COLUMBIA, MO., OCT. 6 -- One of football's basic rules is a team has four downs to make a first down. But today No. 15 Colorado pulled out a 33-31 victory over Missouri on the final play -- on fifth down.
Quarterback Charles Johnson scored from the 1, capping an 88-yard drive 2:23 after Missouri had gone ahead, 31-27.
But the Buffaloes ran five plays after gaining first down at the Missouri 4.
With first down at the 4, Johnson grounded the ball, stopping the clock at :28. Eric Bieniemy ran three yards and Colorado called its last timeout at :18.
On the next play -- with the scoreboard and down marker still reading second down -- Bieniemy was stopped for no gain.
Because Missouri was slow getting off the pile, officials stopped the clock, enabling Johnson to take a quick snap and ground the ball with two seconds left. He then scored the game-winner.
A 20-minute delay followed as fans charged the field and both teams headed for the locker rooms.
Missouri coaches complained too late to referee J.C. Lauderback, who later said, "Our record on the field as officials is that they scored on fourth down."