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Wednesday WayBack, 1987: LSU 13, Ohio State 13

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How about a late 80s classic with a somewhat…unsatisfactory ending?

NOVEMBER 14, 1987: Nacho Albergamo #56 center of the Louisiana State University Tigers runs to make the block
NOVEMBER 14, 1987: Nacho Albergamo #56 center of the Louisiana State University Tigers runs to make the block
Louisiana State University/Getty Images

It's nearly time to end our little Wednesday temporal outings, what with fall practice underway and position previews ready to start. So in honor of opening the season with a Big 10 opponent, I thought I'd look back to the last time a member of the Leaders & Legends actually came to Tiger Stadium, way, way back in 1987.

In September of '87 yours truly was beginning kindergarten at St. Joan of Arc Elementary in my native LaPlace. Peter Gabriel's groundbreaking video for Sledgehammer was the hottest thing on MTV (which I wasn't allowed to watch at the time). Bruce Willis and Cybil Shepherd were steaming up network TV on Moonlighting. And LSU was off to a pretty hot start under brand-spanking-new head coach Mike Archer, ranked in the top-five, with a top-10 Ohio State Buckeye squad coming to town.

The Setting

  • LSU started off the year ranked sixth, but after topping No. 15 Texas A&M and destroying Rice and Cal State-Fullerton had moved up two spots. Archer, the Tigers defensive coordinator the previous season, had taken over at the suggestion of LSU's former head coach, Bill Arnsparger, who left to take the athletic director position at Florida -- where a few years later he would hire Duke Head Coach Steve Spurrier, whom he talked LSU out of interviewing on his way out of town. The Tigers returned stud quarterback Tommy Hodson, who still shared time with Mickey Guidry (Ed. Note: !!!!!!!) and a loaded backfield of Harvey Williams, Eddie Fuller and Sammy Martin. The offensive line featured All-American center Joseph "Nacho" Albergamo and tackle Erik Andolsek. plus Wendell Davis at receiver and defensive stars like lineman Tommy Clapp (father of freshman offensive lineman Will), linebacker Eric Hill and safety Greg Jackson. 

  • The Bucks had actually dropped from fifth to seventh after closish wins over West Virginia and Oregon. Ohio State was coached by Woody Hayes protégé Earl Bruce and featured the Big 10 ideal of a quarterback in Tom Tupa, who was also the team's punter and later had a very long NFL career doing that very thing. On defense, there was All-American linebacker Chris Spielman.

The Game


(Ed. Note: Highlights here, full game below.)

  • Thirty years later, the CBS college football theme music still holds up! Fun fact: I once sought out and downloaded it on Napster circa 2000 or so. 

  • No "you are looking live!" but no mistaking the dulcet tones of the man himself, Brent Musberger. He'll be covering the marquee SEC Network games this fall too!

  • DAT ENDZONE FONT.

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  • Little prologue to this game -- Andolsek and Spielman would be involved in a pregame scuffle. They would both later be drafted by the Detroit Lions, and become good friends. Upon Andolsek's untimely death in a tragic car accident, it was Spielman who, in fact, eulogized him.

  • Nice scramble drill by Hodson to find Rogie Magee. The duo make it look too easy on a slant two plays later for a 24-yard score.

  • But Ohio State responded with a 14-play, 60-yard drive that took up most of the first quarter. That big sack from Hill helped hold them to a field goal.

  • Kinchen brother sighting! Hodson finds Brian down the seam, who had a long career as a deep snapper in the NFL. The drive would pick up another three for LSU as the second quarter began.

  • Pretty obvious missed fumble there. Even modern SEC replay officials would get that one right.

  • Both offenses ground to a halt in the third quarter. Ohio State picked up another field goal, and right there at the start of the fourth, Guidry threw a pick right to the Buckeyes' Michael McCray. And with the ball deep in LSU territory, Ohio State drove 10 plays to take the lead 13-10.

  • Hodson quickly engineered a game-tying drive, and after a three-and-out, drove the Tigers down inside the 10 once again. But with just over two minutes to go, he back-footed an out pattern and Ohio State's Greg Rogan picked it off.

  • Rogan would pick off Hodson one more time near midfield to give Ohio State a shot at a final field goal, but it was off the mark and this one ended in a 13-13 tie.
The full telecast of this game is available from Youtube below in 2 parts