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“The Drive”, 20 Years Later: UCF 40, Alabama 38

Relive the drive that put UCF on the major college football map

Sporting News Archive
Ryan Schneider
Photo by Bob Leverone/Sporting News via Getty Images via Getty Images

20 years ago today, on October 28, 2000, the UCF Knights walked into Tuscaloosa to face the Alabama Crimson Tide, and walked out with a 40-38 win.

UCF is still undefeated against the Tide.

It was a back-and-forth affair, but after a late Alabama TD made it 38-37, QB Ryan Schneider completed seven of his eight passes on the last drive, marching the Knights down to the Bama 21, and Javier Beorlegui nailed a 39-yard field goal to win it.

Here in its grainy but exciting glory is that final drive:

If you’re a recent UCF fan or graduate, it’s hard to explain how truly monumental this win was. Even in the two years after Daunte Culpepper, the fact that then-tiny little UCF, with its D-IA Independent status (and budget), could walk into Alabama and beat the famed Crimson Tide was almost unthinkable. After years of heartbreaks and close calls with major conference teams, the Knights finally broke through.

A lot has changed since then, but one thing hasn’t: UCF is still 1-0 all-time against Alabama.