Michigan State’s 10-10 tie against Notre Dame in 1966 is a relic, part of an era before overtime came to college football.
There’s something endearingly quaint about it, though. And while fans aren’t exactly clamoring for more ties, here are a few famous ones — across all sports — that earned their place in history:
SEPT. 23, 1908: CHICAGO CUBS 1, NEW YORK GIANTS 1
Yes, a crucial baseball game can end in a tie, especially if it descends into chaos. The Giants appeared to have won on a ninth-inning hit, and fans poured onto the field, but umpire Hank O’Day ruled that runner Fred Merkle — who started the play on first — hadn’t run to second as required. The run didn’t count, and the game ended in a tie. When it was replayed, the Cubs won, and they took the pennant by one game over New York.
NOV. 9, 1946: ARMY 0, NOTRE DAME 0
This was football, not soccer, and the scoreless draw was actually one of the most memorable games of its era. It featured four Heisman Trophy winners, and top-ranked Army was unable to break through against the second-ranked Irish at Yankee Stadium.
NOV. 23, 1968: HARVARD 29, YALE 29
The headline of Harvard’s student newspaper — “Harvard Beats Yale 29-29” — said it best. The Crimson erased a 29-13 deficit by scoring 16 points in the final 42 seconds.
NOV. 24, 1973: MICHIGAN 10, OHIO STATE 10
They’re still bitter about this one in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines and Buckeyes were both unbeaten when this game ended deadlocked, so the Big Ten’s athletic directors voted to decide who went to the Rose Bowl. Ohio State was the choice. It’s a wonder the league didn’t adopt an overtime format immediately afterward.
DEC. 31, 1975: CSKA MOSCOW 3, MONTREAL CANADIENS 3
Soviet goaltender Vladislav Tretiak was sensational in this international clash at Montreal’s Forum, and the Canadiens settled for a tie despite badly outshooting the visitors. Soviet star Boris Mikhailov: “On a club level, it was probably the best game ever played .”
NOV. 8, 1980: GEORGIA TECH 3, NOTRE DAME 3
In the midst of its worst season in 46 years, Georgia Tech somehow stunned No. 1 Notre Dame 3-3 and ended the national championship hopes for the Irish. Notre Dame was 7-0 and had outscored its previous three opponents 88-6 before the tie.
JAN. 1, 1988: AUBURN 16, SYRACUSE 16
Auburn coach Pat Dye caused an uproar when the Tigers kicked a 30-yard field goal in the final seconds to spoil Syracuse’s shot at a 12-0 season. Dye stood by his decision: “If they wanted to win, they should have blocked the field goal.”
AUG. 26, 1990: COLORADO 31, TENNESSEE 31
The first “Pigskin Classic” — a neutral-site showcase game early in the season — was the start to Colorado’s championship season. The Buffaloes began the year 1-1-1 before running off 10 straight wins and beating Notre Dame in the Orange Bowl to claim the AP national title.
SEPT. 10, 1993: DRAW BETWEEN JULIO CESAR CHAVEZ AND PERNELL WHITAKER
Chavez was 87-0 coming into the fight, but he barely remained undefeated with a draw against Whitaker. “It’s a win for me because the public will decide,” Whitaker said.
NOV. 26, 1994: FLORIDA 31, FLORIDA STATE 31
Steve Spurrier’s Gators led 31-3 before Florida State stormed back with a dazzling rally. The Seminoles picked up where they left off when the teams met in the Sugar Bowl that season, beating Florida 23-17.
JULY 9, 2002: AMERICAN LEAGUE 7, NATIONAL LEAGUE 7
Fans were furious when this All-Star game was halted after 11 innings because the teams ran out of pitchers. It had been a terrific game, too, highlighted by Torii Hunter’s spectacular catch robbing Barry Bonds of a home run.
NOV. 16, 2008: CINCINNATI BENGALS 13, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 13
This utterly forgettable matchup is remembered because Philadelphia quarterback Donovan McNabb said afterward he didn’t know a game could end in a tie.
No worries, Donovan. It doesn’t happen often.
Follow Noah Trister at www.Twitter.com/noahtrister