One of the most celebrated plays in college football history highlighted the Owls' fourth straight bowl victory, a 28-6 triumph over Alabama at the 1954 Cotton Bowl.
Facing an Alabama team led by future NFL legend Bart Starr, the Owls fell behind early as the Tide drove to take a 6-0 lead after one quarter on a short plunge by fullback Tommy Lewis. The 6-0 first quarter lead would be the last moments that Bama fans would have to smile on this day.
Rice junior Dickey Maegle answered Lewis' score with a 79-yard scoring run early in the second and with the PAT, Rice held a 7-6 lead. On Rice's next possession, the two players who had scored in the game would become forever linked in history.
Taking a handoff from quarterback Leroy Fenstemaker, Dicky Maegle took off around right end. A block by Blois Bridges allowed Maegle to turn the corner. Mac Taylor flattened another `Bama defender while Gordon Kellogg took out the last man (Starr). Maegle seemed to be long gone on his way to his second touchdown of the game.
As Maegle approached midfield, Lewis jumped off the Bama bench, stepped around a couple teammates, then threw a body block into Maegle's legs at the Crimson Tide 42-yard line. Moments later, referee Cliff Shaw awarded Maegle and the Owls a 95-yard touchdown, the longest run in Cotton Bowl history.
Long after other details of the game faded into the general history of the game, the tackle of Maegle by Lewis remains an iconic moment, recognized yet again by the Cotton Bowl during its 75th Anniversary Celebration.
Maegle added a 34 yard touchdown in the third quarter en route to 265 rushing yards on only 11 carries, an unbelievable average of 24.1 yards per attempt which remains the NCAA record for bowl games.
Rice finished the season with a 9-2 record, ranked sixth in both the final AP and UPI
Owls Welcome 17 Players in the Class of 2017
02/01/2017 - Rice head football coach David Bailiff announced Wednesday the names of 17 high school seniors who have signed National Letters of Intent to join...
Rice and Stanford Set for Opener Down Under
01/30/2017 - The Rice Owls will open their 2017 season facing the same opponent they met in the 2016 finale --but in a far more exotic locale--as Rice and...
C-USA Announces 2017 Football Schedules
01/26/2017 - Rice will open its 13th season of Conference USA football on the road in El Paso on September 9, kicking off an eight-game slate that will feature ...
Rice Scholar Athletes Honored
02/26/2017 - Rice Athletics and the R Association honored some of its best and brightest on Sunday evening as the 2017 Rice Scholar Athletes and Honor Athletes ...
Beschorner to Guide Owls QBs
01/25/2017 - Rice head football coach David Bailiff announced on Wednesday that he has hired former Division II All-America quarterback Wesley Beschorner as the...
Bailiff Announces New Defensive Staff Members
01/18/2017 - Brian Stewart, who has coordinated defenses at both the NFL and FBS levels, and Scott Vestal, who has coached defensive backs in both the Big 12...
McGuffie Wins First World Cup Gold
12/16/2016 - Former Rice standout Sam McGuffie opened his second season with the US Bobsled team in impressive fashion, teaming with three-time Olympic medalist...
Ellerbee, Martin and McGaskey Honored by Phil...
12/14/2016 - Linebacker Emmanuel Ellerbee, center Trey Martin and strong safety Tabari McGaskey have named by Phil Steele to his 2016 All-Conference USA squad. ...
- Top Videos /
- Online Store