Gator Bowl

Businessman Charles Hilty is credited with conceiving the Gator Bowl. A group of four, including Hilty, put up $10,000 to finance the first Gator Bowl in 1946. It could hardly be deemed a success, as just 7,362 fans came to Fairfield Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla., to see Wake Forest defeat South Carolina 26-14.

Two years later, despite the fact that neither of the first two Gator Bowls sold out, the stadium was expanded and renamed "Gator Bowl Stadium." The next year, in 1949, the bowl's future was secured, when 32,939 fans watched Clemson beat Missouri 24-23 on a late field goal from Jack Miller.

Memorable moments

• In 1955, the Gator Bowl became the first bowl game to be televised nationally. Fans across the country saw Vanderbilt upset Auburn 25-13 on CBS.

• Despite its multitude of successes, the Gator Bowl experienced some tragedy in 1963. After a post-Gator Bowl party, the Hotel Roosevelt in Jacksonville caught fire, killing 22 people. It was determined the party had nothing to do with the fire. Still, this unfortunate coincidence is still linked with the game.

• Ohio State coach Woody Hayes had always been known as having a bit of a temper. In the 1978 Gator Bowl, that temper was shown off in front of a big audience. Clemson nose guard Charlie Bauman had just picked off OSU quarterback Art Schlichter. After Bauman ran the ball out of bounds on the Buckeyes' side of the field, Hayes hit Bauman with his forearm. Clemson won the game 17-15 and Hayes was fired before he even left Jacksonville.

• Bobby Bowden coached his final game in the bowl. A Gator-Bowl record crowd of 84,129 saw Bowden carried off the field after his Florida State Seminoles defeated West Virginia 33-21.

GATOR BOWL RESULTS
YEARWINNERSCORELOSERSCORE
1946Wake Forest26South Carolina14
1947Oklahoma34North Carolina State13
1948Georgia20Maryland20
1949Clemson24Missouri23
1950Maryland20Missouri7
1951Wyoming20Washington & Lee7
1952Miami (Florida)14Clemson0
1953Florida14Tulsa13
1954Texas Tech35Auburn13
1954Auburn33Baylor13
1955Vanderbilt25Auburn13
1956Georgia Tech21Pittsburgh14
1957Tennessee3Texas A&M0
1958Ole Miss7Florida3
1960Arkansas14Georgia Tech7
1960Florida13Baylor12
1961Penn State30Georgia Tech15
1962Florida17Penn State7
1963North Carolina35Air Force0
1965Florida State36Oklahoma19
1965Georgia Tech31Texas Tech21
1966Tennessee18Syracuse12
1967Florida State17Penn State17
1968Missouri35Alabama10
1969Florida14Tennessee13
1971Auburn35Mississippi28
1971Georgia7North Carolina3
1972Auburn24Colorado3
1973Texas Tech28Tennessee19
1974Auburn27Texas3
1975Maryland13Florida0
1976Notre Dame20Penn State9
1977Pittsburgh34Clemson3
1978Clemson17Ohio State15
1979North Carolina17Michigan15
1980Pittsburgh37South Carolina9
1981North Carolina31Arkansas27
1982Florida State31West Virginia12
1983Florida14Iowa6
1984Oklahoma State21South Carolina14
1985Florida State34Oklahoma State23
1986Clemson27Stanford21
1987LSU30South Carolina13
1989Georgia34Michigan State27
1989Clemson27West Virginia7
1991Michigan35Ole Miss3
1991Oklahoma48Virginia14
1992Florida27NC State10
1993Alabama24North Carolina10
1994Tennessee45Virginia Tech23
1996Syracuse41Clemson0
1997North Carolina20West Virginia13
1998North Carolina42Virginia Tech3
1999Georgia Tech35Notre Dame28
2000Miami (Fla.)28Georgia Tech13
2001Virginia Tech41Clemson20
2002Florida State30Virginia Tech17
2003NC State28Notre Dame6
2004Maryland41West Virginia7
2005Florida State30West Virginia18
2006Virginia Tech35Louisville24
2007West Virginia38Georgia Tech35
2008Texas Tech31Virginia28
2009Nebraska26Clemson21
2010Florida State33West Virginia21
2011Mississippi State52Michigan14
2012Florida24Ohio State17
2013Northwestern34Mississippi State20
2014Nebraska24Georgia19
Two games played in 1960, the first on Jan. 2, the second on Dec. 30. No game played in 1959. Two games also played in 1965, on Jan. 2 and Dec. 31. No game played in 1964. Two games were also played in 1971, on Jan. 2 and Dec. 31, with no game played in 1970. Other years with duplicate games were 1989 and '91, with no games played in 1988 or '90.