3. 1985 Oklahoma football season
Final Record: 11-1 | Finish: National Champions (def. Penn State in Orange Bowl, 25-10)
Coming into the 1985 college football season, a highly touted player by the name of Troy Aikman — maybe you’ve heard of him — was supposed to be at the helm of the Sooners offense. Unfortunately, he broke his ankle against Miami in the fourth game of the season, a game that went down as a loss for the Sooners. Suffice it to say, however, that Barry Switzer and his team were able to recover from losing Aikman for the year (and forever as he would never suit up for Oklahoma again).
Jamelle Holieway took over for Aikman and was a savant at the helm of the offense with along with a host of weapons. Holieway rushed for 862 yards and nine touchdowns, Lydell Carr led the team with 883 yards and five scores and Leon Perry, Patrick Collins and Spencer Tillman all had five scores as well on the year. Throw in a defense that featured the great Brian Bosworth at the peak of his powers along with Tony Casillas and the Sooners were primed for big-time success.
Following the loss to Miami, Oklahoma ran through lesser competition with ease, never winning by fewer than 31 points over their next four games. They then faced No. 2 Nebraska but were dominant again in a 27-7 victory and then toppled rival Oklahoma State in the infamous Ice Bowl, 13-0. That set up a date with No. 1 Penn State in the Orange Bowl. But it was again light work for an all-time great team as they dominated on both sides of the ball in a 25-10 victory to capture the final title of Switzer’s illustrious career in Norman.