The year 1984 was one of high expectations for Boston College fans. The prior year the Eagles finished 9-3 and were ranked in the final poll for the first time since 1942. Led by senior Doug Flutie, the Eagles had an ambitious schedule that include visits to Alabama, West Virgina and defending national champion Miami.
After a come from behind win against #9 Alabama and trouncing North Carolina 52-20, the Eagles soared to #4 in the polls.
Two close losses to West Virginia and Penn State dropped the Eagles out of the top 10, but by the time they faced Miami they were 7-2 and ranked t0th.
Miami, which at one point had been ranked #1, came into the game 8-3 and ranked 12th. They were coming off their epic collapse against the University of Maryland in which the Terps came back froma 31-0 halftime deficit to win 42-40.
The game is an epic duel between Flutie and Miami quarterback Bernie Kosar. As described by ESPN,
Each team plays the entire 3-hour, 43-minutes marathon like a two-minute drill. There are 15 scoring drives, none less than 55 yards, five drives of 80 or more, and 1,273 yards produced by both teams combined.
Boston College pulled ahead 41-38 with only 3:50 remaining, but Kosar leads the Hurricanes back to score the go ahead touchdown with only 28 seconds remaining.
Flutie quickly connects on two passes to move the Eagles from the 20 to the Miami 48 yard-line. With only six seconds left, Flutie called “Flood Tip,” a play in which three receivers race downfield and flood an area in the end zone to either catch it or tip it to another receiver. The play had worked earlier in the season against Temple, with Flutie’s roommate Gerry Phelan making the catch then.
The rest, as they say, is history . . .
Flutie’s 472-yard passing performance made him the first NCAA player to amass 10,000 career passing yards. He would go on to win the Heisman Trophy.
Boston College would crush Houston in the Cotton Bowl (45-28) to finish #5 in the polls.