FIU football turns 15 years old when the 2016 season kicks off against Indiana on September 1. In their short history the Panthers have had some memorable moments -- most of them in wins but some in losses as well. To commemorate the 15 years of FIU football as we get closer to the season opener, I'll count down the Top 15 moments in FIU football history
Having covered FIU football since its first game in August 2002 when I worked for the local newspaper, the following countdown is what I believe are the Top 15 moments. Of course, you may disagree so feel free to let me know what you think in the comments section.
Tabor Rallies FIU to First Road Win
Before the 2004 season, FIU was 0-9 on the road in its short history which at that time consisted of two seasons. The Panthers opened the 2004 season in Youngstown, Ohio against perennial Division I-AA stalwart Youngstown State.
Coming off a 2-10 season in 2003, FIU had a tough season opener in 2004 that was followed by games against D1-AA ranked teams Stephen F. Austin, Georgia Southern and Western Kentucky.
At Youngstown State, FIU fell behind 16-3 and couldn't muster much offense therefore in the fourth quarter then-FIU coach Don Strock decided to turn to backup quarterback David Tabor.
Tabor, the first-ever FIU football signee back in 2001, wore No. 10 like Strock did when he played for the Miami Dolphins. And like Strock often did for the Dolphins, Tabor rallied the Panthers.
Down 16-3 with 9:47 left in the fourth quarter, Tabor took over with terrible field position starting his first drive at the FIU 8. Thirteen plays later Tabor connected with tight end Sam Smith on a 12-yard touchdown pass.
The next time FIU got the ball Tabor needed just six plays to find Harold Leath for a 9-yard touchdown pass to tie the score and send the game into overtime where Tabor hooked up with tight end James Williams for a 1-yard score. The FIU defense stopped YSU on its overtime possession and the Panthers came away with their first-ever road win, 22-16.
Next on the Top 15 countdown: FIU crushes a Sun Belt power
FIU FOOTBALL'S TOP 15 MOMENTS
10. Hilton Heave