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Matchup and Memories: The series history of Florida State vs Jacksonville State

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FSU looks to extend their lead over the Gamecocks.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 05 Notre Dame at Florida State Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Florida State looks to get its first win of the season against the mighty Gamecocks of Jacksonville State. Let’s dive into the matchup and memories:

In a battle of winless teams, Florida State will look to bounce back after an overtime loss against Notre Dame. Whereas Jacksonville State will look for its first point of the season after being shut out in their game against the UAB Blazers. Last year’s game started out with Jacksonville State jumping out to an early lead before Jordan Travis entered the game to lead FSU to victory. Can the Seminoles avoid another slow start?

NoleThruandThru’s Recruiting Reminiscences

Let’s get real, as far as FSU may have fallen during the Lost Decade and the last few years, they haven’t descended to battling Jacksonville State for recruits. That said, ‘Nole fans will remember two names from the 2009 contest between Florida State and Jacksonville State.

The 2009 matchup pitted the Seminoles against two former 5-star prospects that originally included FSU in their respective finalist lists. While everyone remembers troubled QB Ryan Perriloux, who originally chose the LSU Tigers over the Texas Longhorns, Mississippi State Bulldogs, and FSU, the Gamecocks also had DL Torrey Davis on the roster, who had originally chosen the Florida Gators in a heated recruitment over the Noles.

Matt Minnick’s memorable moment

Walking out of Doak Campbell Stadium this past Sunday was one of those rare occasions where, despite a loss on the scoreboard, I genuinely felt positive about the experience and our beloved program.

The 2009 game against Jacksonville State was the mirror image to last weekend’s near triumph over Notre Dame. That year marked the first season I was living back in Tallahassee after six years out-of-state. Sure, I’d traveled into town for several games a year during that time, but there’s nothing like living in a college town during football season. So, despite the less than stellar results over the previous few seasons, I was pumped!

Then came the Labor Day heartbreaker to the Miami (FL) Hurricanes. Why, couldn’t that pass to Jarmon Fortson just have been a tiny bit higher!? Oh well, tough loss, but at least we got a cupcake coming in next, right? I just knew we’d roll the Gamecocks like it was 1988 (different Gamecocks, but hey, who’s keeping track?) and jump start the season. FSU was back, baby!

And then came September 12th against Jax State and any notion I had of the Seminoles having a turnaround season promptly disappeared.

Truthfully, I really don’t remember too much about the game. I recall the weather was horrid, that the highest ranked recruit was likely playing for our FCS opponent, and that we pulled out the win while many writers were probably halfway through an article about FSU dropping to 0-2. In the immortal words of the great Jim Mora, we couldn’t do diddly poo.

The box score tells me Ty Jones scored two TDs during that driving rainstorm, with the second one giving FSU a 13-9 lead with 35 seconds left to play, and that FSU had just 15 first downs. I remember we sealed the game with a scoop-and-score fumble recovery just a couple plays after Jones’ go-ahead score, but I didn’t recall that it was Kevin McNeil. I also didn’t recall that Dustin Hopkins missed back-to-back extra points in that last 35 seconds.

I also remember leaving the stadium with a distinct feeling that while we might’ve won on the scoreboard, we essentially lost on the field. Of course, what I didn’t know at the time was snatching victory from the jaws of defeat saved our bowl streak, allowing my wife and I to trek over to Jacksonville and watch St. Bobby go out in style with a Gator Bowl win over the West Virginia Mountaineers (but that’s a story for another day).

So here’s to Ty Jones, and to hoping this year’s Jacksonville State game gives us the kind of result that really does build on the promise shown in Sunday’s opener.

Matt Minnick, the resident Tomahawk Nation historian, is a Tallahassee native and life long Seminoles fan, attending over 225 FSU football games across the country since 1986.


We love hearing your favorite Florida State football moments and memories. Drop a comment below sharing something from past Florida State and Jacksonville State matchups. Which recent ugly FSU win sticks out for you?