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The Blowout Directory

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The NFL craves parity. Failing that, it will take basic competitiveness, and the league largely succeeds in that goal. In just six NFL games last season, the defeated team lost by 35 points or more. Even the 2-14 Bengals only had four games decided by more than two touchdowns.

Meanwhile, during the 2019 college football season, 158 games ended with one team ahead by at least 35 points. Talent and resource disparities, stylistic differences, and the sheer number of additional games in college explain the existence of the gulf, but that number’s also been going up over time. To be fair, college football teams have added a significant number of games over that stretch. The 2019 season, including bowls and the Playoff, had 888 FBS games. That’s 78 more than were played in 2009 and202 more than were played in 1999.

35’s a somewhat arbitrary number to draw the line between blowout/non-blowout. Notre Dame lost the 2013 BCS National Championship to Alabama by 28, and nobody thought “well, that was a squeaker!” But at 35 points, the losing team would’ve needed at least five scores just to tie the game. A loss by fewer points might be a blowout; getting beat by 35 or more is indisputably so.

Using that definition of blowout, I compiled some data from 1990 through 2019 to see which teams have handed out the most extirpations over that span.

Blowouts Delivered, 1990-2019

School Total Blowouts
School Total Blowouts
Air Force 28
Akron 12
Alabama 62
Appalachian State 13
Arizona 21
Arizona State 25
Arkansas 33
Arkansas State 18
Army 18
Auburn 37
Ball State 6
Baylor 34
Boise State 71
Boston College 15
Bowling Green State 30
Brigham Young 35
Buffalo 8
California 26
Central Michigan 17
Charlotte 1
Cincinnati 26
Clemson 52
Coastal Carolina 2
Colorado 18
Colorado State 19
Connecticut 14
Duke 13
East Carolina 14
Eastern Michigan 6
Florida 67
Florida Atlantic 8
Florida International 6
Florida State 67
Fresno State 27
Georgia 39
Georgia Southern 7
Georgia State 0
Georgia Tech 26
Hawaii 22
Houston 30
Idaho 9
Illinois 18
Indiana 14
Iowa 33
Iowa State 10
Kansas 21
Kansas State 66
Kent State 4
Kentucky 19
Liberty 4
Louisiana 10
Louisiana Tech 29
Louisiana-Monroe 5
Louisville 33
LSU 52
Marshall 21
Maryland 21
Massachusetts 2
Memphis 22
Miami (FL) 53
Miami (OH) 18
Michigan 39
Michigan State 29
Middle Tennessee State 17
Minnesota 21
Mississippi State 33
Missouri 28
Navy 18
Nebraska 77
Nevada 33
New Mexico 14
New Mexico State 6
North Carolina 24
North Carolina State 20
North Texas 15
Northern Illinois 27
Northwestern 10
Notre Dame 29
Ohio 22
Ohio State 68
Oklahoma 74
Oklahoma State 41
Old Dominion 2
Ole Miss 24
Oregon 53
Oregon State 20
Pacific 2
Penn State 48
Pitt 14
Purdue 21
Rice 8
Rutgers 22
San Diego State 16
San Jose State 11
SMU 8
South Alabama 2
South Carolina 17
South Florida 19
Southern Mississippi 27
Stanford 26
Syracuse 25
Temple 15
Tennessee 47
Texas 48
Texas A&M 47
Texas Christian 42
Texas State 3
Texas Tech 51
Toledo 24
Troy 16
Tulane 11
Tulsa 25
UAB 13
UCF 28
UCLA 19
UNLV 8
USC 36
Utah 30
Utah State 25
UTEP 7
UTSA 1
Vanderbilt 11
Virginia 27
Virginia Tech 52
Wake Forest 11
Washington 36
Washington State 27
West Virginia 38
Western Kentucky 16
Western Michigan 27
Wisconsin 49
Wyoming 12

I also made this list of teams who have been on the business end of a blowout the most.

