Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NCAA. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Florida State Seminoles fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate.
No. 13 Florida State Seminoles football wrapped up the year with a win over the Florida Gators, finishing with the program’s best record since 2016 (9-3, 5-3 ACC).
Outside of a three-game losing streak in October, FSU put together one of its most impressive football teams in nearly a decade largely thanks to an offense that ranks amongst the country’s elite.
From FSU Sports Info:
The victory over Florida was Florida State’s fifth consecutive win, the program’s longest streak since 2016, and the fifth straight game scoring at least 38 points, FSU’s longest stretch since the first 11 games of the 2013 season. The Seminoles swept Miami and Florida in the same season, scoring 45 against both for the first time in program history, and claimed their 11th state championship since 1993.
Florida State is one of three teams, along with No. 1 Georgia and No. 6 Alabama, ranked in the top-15 nationally in both yards per play on offense and defense. The Seminoles are 10th nationally with an average of 6.86 yards gained per play and 11th with an average of 4.73 yards allowed per play. FSU is also one of five teams ranked in the top-20 in total defense, scoring defense, total offense and scoring offense. Florida State ranks 14th in the country holding opponents to an average of 307.3 yards per game, 17th allowing 19.7 points per game, 14th with an average of 475.7 yards per game and 18th scoring an average of 36.2 points per game.
Florida State is first in the ACC and fourth nationally in pass defense, holding opponents to an average of 158.9 yards per game through the air, and also are first in the conference and seventh in the country holding opponents to an average of 5.9 yards per pass attempt. The Seminoles have rushed for at least 200 yards in a school-record-tying seven straight games, the longest active streak in the nation and the program’s longest since 1987, and lead the ACC in yards per rush and rushing offense, ranking ninth in the country with an average of 5.50 yards per rush and 12th in the country gaining an average of 217.8 rushing yards per game. FSU is one of three teams in the country and the only team in the ACC averaging at least 250 passing yards and at least 210 rushing yards per game.
The Seminoles have showcased an explosive and efficient offense this season as Florida State leads the nation with 88 plays of at least 20 yards and is second nationally with seven touchdown drives of at least 90 yards and with 15 touchdown drives of 80-plus yards. The Seminoles also lead the ACC and rank fourth nationally in third-down percentage, converting 51.9 percent of their opportunities, and have scored on 26 of 28 red zone possessions during their current five-game winning streak while ranking second in the conference with a 70.5 touchdown percentage this season in the red zone.
As we prepare to learn Florida State’s bowl game destination, we asked you, our dear readers, to answer an initial round of questions on some storylines after the season — here’s how you responded, as well as some commentary from the Tomahawk Nation staff.
Which rivalry win felt better — Miami or UF?
NoleThruandThru: Miami felt better to watch, but the final score of the Florida game was more satisfying.
Perry: For fans of college football, the Florida State and Florida game had to have felt like a nice palette cleanser after years of substandard matchups between the two. Beating down Miami in FSU’s vacation home to the degree that the Hurricanes didn’t score a touchdown though, especially after the “thanks for beating us!” following 2021, was fantastic and a true indicator of how lethal this team can be.
Tommy Mire: Miami felt better because they didn’t score a touchdown throughout the entire game. I think UF felt more like a true back-and-forth rivalry.
NoleCPA: Miami’s fanbase is cheeks. If you live outside of South Florida, the U is completely irrelevant... I live in the Charlotte area and the Hurricanes don’t even cross the minds of people up here. It’s like that program doesn’t exist outside of Florida. UF and FSU, however, are still brands that very much carry weight and prestige, especially the ‘Noles here in ACC country.
All that to say, the UF game felt better because it means more to top that program and that university for whom i actually have respect, as much as I can’t stand them.... and because we hadn’t beaten them since 2017. UF is like our twin brother while Miami is like the annoying punk who lives down the street who’s constantly chirping with nothing to back it up and is just begging for an *ss kicking.
GolferNole4: Miami. The kings of the offseason have been talking all summer about how thankful they were that we got rid of Manny for them. How Cristobal is their savior and he’ll bring back Miami to prominence. Alllll of that talk, just to lose 45-3. Glorious.
