The Play: Joe Starkey's Call of the 1982 Cal/Stanford Big Game


....So with 31 seconds to go, they [Stanford] still have that time out left but still need to get a little further down field.

Here's Elway, bringing 'em up. Pitch back, breaking to his left is Doderer. Doderer may go all the way!!! He is dropped at the 17 yd. line! He swept to his left in a beautiful play; Anderson and Rogers made the tackle; but Stanford is now in position to win with a field goal. Oh my goodness, what a finish!! Clock has 23 seconds remaining. And they still have their time out left.

Clock begins to run again; it's down to 18. Let's see what Elway does. Pitch back; gives it to Doderer, sweeps to his right, he is dropped to the 18 yd. line. And now with 8 seconds to go...Kevin Moen makes the tackle, Stanford calls the time out and sets themselves up to win the game with a field goal -- 35 yards....What a finish. I'll tell you this is something. And for John Elway to pull this out after being 4th and 17 on his own 13 yard line, with less than a minute to go is one of the most remarkable finishes you'll ever see.

Harmon's a great kicker. This is a gimme for Harmon from the 35. A 35 yard kick, 8 seconds to go. Mark Harmon, 35 will win it.... Listen to the crowd. Here's the snap; here's the kick; it is long and up, and it's GOOD!! Stanford hits it with 4 seconds to go! And takes the lead 20-19! Only a miracle could save the Bears as Stanford piles out on the field.

Now there will be a 15 yard penalty against Stanford on the kick-off for exuberance is about what it comes down to.


Joe, so this is the Big Game?!


Awesome, flow of emotion back and forth, great football. Well, this is some show I'll tell you. And now the Bears in a seemingly impossible situation. They have only one time-out left. They pretty well have to run it back... to save the game and boy, talk about a heartbreaking way to lose....But what a great way to win if you are a Stanford fan. 8 seconds to go, 35 yard kick by Harmon. It'll go right up there with Langford's kick in '74, which was further of course...a 50 yarder at the buzzer.

The Bears' problem is...that although the kick-off will now come from the 25 yard line, it's unlikely that Ford can get the ball and get out of bounds far enough upfield to set up one try at the field goal. What a recovery by Stanford; you have to give them all sorts of credit. 4th and 17 at their own 13 yd. line, and it beats staring at them in the face, and they saved it. They pulled it out. What a show.

Alright here we go with the kick-off. Harmon will probably try to squib it and he does. Ball comes loose and the Bears have to get out of bounds. Rogers along the sideline, another one...they're still in deep trouble at midfield, they tried to do a couple of....the ball is still loose as they get it to Rogers. They get it back to the 30, they're down to the 20...Oh the band is out on the field!! He's gonna go into the endzone!!! He got into the endzone!! Will it count? The Bears have scored but the bands are out on the field.

There were flags all over the place. Wait and see what happens; we don't know who won the game. There are flags on the field. We have to see whether or not the flags are against Stanford or Cal. The Bears may have made some illegal laterals. It could be that it won't count. The Bears, believe it or not, took it all the way into the endzone. If the penalty is against Stanford, California would win the game. If it is not, the game is over and Stanford has won. We've heard no decision yet. Everybody is milling around on the FIELD!!! AND THE BEARS!!! THE BEARS HAVE WON!!! THE BEARS HAVE WON!!! Oh my God, the most amazing, sensational, traumatic, heart rending... exciting thrilling finish in the history of college football! California has won... the Big Game...over Stanford. Oh excuse me for my voice, but I have never, never seen anything like it in the history of I have ever seen any game in my life! The Bears have won it! There will be no extra point! Hold it right here, don't anybody go away....

After just about everybody on the kick-off team handled the ball, Kevin Moen finally did it. And he ran through 15 members of the Stanford band, nobody tackled him. The Fool!....Glenn Shapiro, our statistician, has just held up a card and it says the truth. The Stanford band just cost their team that ball game. The Stanford band ran out on the field, it left all the defenders in an impossible situation to get to the Bears carrying the ball. They couldn't tackle 'em. The band, in effect, served as extra blockers, the official had no choice but to let the play go as was. The Bears have scored on the kick-off, brought it all the way back. At least 5 men handled the ball on one lateral after another. I thought Rogers was dead at one point. He got rid of the ball I believe it was Kevin Moen that Jan said that scored the winning touchdown as the kick-off came from the 25 yard line. This place is like it has never been ever. Stanford can't believe it.


The field is covered with people. Stanford is standing around in a daze. The band is in the corner, doesn't know what to do. Blue and Gold is all over the field jumping in joy! 25-20 is the final score. The University of California has won the 85th Big Game!


The only thing were not sure of, Jan, is we'd like to credit the Stanford tuba player who threw the key block on the drive! We will be back, believe it or not, if we can compose ourselves. Right after this with a recap of today's unbelievable game.

[station identification]


Welcome back to Bezerkeley. It is indescribable here. The field is absolutely overwhelmed with Cal fans. The Stanford band is besides themselves with disappointment. They can't believe what happened to them in effect, because they were on the field before the Play ended, but they thought the Play was over. They in effect blocked and allowed Kevin Moen to score the winning touchdown. To recap it from the top, I know we got crazy because it was an hysterical scene. There were so many laterals, so many times it appeared that the Bears were finished, that the ball was simply being stopped cold, that it was impossible to even follow who had the ball because the Bears when they finally got down into Stanford territory, had the problem of having to run through the Stanford band. We literally couldn't see who had the ball, or who was running with it.

I guarantee you, if you watch college football for the rest of your life, you will never again see or hear a game to match this one for pure dramatic excitement in the most spectacular...crazy, amazing remarkable games I have ever seen. You cannot believe the sight here at Berkeley as the Axe is now being carried. The Axe is now being carried around the field by the Bears. Rich Dixon, I believe, has got his hands on it. Rich Dixon's got it in his hands. It looks like, uh, trying to pick out some of the other players down there, Jan, but again we should point out it's Kevin Moen. If it does not sound like a credible broadcast of the final play, my apologies. But believe me we didn't know how to call it until it was over either.


I don't want to apologize. It was just so wonderful to be a part of this event today. And down at the end, it looks like the Old Blue rugby team. The Old Blues that have been the national champion year after year had put that play in, because at least 6 or 7 different Bears touched the ball as they lateraled it. All good legal laterals moving down field before Moen finally ran through the Stanford band into history.


I don't think a single person in the entire sellout crowd has walked outside the confines of the stadium yet. Even to go underneath the stands to party some more. The field is indescribable yet. It is so packed, so full that the players for California are trying to go around the field carrying the big Axe which they have won back as they finish their season 7-4, have had to have a path cleared for them to walk around the stadium. And what is more dramatic than anything, is the overwhelming movement, action, and excitement of Blue and Gold against the red sea down to our right that is stunned into absolute silence. They are virtually immobile. I have not seen a member of the Stanford band so much as move in the past 3 minutes. They are just now beginning to try to get some semblance of sanity back into their lives as they reflect on the fact that they in a way helped the California Golden Bears win the 85th Big Game here today by a score of 25-20. Once again from here in Berkeley...where the serenading and the songs and the music and the parties will go on late into the night as people years from now...will say they were here today for what has to be as of this moment the greatest Big Game in history. The California Golden Bears win it. Once again the final score: California 25, Stanford 20....

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