1977 Sun Bowl
1234 Total
Florida 0077 14
Texas A&M 313813 37
DateJanuary 2, 1977
StadiumSun Bowl
LocationEl Paso, Texas
MVPK Tony Franklin
National anthemCyndi Grecco[1]
Halftime showFightin' Texas Aggie Band & Cyndi Grecco[2]
United States TV coverage
AnnouncersPat Summerall
Tom Brookshier
Sun Bowl
 < 1975 1977 (Dec)

The January 1977 Sun Bowl was a college football postseason bowl game that featured the Texas A&M Aggies and the Florida Gators.


The Aggies finished third in the Southwest Conference due to losses to the eventual co-champions of the conference, Texas Tech and Houston, though they were invited to their first ever Sun Bowl. The Gators finished tied for third in the Southeastern Conference with Kentucky and Mississippi State in their fourth straight bowl season.

The game was moved from its traditional late December date to Sunday, January 2, which was the open week between the National Football League's conference championship games and Super Bowl XI.

Game summary

The Aggies scored first on a Tony Franklin field goal from 39 yards out after a drive of nearly 4 minutes to give them the lead midway through the first quarter. The Gators had a miserable first half, with two first downs and no completed passes in total. Aggies QB David Walker scored on a touchdown plunge to make it 10–0 in the 2nd quarter after a Florida fumble gave the ball to the Aggies at the 14. After a Florida punt, the Aggies were given the ball back at the 50. After gaining only 5 yards, the Aggies let Franklin attempt a 62-yard field goal, which went through the uprights. His kick set a postseason record and gave them a 13–0 lead. After both teams punted, the Aggies drove from their 33 to the Gator 16 and Franklin made a 33-yard field goal to make it 16–0 with 1:26 left in the second half. George Woodard scored on a touchdown plunge with 10:50 left in the third quarter on a short 45-yard drive. A successful 2-point conversion made the score 24–0 A&M. Wes Chandler rushed for a 29-yard touchdown to narrow the lead to 24–7. However, a Florida interception gave the ball back to the Aggies later in the quarter and George Woodard scored on a 3-yard touchdown plunge to make it 31–7. The Gators scored one last time in the fourth quarter on a Terry LeCount touchdown plunge to make it 31–14. Woodard scored on a touchdown pass from Walker with 3:08 left to make it 37–14, and the Aggies won soon after. Franklin kicked three field goals and kicked two extra point attempts in an MVP effort. He was later named to the 75th Anniversary All-Sun Bowl Team. George Woodard rushed for 125 yards on 25 attempts with 3 touchdowns.[3][4]


After the 1977 football season, A&M played in the Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl in December. Florida did not return to a bowl game until the 1980 Tangerine Bowl. A&M next played in the Sun Bowl in 1989, when it was known as the John Hancock Bowl. Through the 2019 football season, the January 1977 edition has been Florida's only Sun Bowl appearance, and has also been the most recent Sun Bowl not played in December.


Statistics Texas A&M Florida
First Downs 20 14
Yards Rushing 248 172
Yards Passing 122 58
Total Yards 370 230
Punts-Average 5-34.6 9-39.0
Fumbles-Lost 3-3 6-4
Interceptions Thrown 0 1
Penalties-Yards 6-33 4-26


  1. ^ "Sun Bowl Half-Time Begins in Mind's Eye". El Paso Times. December 8, 1976. p. 38. Retrieved January 17, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
  2. ^ Lee, Pete (January 4, 1977). "Editor's Corner". El Paso Herald-Post. p. 4. Retrieved January 17, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
  3. ^ "Texas A&M 37, Florida 14 | Recaps - Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl | December 31, 2021 | el Paso, Texas".
  4. ^ "Florida Gators vs Texas A&M Aggies, January 2, 1977" (PDF). sunbowl.org.