday Bowl to play BYU.

Somebody beat everybody but BYU in 1984. Nobody beat anybody who beat BYU.

Utah's two years of greatness were fun and I rooted for them in their bowl games. But lets face it, Pitt was a no better foe than was Michigan. And Alabama had lost a player or two and went into their bowl game flat. That being said, those where the pinnacles of UU history, and good for them.

So while U bag on BYU successes, remember that Utah played in the same conference all those years. If Utah is so great, why didn't they beat BYU and gain a share of BYU's glory?

As for today, Utah got one line in Plaschke's LA Times' PAC12 roundup. Something like"Utah's Whittingham is finding it difficult to win in the Pac12." They also mentioned that UCLA had upgraded their schedule by scheduling two with BYU.

IA Cougar
West Des Moines, IA

I have respect for the bulk of Utah fans, their team and coach. I detest those who do nothing but camp out to post anything negative they can about BYU. Living in sarcasm and put downs is a miserable life. I also detest BYU fans who have to show their lack of class by disrespecting Utah. Those people are not worth the read and do nothing but stir up juvenile hate that the bulk of fans on both sides do not agree with.

I wish Utah well this year. The majority of a Utah fans wish that the BYU v Utah game would be on the calendar late in the year..every year. Most share the view that both schools would be better served in the same conference. Unfortunately, money has taken over the game and it will never be the same. It's sad and it is destroying college football.

I truly wish that civility could be shown better on these boards. But I know better. There is anonymity and that leads to classless drivel. For the rest of us..good luck Utah, BYU, Utah State and Weber State. Represent!

East Salt Lake City, Utah


Shameful is your inability to comprehend what the SI author and Robbie Bosco are saying.

They're not mocking the 1984 title. They're stating a fact that the 1984 team would not have even sniffed a national championship in the current era. Just like Utah (2004, 2008) and TCU (2009, 2010).

East Salt Lake City, Utah

Utah's two years of greatness were fun and I rooted for them in their bowl games. But lets face it, Pitt was a no better foe than was Michigan. And Alabama had lost a player or two and went into their bowl game flat.


So did Organ State who also lost a player or two going into their Vegas bowl come out flat? Remember that's BYU's biggest bowl win since 1996.

Pitt was ranked AP #19, finished #25 just like your 2001 and 2008 teams, Michigan was 6-6.

Utah beat 4 ranked teams in 2008. BYU hasn't beat 4 ranked teams in over 18 years (2006 #21 TCU, 2009 #18 Utah, and 2012 #18 Utah State).

Try your spin again.

East Salt Lake City, Utah

Try searching for: "Fixing the Final 1984 AP College Football Poll".

"In the lamest and least-watched "national championship" bowl game of all time, 13-0 Brigham Young rallied to beat 6-6 Michigan 24-17...

Texas Christian, Boise State, and Utah have been tearing it up over the last decade, but in 1984 Brigham Young did something none of those other "Little Big" teams have even gotten a legitimate shot at: they finished #1. Unfortunately, BYU '84 differs from those other teams in another way too: they did not play a single ranked opponent. The only so-called "national champion" that didn't (though Oklahoma came very close in 1956).

BYU's 1984 opponents went 61-85-3, placing their schedule 96th amongst 98 division 1A schools. And yet their performance was as weak as their schedule. They won five games by a touchdown or less, from a 20-14 win at 3-7-1 Pitt in their opener to a 24-17 win against 6-6 Michigan in the Holiday Bowl-- by far the worst bowl opponent ever faced by a so-called "national champion."

Provo, UT

I've golfed with Robbie a number of times, and he is under no delusions about the weight of the 1984 "National Championship". He and many others in the Varsity Club agree that "we got very, very lucky" in 1984. It isn't something we go around pounding our chests about.

BYU has looked better on paper and in the stats than we have on the field for many years. But real football is played in the grass and the mud and the sweat and the blood, and padding our schedules with cake-walks for decades was beyond the control of the players and most of the coaches. But players and coaches know full well the differences between programs where it really matters.

Not only a little, but a great deal of humility is in order whenever the 1984 "Championship" comes up. Anyone who says otherwise would enjoy fantasy football more than real football, and has more armchair lint under their arms than real turf in their cleats.

For what it's worth, go Cougs! But let's be realistic.

Salt Lake City, UT


"They're stating a fact that the 1984 team would not have even sniffed a national championship in the current era. Just like Utah (2004, 2008) and TCU (2009, 2010)."

A personal opinion is NOT a fact, no matter how desperately you want it to be.

