31 years. You’ve no doubt heard about that this week.
On this date 31 years ago Indiana claimed its most recent win in a bowl game, and the Hoosiers did it in impressive fashion.
In a game played on New Year’s Eve at Arizona Stadium in Tucson, Indiana dominated a once 5-0 and No. 8 ranked Baylor team in the Copper Bowl, 24-0.
In front of 35,751 fans and airing on TBS, IU got off to a fast start and jumped to a 17-0 halftime lead. The Hoosiers were never threatened on their way to winning their second bowl game in four years under head coach Bill Mallory.
Indiana quarterback Trent Green got things started for IU when he plunged in for a 1-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. IU would increase its lead one quarter later when kicker Scott Bonnell connected on a 27-yard field goal attempt.
All-American running back Vaughn Dunbar scored on a 5-yard touchdown run to give the Hoosiers their halftime advantage.
Baylor reached Indiana’s 2-yard line in the third quarter. But a muffed handoff resulted in a fumble that was recovered in the end zone by free safety Damon Watts. It was one of four fumbles by Baylor, but the only one they lost. Indiana also had an interception as its stifling defense caused the Bears to complete just 10 of 27 passes on the evening.
Dunbar won the Most Valuable Player honors on offense. He rushed 28 times for 106 yards and the score. Green scored a second rushing touchdown in the second half and finished the day 11-of-21 for 165 yards through the air.
Linebacker and former IU assistant coach Mark Hagen (11 tackles, including 2 tackles for loss, and 1 pass broken up) was the game’s defensive MVP.
Indiana finished the season with a 7-4-1 record.
The Copper Bowl is now known as the Guaranteed Rate Bowl.
Video credit – Galen Clavio
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