ARLINGTON, Texas - Fans at AT&T Stadium in Arlington got to see an instant classic at the 87th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Monday. In a huge upset No. 16 Tulane beat No. 10 USC 46-45.
Many fans were excited to see Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams battle it out against the Green Wave in Tulane's first major bowl game in more than 80 years.
"We brought tents to be ready for it, didn't need them, didn't need them. So it's a perfect day for this game," said Marco Gonzalez.
While some college football fans just wanted to see another great game, for Tulane fans the Cotton Bowl was their long-awaited marquee bowl game.
"Drove from New Orleans," said Lizette Coughlin. "We're going to win. We feel great. It's the best bowl game Tulane has been in, in I don't know how many years."
"This is a once in a lifetime thing for Tulane students. USC goes to a bowl every year. A lot," said Lucy King.
In a huge turnaround Tulane went from 2-10 a year ago to 11-2 this season, earning a spot as the AAC Champion.
It's Tulane's first major bowl game since the 1939 season when it played in the Sugar Bowl as the SEC co-champion.
"Tulane's in a bowl game, in my home city. Have to take advantage of that. Looking forward to kicking some USC butt," said Tony Moschella before the game.
For USC fans the hope of playing in the College Football Playoff was dashed when Caleb Williams played on an injured leg in the second half, losing to Utah.
But he went on to win the Heisman Trophy.
"To watch my Trojans win the Cotton Bowl baby, that's what it's all about. I'm from Los Angeles, born and raised, moved to Texas a couple of years ago. So happy to be here. Never been to Jerry World. Happy to watch my Trojans win today," said Mike Hangen before the game.
Trojan fans still thrilled by former Oklahoma University coach Lincoln Riley's first season with the Trojans.
"Very happy with Lincoln Riley, I am so happy we took him from Oklahoma. We are so happy he is in Southern California," said Hangen.
But predictions by Trojans fans were too dismissive of Tulane.
"Caleb Williams, he's the Heisman, he's going to kill it. He's going probably score at least 12 touchdowns and Tulane fans will leave in the first quarter," Hangen said.
Instead, the Green Wave fought back, overcoming a 15-point deficit to beat USC by one point.