Blowouts Received, 1990-2019

School Total Blowouts
School Total Blowouts
Air Force 6
Akron 42
Alabama 2
Appalachian State 2
Arizona 22
Arizona State 7
Arkansas 19
Arkansas State 39
Army 18
Auburn 8
Ball State 27
Baylor 36
Boise State 7
Boston College 10
Bowling Green State 24
Brigham Young 6
Buffalo 26
California 15
Central Michigan 24
Charlotte 8
Cincinnati 20
Clemson 10
Coastal Carolina 2
Colorado 20
Colorado State 16
Connecticut 20
Duke 40
East Carolina 23
Eastern Michigan 44
Florida 4
Florida Atlantic 21
Florida International 20
Florida State 3
Fresno State 19
Georgia 4
Georgia Southern 4
Georgia State 7
Georgia Tech 12
Hawaii 34
Houston 20
Idaho 39
Illinois 26
Indiana 29
Iowa 9
Iowa State 31
Kansas 60
Kansas State 12
Kent State 50
Kentucky 25
Liberty 2
Louisiana 38
Louisiana Tech 29
Louisiana-Monroe 48
Louisville 13
LSU 4
Marshall 14
Maryland 27
Massachusetts 20
Memphis 16
Miami (FL) 10
Miami (OH) 18
Michigan 2
Michigan State 13
Middle Tennessee State 12
Minnesota 17
Mississippi State 14
Missouri 21
Navy 20
Nebraska 13
Nevada 24
New Mexico 34
New Mexico State 62
North Carolina 9
North Carolina State 10
North Texas 34
Northern Illinois 22
Northwestern 27
Notre Dame 6
Ohio 13
Ohio State 1
Oklahoma 8
Oklahoma State 14
Old Dominion 6
Ole Miss 14
Oregon 8
Oregon State 24
Pacific 9
Penn State 7
Pitt 18
Purdue 15
Rice 35
Rutgers 47
San Diego State 10
San Jose State 48
SMU 39
South Alabama 10
South Carolina 14
South Florida 5
Southern Mississippi 15
Stanford 14
Syracuse 18
Temple 44
Tennessee 9
Texas 10
Texas A&M 14
Texas Christian 7
Texas State 10
Texas Tech 18
Toledo 13
Troy 16
Tulane 41
Tulsa 21
UAB 24
UCF 11
UCLA 12
UNLV 44
USC 2
Utah 4
Utah State 29
UTEP 32
UTSA 8
Vanderbilt 29
Virginia 15
Virginia Tech 4
Wake Forest 29
Washington 15
Washington State 25
West Virginia 8
Western Kentucky 8
Western Michigan 12
Wisconsin 7
Wyoming 22

A few interesting tidbits from those two sets:

  • Iowa State and Northwestern are the two Power 5 teams with the fewest blowouts delivered (10 each).
  • The Pac 12 only has one team in the top ten for blowouts delivered (Oregon, with 53). USC and Washington are somehow tied with 36 blowouts handed out a piece; Oregon State’s won more games like this (20) than UCLA (19).
  • Alabama, LSU, and Ohio State are the only three active FBS schools who haven’t suffered a 35+ point loss since 1990. UPDATE: A helpful reader pointed out Alabama got blown out by Arkansas in 1998; upon further review, I rechecked the numbers and yup, all three have lost at least one blowout. All of these numbers come from the very helpful folks over at Sports Reference; we apologize for operator error.

Are we done with charts and tables? Friend, we are certainly not. Here’s those two datasets combined so you can see which schools wins more blowouts than they lose (or vice versa) and the number of blowouts they participate in on either side.

