Remembering Miami football epic 2004 comeback versus Louisville

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - NOVEMBER 13. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - NOVEMBER 13. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

Led by quarterback Brock Berlin the Miami football team rallied from two 17 point deficits for an epic comeback against Louisville in 2004.

The Miami football team has staged some epic battles with Louisville. The Hurricanes comeback from a pair of 17 point deficits in 2004 was the most memorable. Miami trailed 24-7 at halftime and 31-14 in the third quarter in the battle of the programs that Howard Schnellenberger once coached.

The Miami football team opened the scoring in the first quarter with a nine-yard touchdown pass from Brock Berlin to redshirt freshman tight end Greg Olson. Olson is an active player with the Seattle Seahawks 16 years later. Louisville scored the next 24 points and 31 of the next 38 points to take control of the game.

Devin Hester gave Miami a jolt to start the second half when he received the opening kickoff a few yards deep in the end zone and returned it 100 yards for a TD. The play was called back because of a penalty. Miami went three and out but would score on its next drive via a Berlin to Roscoe Parish 14-yard TD pass.

Louisville next went 80 yards in eight plays that culminated with a Stefan LeFors to Tiger Jones 22 yard touchdown pass. Miami answered the Cardinals drive with the third straight scoring drive going 66 yards in eight plays when Berlin added his third TD pass of the night to Akieem Jolla from 11 yards out.

After forcing Louisville to three and out, Miami scored on their third straight drive to start the fourth quarter with a Jon Pettie field goal. On third and one from their own 22, LeFors fumbled and Santonio Thomas recovered for Miami at the Cardinals 22. Louisville forced a three and out and Pettie made another FG.

That cut the Louisville lead to 31-27 but Miami was back in the game. Louisville punted after an eight-play 17-yard drive and Hester’s heroics could not be denied this time. A 78-yard punt return TD gave Miami a 34-31 lead with 8:11 left in the fourth quarter. Louisville rallied going 80 yards in nine plays.,

Louisville capped their drive with a Lionel Gates one-yard touchdown run to regain the lead 38-34 with 4:35 remaining. Miami was not finished. The Hurricanes marched 56 yards in 10 plays and capped it off with a one-yard Frank Gore TD run. Amazingly Gore is still in the NFL like Olson and will start for the New York Jets Sunday.

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Future NFL safety Antrel Rolle intercepted Brian Brohm who relieved LeFors, on the last play to clinch the game for Miami. The Hurricanes had their second epic comeback under Berlin after rallying from a 33-10 deficit against Florida in 2003. Gore scored the clinching TD against the Gators in that game too.