Sunday, November 17, 2013

Seventh Heaven

Boise State consistently shows up in the all-time Top 10 in several football categories, but Boise State's run of success has lasted scarcely over a decade.  This list showing consecutive seasons with seven or more victories requires more consistency.  The teams that make this list are generally the landmark teams, the giants of college football.  Boise State has been a great 15-year phenomenon, and has been doing this for a very short time compared to the Michigan's, the Ohio State's, the Alabama's.  But to land in the Top 25 is still impressive.

For the Broncos to truly get respect, however, they will need to stay consistent for at least another decade.  Given that they land near the top in about every other category, if the Broncos can reach the Top 10 in this list, most will feel at that time that they belong.  There will of course be a scattering of skeptics.  But you can't please everyone...

Nebraska put together the most amazing run in the history of football by winning seven or more games every year from 1969 to 2003, an incredible streak of 35 straight seasons. That all came to a crashing halt when the Cornhuskers finished 2004 by winning just five of 11 games.

Florida State has compiled a streak of 32 straight seasons that is still current. The Seminoles have won seven or more games every year since 1982. Michigan had a great recent streak of 23 years that ended in 2008 when the Wolverines were 3-9. Florida’s streak of 25 consecutive seasons that began in 1988 is still current but in jeopardy. Oklahoma put together a streak of 22 straight seasons; the Sooners were highly consistent from 1970 to 1991.  Coach Frank Beamer has guided Virginia Tech to seven or more wins every season since 1993, giving the Hokies 21 consecutive seasons.

BYU, Michigan, Notre Dame, Penn State and Miami of Florida each achieved the feat 17 straight seasons, with the Cougars winning seven or more from 1976-1992, the Wolverines winning seven or more from 1968 to 1983, the Fighting Irish recording the feat in the years 1964-1980, the Nittany Lions putting together seasons of seven or more wins from 1967 to 1983 and the Hurricanes doing it from 1980 to 1996. Tennessee’s streak of 16 straight seasons (1989-2004) ended when the Volunteers went 5-6 in 2005. 

Ohio State’s best streak came between the years of 1972 and 1986, when the Buckeyes ran through 15 consecutive seasons of seven or more wins. Oklahoma's current run from 2002-2013 has matched Boise State for 15 straight seasons.  The Sooners also put together a run of 14 straight years from 1946 to 1959, the 20th best streak of all-time. LSU started their current run a year after Boise State and Oklahoma and the Tigers now stand at 14 straight years.  Virginia racked up seven or more wins from 1987-1999, 13 consecutive seasons. Alabama put together streaks of 13 (1971-1983), 12 (1985-1996) and 10 (1959-1968). 

Mississippi won seven or more from 1952 to 1963, a streak of 12 seasons, matched by Notre Dame’s run from 1938 to 1949 and more recently by Boston College's streak from 1999-2010.  Another streak of 12 consecutive seven-win seasons ended in 2010 for Texas when the Longhorns were 5-7.  USC has now set a school record with 12 consecutive seasons of seven or more wins (2002-13) and Wisconsin matches USC with their run from 2002-2013.  Washington’s most successful years came from 1977-1987 when they too won seven or more games in eleven straight seasons. Texas A & M matched the Huskies’ streak from 1985 to 1995. Arizona State enjoyed ten consecutive seasons of seven or more wins from 1955-1964. Alabama (1959-1968), USC (1924-1993), Colorado (1987-1996),Colorado State (1994-2003), Ohio State (1989-1998), Pittsburgh (1974-1983) and Duke (1932-1941) also had ten seasons of seven or more wins. 

Yale dominated football in the 19th century and the first part of the 20th century, winning seven or more games for 28 straight seasons (1882-1909). Princeton strung 27 such years together (1881-1907) and Pennsylvania (1888-1912) and Harvard (1886-1910) both had 25 consecutive seasons in roughly the same time period. Carlisle, which featured running back Jim Thorpe, won seven or more games from 1902-1913, a streak of twelve seasons.

The top streaks in the history of college football are featured below. 

Consecutive Seasons of Seven or More Wins:
1.  Nebraska…35 (1969-2003)
2.  Florida State…32 (1982-2013)
3.  Yale…28 (1882-1909)
4.  Princeton…27 (1881-1907)
5.  Harvard…25 (1886-1910)
5.  Florida…25 (1988-2012)
7.  Pennsylvania…25 (1888-1912)
8.  Michigan…23 (1985-2007)
9.  Oklahoma…22 (1970-1991)
10.  Virginia Tech…21 (1993-2013)
11.  BYU...17 (1976-1992)
11.  Miami of Florida…17 (1980-1996)
11.  Notre Dame…17 (1964-1980)
11.  Penn State…17 (1967-1983)
15.  Michigan…16 (1968-1983)
15.  Tennessee…16 (1989-2004)
17.  Ohio State…15 (1972-1986)
17.  Boise State…15 (1999-2013)
17.  Oklahoma…..15 1999-2013 
20.  Oklahoma…14 (1946-1959)
20.  LSU...14 (2000-2013)
22.  Alabama…13 (1971-1983)
22.  Georgia…13 (1997-2009)
22.  Georgia Tech…13 (1997-2009)
22.  Virginia…13 (1987-1999)
26.  Alabama…12 (1985-1996)
26.  Boston College…12 (1999-2010) 
26.  Carlisle…12 (1902-1913)
26.  Mississippi…12 (1952-1963)
26.  Notre Dame…12 (1938-1949)
26.  Texas…12 (1998-2009)
26.  USC...12 (2002-2013)
26.  Wisconsin...12 (2002-2013)

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