Blowouts in Aggregate, 1990-2019

School Blowouts Delivered Blowouts Received Difference Total Blowout Games
School Blowouts Delivered Blowouts Received Difference Total Blowout Games
Air Force 28 6 22 34
Akron 12 42 -30 54
Alabama 62 2 60 64
Appalachian State 13 2 11 15
Arizona 21 22 -1 43
Arizona State 25 7 18 32
Arkansas 33 19 14 52
Arkansas State 18 39 -21 57
Army 18 18 0 36
Auburn 37 8 29 45
Ball State 6 27 -21 33
Baylor 34 36 -2 70
Boise State 71 7 64 78
Boston College 15 10 5 25
Bowling Green State 30 24 6 54
Brigham Young 35 6 29 41
Buffalo 8 26 -18 34
California 26 15 11 41
Central Michigan 17 24 -7 41
Charlotte 1 8 -7 9
Cincinnati 26 20 6 46
Clemson 52 10 42 62
Coastal Carolina 2 2 0 4
Colorado 18 20 -2 38
Colorado State 19 16 3 35
Connecticut 14 20 -6 34
Duke 13 40 -27 53
East Carolina 14 23 -9 37
Eastern Michigan 6 44 -38 50
Florida 67 4 63 71
Florida Atlantic 8 21 -13 29
Florida International 6 20 -14 26
Florida State 67 3 64 70
Fresno State 27 19 8 46
Georgia 39 4 35 43
Georgia Southern 7 4 3 11
Georgia State 0 7
Georgia Tech 26 12 14 38
Hawaii 22 34 -12 56
Houston 30 20 10 50
Idaho 9 39 -30 48
Illinois 18 26 -8 44
Indiana 14 29 -15 43
Iowa 33 9 24 42
Iowa State 10 31 -21 41
Kansas 21 60 -39 81
Kansas State 66 12 54 78
Kent State 4 50 -46 54
Kentucky 19 25 -6 44
Liberty 4 2 2 6
Louisiana 10 38 -28 48
Louisiana Tech 29 29 0 58
Louisiana-Monroe 5 48 -43 53
Louisville 33 13 20 46
LSU 52 4 48 56
Marshall 21 14 7 35
Maryland 21 27 -6 48
Massachusetts 2 20 -18 22
Memphis 22 16 6 38
Miami (FL) 53 10 43 63
Miami (OH) 18 18 0 36
Michigan 39 2 37 41
Michigan State 29 13 16 42
Middle Tennessee State 17 12 5 29
Minnesota 21 17 4 38
Mississippi State 33 14 19 47
Missouri 28 21 7 49
Navy 18 20 -2 38
Nebraska 77 13 64 90
Nevada 33 24 9 57
New Mexico 14 34 -20 48
New Mexico State 6 62 -56 68
North Carolina 24 9 15 33
North Carolina State 20 10 10 30
North Texas 15 34 -19 49
Northern Illinois 27 22 5 49
Northwestern 10 27 -17 37
Notre Dame 29 6 23 35
Ohio 22 13 9 35
Ohio State 68 1 67 69
Oklahoma 74 8 66 82
Oklahoma State 41 14 27 55
Old Dominion 2 6 -4 8
Ole Miss 24 14 10 38
Oregon 53 8 45 61
Oregon State 20 24 -4 44
Pacific 2 9 -7 11
Penn State 48 7 41 55
Pitt 14 18 -4 32
Purdue 21 15 6 36
Rice 8 35 -27 43
Rutgers 22 47 -25 69
San Diego State 16 10 6 26
San Jose State 11 48 -37 59
SMU 8 39 -31 47
South Alabama 2 10 -8 12
South Carolina 17 14 3 31
South Florida 19 5 14 24
Southern Mississippi 27 15 12 42
Stanford 26 14 12 40
Syracuse 25 18 7 43
Temple 15 44 -29 59
Tennessee 47 9 38 56
Texas 48 10 38 58
Texas A&M 47 14 33 61
Texas Christian 42 7 35 49
Texas State 3 10 -7 13
Texas Tech 51 18 33 69
Toledo 24 13 11 37
Troy 16 16 0 32
Tulane 11 41 -30 52
Tulsa 25 21 4 46
UAB 13 24 -11 37
UCF 28 11 17 39
UCLA 19 12 7 31
UNLV 8 44 -36 52
USC 36 2 34 38
Utah 30 4 26 34
Utah State 25 29 -4 54
UTEP 7 32 -25 39
UTSA 1 8 -7 9
Vanderbilt 11 29 -18 40
Virginia 27 15 12 42
Virginia Tech 52 4 48 56
Wake Forest 11 29 -18 40
Washington 36 15 21 51
Washington State 27 25 2 52
West Virginia 38 8 30 46
Western Kentucky 16 8 8 24
Western Michigan 27 12 15 39
Wisconsin 49 7 42 56
Wyoming 12 22 -10 34

