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FootballNostalgiaTop 30 at Jordan-Hare

Top 30 at Jordan-Hare: #10 Auburn 41, West Virginia 30

10. Auburn 41 vs. West Virginia 30 – Sept. 19, 2009

How I Remember It: Rain, rain, and more rain. As soon as I entered the stadium, the bottom fell out. That’s when things got really fun. Apparently, inside the stadium, they were sending all of the fans down to the concourse for concerns of lightning. However, all of the fans on the concourse were trying to make their way to their seats or hanging around until the rain stopped. This resulted in 60K fans being crammed into the concourse, with half trying to make it down, and half that didn’t know they couldn’t go up trying to go up. It was really fun. I had the good fortune of being smashed up against a West Virginian, who’s hair was slicked back with what I hope was water. He kept telling his 12-year old son to spread his legs and get a good base.

Of course, there was the 15-year old girl that had to fake passing out just to get attention, and every once in a while you’d get the guy who was hellbent on getting his girlfriend to their seats, until he was stopped by the angry mob. There were almost four fights, three deaths, and two births, and that was just in my little 20-foot area over a 45 minute span. So yeah, it was definitely way more safe down in the Concourse O’ Hell. Next time Auburn “staff” or whoever made the decision, I’ll take my chances in the lightning.

Now on to the game. It started out scary. West Virginia’s version of LSU’s Jamarcus Russell spun around eighty times and threw a long bomb early in the game to set up a touchdown. Then Noel Devine ran for like 85 yards on the next drive to put the ‘eers up 14-0.

However, the Auburn defense did their best impression of the 1994 Auburn vs. LSU defense, and intercepted West Virginia’s version of the Oakland Raider’s Jamarcus Russell around fifty times, giving Mario Fannin a chance to show us what we’re going to see all this season. It was a big comeback after a big rainstorm. It was awesome.

Note: I failed to mention the awesome students who stayed in their seats, probably just for fear of losing their spot, through the rain storm and gave this one of the most electric atmospheres of any game in 2009. I failed to mention this because I never saw it live being stuck down in the death trap.

What Really Happened: Both teams came in 2-0. Both teams were playing their toughest game so far. Both teams were still trying to figure out what they had to look forward to for the rest of the season.

Both teams also went through warm-ups and then realized they would have to go chill in the locker room until the storm passed. Once the officials gave the go-ahead, Chizik gave this pregame speech. It’s not to the Dye-level, but he’s getting there.

However, the speech didn’t work too well as the Moutaineers took a 14-point lead less than five minutes into the game. The two scores came on Noel Devine runs of 1 yard and 71 yards (not the 85 yards I remember).

The Tigers got on the scoreboard later in the quarter with a Wes Byrum field goal followed by a 16-yard touchdown pass from Chris Todd to Darvin Adams, but before Auburn fans got too comfortable, West Virginia scored another touchdown. The score at the end of the 1st quarter was 21-10. That’s a lot of points.

Auburn would do the only scoring in the 2nd quarter and it was in the exact same manner as the 1st: a Wes Byrum field goal followed by a touchdown pass from Todd to Adams. The Tigers had caught up by halftime, but the Mountaineers still lead 21-20.

West Virginia showed that they weren’t going away as Devine scored his third touchdown of the night halfway through the 3rd quarter. The ‘eers missed the extra point giving Auburn a chance to tie with a touchdown and successful PAT.

Auburn did just that with a 1-yard screen pass followed by an 81-yard run by Mario Fannin. Wes Byrum kicked the extra point to tie the game at 27-27.

West Virginia took the lead one last time with a field goal late in the quarter. It would be their last points of the game. Going into the 4th they lead 30-27.

Darvin Adams caught his third touchdown of the night halfway through the 4th quarter to give Auburn the lead 34-30. The Tigers would seal the win when Craig Stevens returned an interception for a touchdown.

Auburn ended a wild night with a 41-30 win. SEC…SEC…SEC!

Why did I pick this game? If you asked anybody that went to this game what their favorite game from 2009 was, they would probably say this one. The rain combined with the comeback made for one of the best games of the season, and one of the best in Jordan-Hare history. Avenging the previous year’s loss to the Mountaineers along with the whole SEC/Big East thing just added on to everything that made this one great.

Fun Facts: Both teams combined for 909 yards of total offense and 71 points. Auburn intercepted five West Virginia passes on the night.

Play of the Game: Mario Fannin’s 82-yard run after catch for a touchdown in the 3rd quarter tied the game, finalizing Auburn’s comeback from an early 14 point deficit.

Player of the Game: Chris Todd threw for 281 yards and four touchdowns. Pretty good.

Quote of the Game: “First of all, I would like to say that I wish I had 87,000 game balls because our fans were a huge reason we won that game and I went them to know that. We had thousands of students to stay here through that whole thing. Everybody came early and nobody left because of the weather, and I promise you that was one of the huge reasons we won the game and momentum swings happen because of our fans.” – Gene Chizik

Game Story: ESPN | Auburn Archives

Game Notes: Auburn Archives

Photo Gallery: Auburn Archives

Video Highlights: ESPN

AU HD Flashback – “The Rain Game”:

The rest of the Top 30:

11. Auburn 28 vs. Alabama 21 – Nov. 19, 2005

12. Auburn 10 vs. Florida 7 – Nov. 4, 1989

13. Auburn 28 vs. Tennessee 21 – Oct. 4, 2003

14. Georgia 56 vs. Auburn 49 – Nov. 16, 1996

15. Auburn 7 vs. LSU 3 – Sept. 16, 2006

16. Auburn 20 vs Florida State 17 – Oct. 20, 1990

17. Auburn 28 vs. Alabama 23 – Nov. 22, 2003

18. Auburn 29 vs. Georgia 26 – Nov. 11, 2000

19. Auburn 38 vs. Arkansas – Oct. 16, 2004

20. LSU 26 vs. Auburn 21 – Sept. 20, 2008

21. Georgia 19 vs. Auburn 14 – Nov. 13, 1982

22. Auburn 17 vs. Alabama 10 – Nov. 24, 2007

23. Auburn 33 vs. Ole Miss 20 – Oct. 31, 2009

24. Auburn 26 vs. Tennessee 26 – Sept. 29, 1990

25. Auburn 31 vs. LSU 7 – Oct. 26, 2002

26. Auburn 27 vs. Florida State 24 – Oct. 1, 1983

27. Ole Miss 24 vs. Auburn 20 – Nov. 8, 2003

28. Auburn 24 vs. Georgia 6 – Nov. 13, 2004

29. Auburn 55 vs. Pacific 0 – Sept. 9, 1989

30. Auburn 37 vs. Syracuse 34 – Sept. 28, 2002

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1 comment

Nick V. 07/19/2011 at 5:46 pm

AHH, the “Rain Game”. I was there. Didn’t move that whole delay and sat and absorbed 3.75 inches of rain. But it was worth it! Probably wanna of the most fun games I’ve been to. Not because of the rain, but because of all the fans that stayed and the atmosphere in the stands. And watching the AU Defense have takeaway after takeaway was nice also. War Eagle!


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