1989 Freedom Bowl
Freedom Bowl VI
1234 Total
Washington 171070 34
Florida 7000 7
DateDecember 30, 1989
StadiumAnaheim Stadium
LocationAnaheim, California
FavoriteWashington by 2½ to 3 points[1][2]
United States TV coverage
AnnouncersJoel Meyers and Paul Maguire
Freedom Bowl
 < 1988  1990

The 1989 Freedom Bowl was a college football bowl game played on December 30 at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, California. The game featured the Washington Huskies of the Pacific-10 Conference and the Florida Gators of the Southeastern Conference, who were led by junior Emmitt Smith, a consensus All-American at running back.



See also: 1989 Washington Huskies football team

The Huskies opened with two wins, lost three straight, then won five of six to finish the regular season at 7–4, tied for second in the Pac-10.


See also: 1989 Florida Gators football team

The Gators lost their opener, won six straight, then lost three of four to finish the regular season at 7–4, tied for fourth in the SEC. Head coach Galen Hall resigned in early October after allegations of NCAA rules violations,[3][4] and defensive coordinator Gary Darnell was the interim head coach.[5]


Washington built a twenty-point lead at halftime and won 34–7.[6][7][8] Smith gained only 17 yards on seven carries, as Florida was forced to go to the air in the second half. It was Smith's lowest rushing total since his first game as a freshman, when he was a reserve.[7][9][10][11]


First quarter

Second quarter

Third quarter

No scoring

Fourth quarter



Statistics Washington     Florida    
First Downs 28 10
Rushes–yards 45–191 25–83
Passing yards 242 148
Passes 24–44–0 11–28–1
Total yards 433 231
Punts–average 7–37 8–33
Fumbles–lost 0–0 7–3
Turnovers by 0 4
Penalties-yards 9–86 9–85
Time of possession 41:52 18:08


Unranked since early October, Washington was #23 in the final AP poll,[13] and played in the next three Rose Bowls, which included a shared national championship after the second. Florida hired alumnus Steve Spurrier as head coach the next day,[14] and he led the Gators for twelve seasons. Smith skipped his senior season and was selected seventeenth overall in the 1990 NFL Draft; he won three Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys and is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

This was the last bowl game between the Pac-10 and SEC until the 2010 season, when Auburn met Oregon in the national championship game in Arizona.


  1. ^ "Latest line". Gainesville Sun. (Florida). December 30, 1989. p. 4C.
  2. ^ "The latest line". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. December 30, 1989. p. 22.
  3. ^ "UF ousts coach Galen Hall amid new NCAA violations". Gainesville Sun. (Florida). October 9, 1989. p. 1A.
  4. ^ "Florida football coach submits resignation". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. October 9, 1989. p. 3B.
  5. ^ Browne, Jeff (October 9, 1989). "Darnell faces task of pulling team together". Gainesville Sun. (Florida). p. 1C.
  6. ^ a b c "Huskies roll past Florida in 34-7 win". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. December 31, 1989. p. 1D.
  7. ^ a b King, Bill (December 31, 1989). "Florida finishes with a flop 34-7". Gainesville Sun. (Florida). p. 1C.
  8. ^ "Washington rips Florida". Sunday Star-News. (Wilmington, North Carolina). December 31, 1989. p. 3B.
  9. ^ Teaford, Elliott (December 31, 1989). "Huskies make it look easy : Freedom Bowl: Florida's Emmitt Smith is held to 17 yards as Washington passes, runs to 34-7 victory". Los Angeles Times.
  10. ^ Borst, Don (January 1, 1990). "After Freedom Bowl win, Huskies optimistic for '90". Spokane Chronicle. (Washington). McClatchey News Service. p. C2.
  11. ^ "Huskies swamp Gators 34-7 in Freedom Bowl". Ellensburg Daily Record. (Washington). UPI. January 2, 1990. p. 12.
  12. ^ a b "Washington buries Florida". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). Associated Press. December 31, 1989. p. 3B.
  13. ^ "Final AP Top 25". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. January 3, 1990. p. D4.
  14. ^ Kallestad, Brent (January 1, 1990). "Spurrier accepts Florida offer". Wilmington Morning Star. (North Carolina). Associated Press. p. 1B.