The 1997 Builder's Square Alamo Bowl saw Purdue overcome a strong Oklahoma State team to take home all the marbles. A low-scoring first half was followed by a surge of Purdue offense. Billy Dicken racked up two touchdown passes (and three interceptions), and another rushing TD put Purdue up to a 30-13 lead. Oklahoma State scored one final touchdown to put the score at 33-20, giving Purdue the win and making the 1997 Alamo Bowl the highest scoring Alamo Bowl in history (at that time). As a side note, a man clad only in skimpy blue men's underwear rushed onto the field in the second quarter, only to be escorted off the field by police as 55,552 fans cheered him on. This adds another interesting anecdote to the 1997 Alamo Bowl game.
The 1998 Alamo Bowl game matching Kansas State vs. Purdue was an eye-opening experience. Coming into the game, Kansas State was the statistical team to beat. Their quarterback, Michael Bishop, was that year's Heisman Trophy runner-up, and the team had one of the best offenses in the country. However, Kansas did not play like they wanted any trophy, as Purdue took advantage of plenty of Wildcat fumbles to score 17 points. With just 30 seconds left in the game, the Boilermakers scored on a 19-yard pass as Drew Brees connected with Isaac Jones for the win, 37-34.
The 2002 MasterCard Alamo Bowl was another great contest, this time between the Colorado Buffaloes and the Wisconsin Badgers. With the score 28-28, Colorado had first possession in overtime. However, a 45-yard field goal attempt by Colorado's Patrick Brougham was no good, and the ball changed hands. Wisconsin then gained five yards on three straight runs to set up a 37-yard field goal. Mike Allen's attempt for 37 was good, and the Badgers won 31-28.
The 2004 MasterCard Alamo Bowl shone dazzling performances from Ohio State's Ted Ginn Jr. and second string QB Justin Zwick. Zwick, replacing the suspended Troy Smith, passed for 189 yards and a touchdown while Ginn caught 6 passes for 78 yards and rushed for 51 more and a touchdown. Ohio State easily overcame Oklahoma State, 33-7.