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1988 All-American Bowl
1234 Total
Illinois 0703 10
Florida 7007 14
DateDecember 29, 1988
StadiumLegion Field
LocationBirmingham, Alabama
MVPRB Emmitt Smith (Florida)[1]
United States TV coverage
AnnouncersRoger Twibell and Lee Corso
All-American Bowl
 < 1987  1989

The 1988 All-American Bowl was a post-season American college football bowl game at Legion Field in Birmingham, Alabama between the University of Illinois Fighting Illini and the University of Florida Gators on December 29, 1988. The game was the final contest of the 1988 NCAA Division I-A football season for both teams, and ended in a 14–10 victory for Florida.

Game summary

Head Coach John Mackovic led Illinois to a 6-4-1 record and a third-place finish in the Big Ten, reaching the All-American Bowl against the successful Southeastern Conference team from Florida. On the first play from scrimmage, Florida freshman Emmitt Smith ran 55 yards for a touchdown. Illinois tied the score on a 30-yard run by Keith Jones in the second quarter. After a fourth-quarter Doug Higgins field goal gave Illinois a three-point lead, Smith scored his second touchdown with less than four minutes remaining to give the Gators the victory.

Scoring summary

Quarter Team Scoring summary Score
Illinois Florida
1 Florida Emmitt Smith 55-yard touchdown run, John Francis kick good 0 7
2 Illinois Keith Jones 30-yard touchdown run, Doug Higgins kick good 7 7
3 7 7
4 Illinois Doug Higgins 44-yard field goal 10 7
Florida Emmitt Smith 2-yard touchdown run, John Francis kick good 10 14
10 14

Statistical summary

Team Statistics

(Rushing-Passing-Total): UI - 55-194-249; UF - 187-69-256.

Individual Statistical Leaders

Rushing (Att.-Yds.-TD): UI - Jones 18-88-1; UF - Smith 28-159-2.

Passing (Att.-Comp.-Int.-TD-Yds.): UI - Jeff George 37-20-2-0-194; UF - Kyle Morris 12-6-2-0-50.

Receiving (No.-Yds.-TD): UI - Mike Bellamy 5-49-0; Steven Williams 5-49-0; UF - Terence Barber 4-29-0.


  1. ^ National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). "Bowl/All-Star Game Records: Most Valuable Players in Former Major Bowls" (PDF). 2011 NCAA Division I Football Records. p. 100. Retrieved October 1, 2011.