Friday, December 22, 2006

Rose Bowl Clutch Performer III

In previous posts, I have recognized the clutch Rose Bowl exploits of Tyrone Wheatley (1993) and Brian Griese (1998). Not all the clutch Rose Bowl game performances, however, have been on the offensive side of the ball. In 1989, it was John Milligan of the defense that made a clutch play that keyed the victory. Milligan was an inside linebacker in his junior year out of Trenton High School in Trenton, Michigan. The Wolverines had pulled ahead of USC 22-14 with under two minutes to go in the game but the Trojans had the ball and a chance to tie. USC QB Rodney Peete (that season's Heisman Trophy runner-up) drove the Trojans down the field for what looked like was going to be the tying score. However, Milligan intercepted a pass with fifty seconds remaining to give the Wolverines the win and Bo his second Rose Bowl victory. Incidentally, Milligan went on to become a team co-Captain in his senior season. Go Blue!

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