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The Greatest Championship Games in College Football History

Though college football has only recently created an official national championship game, there have been great "unofficial" national title tilts for decades. In this section, we look at some of the best championship games in college football history -- official or otherwise.

1987 Fiesta Bowl: Miami vs. Penn State
Nobody gave No. 2 Penn State any chance of beating the No. 1-ranked, high-flying, fast-talking Miami Hurricanes. But behind a great defensive effort, the Nittany Lions did just that, delivering Joe Paterno his second national championship.

2006 Rose Bowl: USC vs. Texas
Texas quarterback Vince Young carried his underdog Longhorns to an upset of the No. 1 USC Trojans in one of the greatest Rose Bowls ever played.

2003 Fiesta Bowl: Miami vs. Ohio State
Ohio State was supposed to be completely over-matched by the talent-laden Miami Hurricanes. But in one of college football's biggest upsets, the Buckeyes scratched, clawed and hit their way to a stunning 31-24 double-overtime win.

1983 Orange Bowl: Nebraska vs. Miami
Nebraska coach Tom Osborne could have played for a tie. And if he had done so, he likely would have walked away with a national title. Instead, the legendary Cornhuskers coach went for a two-point conversion, and the win, against a rising Miami team. The result was one of the most famous plays, and most dramatic moments, in college football history.

2000 Sugar Bowl: Florida State vs. Virginia Tech
Standing between Florida State coach Bobby Bowden and his second national championship were the upstart Virginia Tech Hokies, led by an otherworldly quarterback by the name of Michael Vick. In the end, though, the Seminoles were just too fast, and too strong, for even Vick to overcome.

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