1971 Cotton Bowl Classic

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1971 Cotton Bowl Classic
1 2 3 4 Total
Notre Dame 14 10 0 0 24
Texas 3 8 0 0 11
Date January 1, 1971
Season 1970
Stadium Cotton Bowl
Location Dallas, Texas
MVP FB Steve Worster (Texas)
LB Bob Olson (Notre Dame)
Attendance 72,000
United States TV coverage
Network CBS
Cotton Bowl Classic
 < 1970  1972

The 1971 Cotton Bowl Classic was a college football bowl game played at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas on January 1, 1971.[1] It featured the Texas Longhorns and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.


Notre Dame was coached by Ara Parseghian. The captains for the Irish were Larry DiNardo and Tim Kelly. The team also featured Joe Theismann at quarterback and Tom Gatewood as a wide receiver. Texas was coached by Darrell Royal. The captains for the Longhorns were Scott Henderson, Steve Worster, Bobby Wuensch and Bill Zapalac. The team also featured Jerry Sisemore at tackle and Jim Bertelsen at running back. Texas was trying to win another National Championship while Notre Dame was seeking revenge for losing the previous Cotton Bowl.

Game summary[edit]

Notre Dame scored 21 straight points after Texas' initial field goal. Texas scored in the second quarter to make it 21–11 before Notre Dame added a field goal before halftime, making it 24–11. Parseghian's wishbone defense held the Longhorns in check the rest of the game as neither team scored again, as Texas committed six turnovers (five fumbles and an interception) while Notre Dame had only two turnovers. Notre Dame's win ended the Longhorns 30-game winning streak, which is currently (as of October 2011) the 12th longest winning streak in NCAA Division I records. It was also Notre Dame that defeated Oklahoma in 1957 to end their 47-game win streak.[2] Despite this loss, Texas was selected as the nation champion by the Coaches' Poll, since until 1973 the final poll was done at the end of the regular season, prior to bowl games, which were treated in the past as exhibition games.