What was the most impressive win for FSU this season? (LSU, Louisville, Miami, Florida or other)
Perry: Even given the success LSU saw this season and the underlying positive consequences from beating UF and Miami, Louisville still stands out to me as the most impressive. It was a true response in the face of adversity in a hostile environment and, to me, raised the expectations for the rest of the year.
NoleThruandThru: It’s still hard for me to place any win above the opener against LSU, regardless of it being their first game under Brian Kelly. It was our first indication that this Seminole squad was different than the past five seasons: they could have folded or imploded in the end, but they never gave up and it paid off. I can’t wait for the rematch in Orlando!
Tommy Mire: LSU, hands down. It was when I thought to myself that FSU has a really high-powered offense. I had watched it all throughout camp but to see it put on such a big stage and big moment was truly impressive.
Nolesince05: Louisville was the most impressive because the way the team responded when Verse and Travis and others went down the way they responded in not giving up was super impressive from my pov cause before if those guys went down our play went down the hill.
OakNole: LSU because it was such a battle and chess match. Offense made big plays but mostly won by executing consistently. Hadn’t seen that in years.
How far would FSU go in a 12-team playoff? (First-round loss, one win, Final Four, championship game, national title)
Perry: Assuming the standings shake out without any surprises, FSU would likely be heading on the road to Tuscaloosa to take on Alabama — if not, then probably Columbus for a game vs. the Ohio State Buckeyes. I would maybe take FSU over Ohio State given that Michigan just provided the formula for beating Ryan Day, and while I think the Seminoles could hang with the Crimson Tide, home-field advantage might make the difference there and I’d lean towards an FSU loss.
In the Ohio State scenario, FSU would probably end up facing off against TCU, who I think Florida State could beat, followed by a semifinal matchup vs. the Georgia Bulldogs — where in this completely spitballed scenario, I’d imagine the Seminoles’ run ends.
NoleThruandThru: It depends on who decides to sit out and prepare for the draft, specifically along the defensive line since Jammie Robinson made his stance clear. Florida State is one of the hottest offensive teams in the nation and if Jared Verse and Fabian Lovett decided to play in the postseason, I think FSU would have a shot to win a couple of matchups. If nothing else, they’d be one hell of a tough out.
FalcNole: Final Four - I like us against anybody when we’re healthy and bring our A game right now. Just think depth gets us before the championship.
BobLoblaw113: No more than 1 playoff win, and even that would depend on the matchup. We aren’t there yet.
72gymrat: Like all playoffs, FSU’s success would be tied to how the draw laid out. We’d probably be favored against no more than 1/4 of the field.
Where do you want FSU to play in the postseason? (Cheez-It Bowl, Gator Bowl, Duke’s Mayo Bowl, Holiday Bowl or other)
NoleThruandThru: Selfishly, I want a Gator Bowl matchup against South Carolina or Kentucky. It would be great for recruiting and a good chance at another victory over an SEC team. I have a feeling FSU will land in the Cheez-It Bowl, and I really hope they draw the Texas Longhorns. Either way, I hope to see it in person!
Perry: Even though Florida State faces off against LSU in Orlando in 2023, give me the Cheez-It Bowl against a Big 12 team — a winnable game to get 10 on the year still a higher-profile opponent (Texas, Texas Tech or Oklahoma are the most likely names), plus plenty of cheesy jokes (of which this is the first.)
Tommy Mire: Gator Bowl would be easy to travel to and would give the team more exposure in FL. The Cheeze-it Bowl would be fun.
Ukedadnole: I went with the Gator Bowl simply for filling that hideous blue seat stadium in G&G. (of course after the last game’s broadcast color issues, it could be purple.)
NoleGrad07: I’m fine with any of those but without knowing the opponent I couldn’t pick one. I’ve seen projections against Minnesota. That doesn’t move the needle. Need an opponent that continues to help with national perception
CaptainDrew18: Gator or Cheez-It - Gator to go 3-0 vs SEC. Cheez-It to give a hint to the B1G that they could have more than UM and tOSU battling it out.
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