The folks at ESPN were kind enough to send us an advance copy of their new documentary "The Play That Changed College Football," which chronicles Antonio Langham's pick six (and all that surrounded it) in 1992 in the inaugural SEC Championship Game at Legion Field in Birmingham, Alabama. Alabama finished the regular season undefeated that year and in the words of Coach Gene Stallings, "We were 11-0 and hadn't won anything." They were to face 8-3 Florida. Those around the college football world considered the idea of a conference championship game to be folly given that it could likely jeopardize a team from playing for the national title. Alabama would've been set to go to the national title that year after the Auburn game, but found itself with another game to play. Late in the fourth quarter of this game, it seemed as if jeopardizing Alabama's chance at a national title was exactly what was about to happen. Needless to say, Langham's interception and return for a TD of Shane Matthews' pass erased then SEC commissioner Roy Kramer's worst nightmare from being fully realized in front of a nationally televised audience.
As Alabama fans, we are all well aware of the story of the 1992 national championship team and how it all went down against Florida in that first conference championship game. The documentary credits this play as opening the doors for the conference expansions and championship games added by the Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12, C-USA and the MAC as well as saying it's pushed the SEC towards expansion to 14 teams. The documentary contains interviews with Gene Stallings, Steve Spurrier, Antonio Langham, Jay Barker, Eric Curry, John Copeland, Shane Matthews, Eric Rhett, Roy Kramer, Keith Jackson and others. As Alabama fans, you're going to learn very little that you didn't know before, but it's still worth watching if for no other reason than you can take a walk down memory lane and see a few interesting interviews with a handful of Bama legends. I would actually venture a guess that there's more here for fans of the game in general that don't realize what a quietly cataclysmic event this game turned out to be. It's not earth shattering television, but it's definitely worth watching.
"The Play That Changed College Football" premiers tonight at 10 p.m. CST on ESPNU.