Jealous U
Alpine, UT


"Try searching for: "Fixing the Final 1984 AP College Football Poll".

What makes U think that the opinion of ONE sportswriter (who was still in grade school at the time), carries more weight than the 38 sportswriters who evaluated every viable 1984 national championship contender and after over a month of careful scrutiny still chose BYU as the MOST DESERVING team to be selected 1984 National Champion?

It is fun seeing the angst this subject constantly creates in our little brothers on the hill knowing that Utah's best was only a distant second best, in one poll, while BYU's best resulted in a consensus national championship as selected by all five major selecting organizations of the day.

As far as Crystal Football National Championship Trophies go, the closest the Utes will ever get to one is the trophy proudly displayed 45 miles away in BYU's Legacy Hall of Fame.

Salt Lake City, Utah


Try searching for: "Doc Five: College football’s best Cinderella stories – No. 1, 1984 BYU wins national title"

You'll notice that the author mentions, "Despite some critics, BYU was selected as the consensus national champion"

Not one word about being "undeserving", in fact, the author specifically mentions that BYU was selected consensus national champion - in other words, all of the major selecting organizations chose BYU as their national champion.

The author concludes, "As for now, it's safe to wonder if there will ever be another Cinderella story in college football like 1984 BYU."

BYU 1984: Cinderella - YES; Lucky - YES; Perfect Storm - YES; Deserved - ABSOLUTELY!

BYU was the only undefeated team in 1984, and, BYU had developed enough national cachet in the five years preceding 1984 to prove that BYU's undefeated season wasn't just a fluke.

btw, Utah over Alabama was No. 5 on the list - not the 2008 season, just the game.

Lincoln Park, IL

I don't understand why it's so hard for some to accept that a team that finished undefeated and ranked #1 in both the AP and Coaches final regular season polls would have been a virtual lock to be selected to play in the national championship game, IF one had existed in 1984.

BYU was the only undefeated team; Washington lost at USC(9-3) 7-16; Oklahoma(9-2-1) lost at Kansas(5-6) 11-28; Nebraska(10-2) lost at Syracuse(6-5) 9-17; and Florida(9-1-1) lost to Miami(8-5) 20-32, and was ineligible to play in a bowl.

btw, that "horrible" Michigan team that jealous Utah fans like to rag on, beat Miami 22-14 and narrowly lost to Washington 11-20.

Fans like Uteology who spout "statistics" in vacuum and cite "quotes" out of context, without even considering the actual circumstances of 1984 are just blowing jealous crimson-colored smoke.

Regardless of schedules, it's very clear to see that there's not a single 1984 contender who would have been more deserving of being included in a "bcs championship" type game, than BYU.

Salt Lake City, UT


Here is an excert from an article quoting one of those coaches that you mentioned.

All of that considered, the thing that amazes UCLA Coach Terry Donahue is that some folks still shrug off BYU as a second-class power.

Donahue nods knowingly. "I think you have to play BYU to appreciate them," he said. "I have a much greater appreciation for BYU as a football team since we played them (and lost, 37-35, at the Rose Bowl two years ago). Prior to that game, I might have fallen victim to that attitude, to thinking that, yeah, BYU might be able to throw like that against--whoever--but not against UCLA.

"Vince Dooley (coach at Georgia) felt the same way after his team, with Herschel Walker, won in the last seconds. He, also, thought, 'Who were those guys?' At least that's what I heard through the grapevine. He went through the same thing.

"After you play them, you realize that they are a dominant team, physically. They are big and strong."

Source: Los Angeles Times - September 7, 1985

Farmington, UT

Well, one thing is for sure...BYU has the Trophy and the Title and no one can take that away from them. The ute partisans can argue all day long about a weak schedule, a weak opponent in Michigan, and any other factor that they want to quote but the fact remains that BYU was the ONLY undefeated team in the country and they won the championship.

It's now 2014 and BYU still has the trophy. They still defeated every opponent in 1984, which no one else did. Utah got robbed by not playing Auburn for the title on of their undefeated years, but they need to understand that the utes were NOT the only undefeated team that year. That's how the mighty BCS system worked. In fact, recently even a team with a loss played for the national championship in that system.

My questions: Why didn't Utah rise to the occasion and win a championship in 1984 if it was so easy? In fact, BYU had won 8 conference titles in a row? When has Utah even approached that in their previous WAC and MWC experience? 54-10 and 9 of 12 don't say that BYU wasn't deserving in 1984. Live with it!

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