And if you’re more interested in single-season accolades, here’s every school that won at least five games by 35 points or more in a year.

Single-Season Blowouts Won, 1990-2019

School Year Blowout Wins
School Year Blowout Wins
Clemson 2019 10
Nebraska 1995 9
Florida State 2013 8
Boise State 2010 8
Kansas State 2002 8
Nebraska 1996 8
Ohio State 2019 7
Kansas State 1998 7
LSU 2019 6
Utah State 2018 6
Washington 2016 6
Oklahoma 2015 6
Houston 2011 6
Wisconsin 2011 6
Texas Christian 2010 6
Boise State 2009 6
Texas Christian 2009 6
Boise State 2008 6
Kansas 2007 6
Texas 2005 6
Oklahoma 2003 6
Florida 1996 6
Florida State 1993 6
Washington 1991 6
Alabama 2019 5
Alabama 2018 5
Ohio State 2017 5
Oklahoma State 2017 5
Alabama 2016 5
Michigan 2016 5
Ohio State 2016 5
Western Kentucky 2016 5
Michigan State 2014 5
Texas Christian 2014 5
Alabama 2013 5
Baylor 2013 5
Clemson 2013 5
Marshall 2013 5
Oregon 2013 5
Florida State 2012 5
Hawaii 2010 5
Ohio State 2010 5
Oregon 2010 5
Stanford 2010 5
Florida 2008 5
Oklahoma 2008 5
Boise State 2007 5
Hawaii 2006 5
Texas Tech 2005 5
USC 2004 5
Boise State 2003 5
Texas 2003 5
Boise State 2002 5
Oklahoma 2002 5
Florida 2001 5
Miami (FL) 2001 5
Florida State 2000 5
Kansas State 2000 5
Kansas State 1999 5
Nebraska 1997 5
Florida State 1996 5
Tennessee 1993 5

Finally, here’s every matchup between FBS programs where one team’s beaten the same opponent in a blowout at least six times.

Most Blowout-y FBS Matchups, 1990-2019

Winner Loser Number of Blowouts
Winner Loser Number of Blowouts
Florida State Duke 10
Nebraska Kansas 9
Kansas State Kansas 9
Wisconsin Indiana 8
Toledo Eastern Michigan 8
Texas Rice 8
Ohio State Northwestern 8
Florida State Wake Forest 8
Penn State Temple 7
Ohio State Illinois 7
Florida Kentucky 7
Florida State Maryland 7
Baylor SMU 7
West Virginia Rutgers 6
Tennessee Vanderbilt 6
Tennessee Kentucky 6
Penn State Maryland 6
Oklahoma Tulsa 6
Oklahoma Kansas 6
Oklahoma Iowa State 6
Ohio State Rutgers 6
Nebraska Missouri 6
Miami Temple 6
Kansas State Iowa State 6
Iowa Northwestern 6
Boise State San Jose State 6
Boise State New Mexico State 6
Boise State Nevada 6
Boise State Hawaii 6
Baylor Kansas 6
Alabama Mississippi 6

I give you this data trusting that you will use it for the only two true purposes of the sports internet: boasting and berating. Go forth, and follow whichever path you find truest.