Top 3 moments in Fresno State sports history

Fresno State celebrated the 20th anniversary of the 1998 National Championship on March 24, 2018. (Fresno State Athletics)

In a sporting sense, the Bulldogs have quite the pedigree. Fresno State is nationally-known for producing some of the best athletes in sports today and in years past. With them came some of the best moments in school history.

From Derek Carr to Ryan Matthews, from Aaron Judge to Paul George, the list goes on and on. These former Bulldogs left behind championships and, most of all, memories.

Although Fresno State has a long line of great athletes and teams alike, I’ve narrowed down the top sporting moments in Fresno State history to three.

  1. Fresno State football beats USC 24-7 in the 1992 Freedom Bowl

Some say this game is the Bulldogs’ biggest victory in their program. Led by Trent Dilfer, who would become a Super Bowl winning quarterback, and Lorenzo Neal, a Hall of Fame caliber fullback, the Bulldogs erased an early deficit to stun the Trojans in front of 50,745 fans. The Bulldogs ended the 1992 season on a six-game winning streak that earned them a share of the Western Athletic Conference title. Looking back, having Dilfer and Neal on the same team was something special, let alone beating the revered Trojans in their territory.

  1. Women’s softball wins 1998 National Championship

The Bulldogs on the 1998 team were pioneers. Thanks to them, the Bulldogs had their first NCAA team championship in any sport. Amanda Scott headlined the team during her career from 1997-2000. The four-time All-American earned the MVP honors of the championship tournament. The seventh-ranked Bulldogs endured a tough road to the final, where they defeated top-ranked Arizona, 1-0.

  1.  Men’s baseball wins 2008 National Championship

This team in the beginning wasn’t the world beaters that we saw at the very end. In fact, the Bulldogs were just plain bad. After losing 12 of their first 20 games, the Bulldogs had to win the WAC to even make it to the postseason and that’s exactly what they did. Fresno State entered the tournament as one of the lowest seeds, but that didn’t stop the Bulldogs from disposing of teams in their way. Led by third baseman Tommy Mendonca, who hit four home runs along with 11 RBIs, and Steven Detwiler, who hit two home runs in the championship game, Fresno State collected its second NCAA team championship in school history.

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