On This Date: SMU Beats Texas A&M 21-21

On this date in 1994, the Alamodome needed to pinch itself. A then-record 51,056 fans showed up for an SMU “home game” in the River City as the Ponies welcomed Texas A&M to the dome away from home. A&M was riding a 26 game SWC conference winning streak, were undefeated and ranked seventh in the country. The Aggies were also on probation from the pesky NCAA for paying players for summer jobs that weren’t actually jobs.

SMU, on the other hand, came into the October 30th game 1-7 in 1994, their one win came against Dennis Franchione’s New Mexico Lobos. Tom Rossley’s Mustangs weren’t world beaters by any stretch, they won eight games in his first three seasons, and eleven games total since the program's reboot in 1989.

The 25 point underdogs got hot early, causing two A&M turnovers that led to short fields and a 14-0 lead at the half. The halftime lead was SMU’s first time leading after two quarters on the season, and the first time A&M was shutout in a first half since 1989.

The Aggies stormed back with a Rodney Thomas touchdown run late in the third and touchdown reception early in the fourth to tie the game at 14. SMU quarterback Ramon Flanigan scored on a three-yard run to give the Ponies a 21-14 lead halfway through the fourth. The Aggies countered and tied the game with just under seven minutes to play.

Ben Crosland, SMU’s kicker, had a chance to win the game with a 43-yard field goal with just 28 seconds remaining but the kick sailed wide. The Aggies maneuvered into near field goal range where Kyle Bryant lined up a 67-yard attempt for the win, predictably, the kick wasn’t close and time expired with SMU breaking A&M’s 26 game conference winning streak.

SMU ended the 1994 season with a 1-9-1 record. Texas A&M finished the 1994 season with 10-0-1 record, nearly unblemished. Nearly. Because of A&M’s probation, the game wasn’t televised, so only the 51,000 plus in attendance witnessed one of the more bizarre results in SWC history.

On this Day…