1986 Fiesta Bowl

Michigan 27, Nebraska 23

1986 fiesta bowl
January 1, 1986

Attendance: 72,454

Offensive Player of the Game: Jamie Morris, Michigan

Defensive Player of the Game: Mark Messner, Michigan

Sportsmanship Award: Mike Mallory, Michigan

Head Coaches: Bo Schembechler, Michigan - Tom Osborne, Nebraska

Weather: Sunny

Television: NBC

Payout Per Team: $1,063,783.60

Michigan defensive back Garland Rivers intercepted Nebraska’s Steve Taylor in the end zone with 28 seconds left in the game to preserve the Wolverines’ 27-23 victory in an exciting 1986 Fiesta Bowl shootout.

Diminutive 5-foot-7 Jamie Morris, a tiny pack of dynamite, exploded for 156 yards on 22 carries. He galloped for 88 yards in the decisive third quarter when Michigan turned a 14-3 halftime deficit into a 27-14 lead after three quarters of play.

The Wolverines took advantage of two Nebraska fumbles and a blocked punt to rack up 24 points in the third quarter and completely turn the game around.

The victory was the first bowl win for Michigan head coach Bo Schembechler since 1981 and only his third in 13 tries.

Nebraska jumped out to a 14-3 lead thanks in part to running back Doug Dubose who scored on short touchdown runs of five and three yards.

Michigan got the breaks it needed in the second half. The Cornhuskers fumbled on their first two possessions of the second half, and the Wolverines turned both turnovers into touchdowns. Gerald White scored the first on a one-yard dive, and quarterback Jim Harbaugh followed with a one-yard sneak of his own.

Pat Moons then hit his second field goal of the game, a short 19-yarder, and Harbaugh added another two-yard TD run.

Nebraska made it close with a one-yard run by Steve Taylor. Michigan then gave Nebraska two points on a safety and kicked off, before Rivers had the interception on a hail mary attempt.

Quarter Scores

Scoring
1
2
3
4
F
Michigan
3
0
24
0
27
Nebraska
0
14
0
9
23

Yardstick

MICH
NEB
16
First Downs
20
49-171
Rushes-Yards
60-304
63
Passing Yards
66
6-16-0
Passes
6-15-1
3
Return Yards
20
5-43.8
Punts
3-40.3
2-0
Fumbles-Lost
6-3
8-43
Penalties-Yards
7-46

How They Scored

MICH
NEB
3
0
Pat Moons 42 yard field goal
3
7
Doug Dubose 5 yard pass from McCathorn Clayton (Dale Klein kick)
3
14
Dubose 3 yard run (Klein kick)
10
14
Gerald White 1 yard run (Moons kick)
17
14
Jim Harbaugh 1 yard run (Moons kick)
20
14
Moons 19 yard field goal
27
14
Harbaugh 2 yard run (Moons kick)
27
21
Steve Taylor 1 yard run (Klein kick)
27
23
Safety Monte Robbins stepped out of end zone

Individual Statistics

Rushing
NEB
Doug Dubose 17-99, Steve Taylor 10-76, McCathorn Clayton 14-68, Tom Rathman 9-47, Von Sheppard 7-13, Ken Kaelin 1-1, Keith Jones 2-0.
MICH
Jamie Morris 22-156, Gerald White 13-38, Bob Perryman 2-1, Monte Robbins 1-(-4), Jim Harbaugh 11-(-20).
Passing
NEB
McCathorn Clayton 4-6-0-51, Steve Taylor 2-9-1-15.
MICH
Jim Harbaugh 6-15-0-63, Paul Jokisch 0-1-0-0.
Receiving
NEB
Todd Frain 3-46, Rod Smith 1-8, Von Sheppard 1-7, Doug Dubose 1-5.
MICH
Eric Kattus 3-38, Jamie Morris 2-10, Paul Jokisch 1-15.