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Staff Predictions: Florida State Seminoles vs. Oklahoma Sooners

Since 1980 the Seminoles have played in 39 bowl games and won 26 of those, which is the most in the nation

Peyton Baker/Tomahawk Nation

The 13th-ranked Florida State Seminoles will face off against the Oklahoma Sooners (6-6, 3-6-Big 12) on Thursday in the Cheez-It Bowl, from the Camping World Stadium in Orlando. The game kicks off at 5:30 p.m. and will be televised on the ESPN network for a national television audience who will be watching the only game in town.

Florida State will be attempting to finish with a 10-win final season record for the first time since 2016.

The Noles will be playing in their 49th postseason game in program history and are 29-17-2 all-time in bowl games, including 3-0 in Orlando in what is now the Cheez-It Bowl (1990 Blockbuster, 24-17 vs. Penn State; 2008 Champs Sports, 42-13 vs. Wisconsin; 2011 Champs Sports, 18-14 vs. Notre Dame).

The Seminoles (9-3, 5-3) will try to break the Sooners' current 6-game winning streak against FSU, in the fifth meeting between the two programs in bowl games.

Oklahoma won the Orange Bowl after the 1979, 1980 and 2000 seasons, and FSU beat OU in the Gator Bowl following the 1964 season. During that 1965 Gator Bowl game, Hall of Famer Fred Biletnikoff set then-school records with 13 catches for 192 yards and four TDs to lead FSU to a 36-19 win.

Florida State is the only team in the country ranked in the top-10 in yards per play on offense and defense. The Seminoles are 9th nationally with an average of 6.86 yards per play and 10th allowing an average of 4.73 yards per play.

The Seminoles have outscored their opponents 218-77 during the current 5 game winning streak and outgained them 2,453 to 1,363 in total offensive yards.

Florida State is holding opponents to only 139 rushing yards and 159 passing yards per game, and are ranked 14th in the FBS in yards per game on defense.

Some valuable information has come out of Orlando, where beat writers were strongly advised by “The Cheez-It Cartel” that the word “Cheez-Its” is not correct and should not be used, and they have been adamant about stressing this point on several occasions,

Apparently, one “Cheez-It” is called a “Cheez-It.”

More than one “Cheez-It” is not to be called “Cheez-Its,” instead according to their enforcers, you are to call them “Cheez-It Crackers.”

Your Tomahawk Nation staff, as they do before every game, have broken down all the FSU and Oklahoma game film available, charted each All-22 formations/snaps, performed A.I. virtual simulations, compiled all of the data, and have come to the conclusion that the Noles are going to win, probably by double digits.

According to DraftKings, FSU is currently a 9.5-point favorite over Oklahoma with the over/under set at 66 points.

  • Read what your TOMAHAWK NATION PROGNOSTICATORS think about this Saturday’s showdown.
  • Then look over and digest all of the FREE PREGAME CONTENT we’ve posted below.
  • We would love to hear your thoughts on how you expect the game to go and your final score prediction in the comments.

  • Tommy Mire (season record: 9-3)

The way the latter half of the season has gone for Florida State has landed them in Orlando with momentum and I think that it carries over in Orlando. The allure of 10 wins has kept most of the team focused and with Jordan Travis returning next year I do not see the team taking this game lightly. That, paired with some key players out on both sides of the ball for the Sooners, tips it in the Noles’ favor.

FSU 38, Oklahoma 28

  • LastNoleOfKrypton

Oklahoma has been a thorn in FSU’s side for a minute so it’s time for the ‘Noles to get their lick back. Brent Venables is recruiting well and if he puts together a few more classes like the current one they’ll do well in the SEC but this year’s Oklahoma team is not only short-handed but lacking talent. They simply do not have enough to compete with an FSU team poised for its first 10-win season since 2016 and playing its best ball of the season.

FSU and Jordan Travis will use the game as a springboard for an offseason full of hype. All the aboard the Climb, ‘Noles roll.

FSU 48 Oklahoma 24

  • Brian Pellerin (season record: 10-2)

This is pretty straightforward to me. Oklahoma is still trying to figure what they are under Brent Venables. Florida State has found an identity and are absolutely thriving in it. Dominant win for the Noles.

FSU 39, Oklahoma 13

  • Max Escarpio

The Seminoles head to Orlando to face a weak Oklahoma Sooners team that’s had their fair share of ups and downs in 2022.

Oklahoma will be without multiple key players in the lineup and the Noles are close to full strength. Florida State should have every starter available on the offensive end, giving them another chance to regularly put the ball in the end zone.

OU may give FSU some trouble if Dillon Gabriel connects for some deep passes, but that won’t be enough to compete for four quarters.

FSU 38, OU 21

  • Evan Johnson (season record: 5-2)

The goal of this game is to survive with no long term injuries. This is the cherry on top.

After a nine win season and good signing day, more transfer portal than prep but whatever works, FSU has a bunch of momentum going into the off-season.

I would assume FSU would handle OU this year and with so many hold outs for the Sooners it should be even easier. OU will likely score but can they keep up? I’m not so sure.

FSU 45, OU 28

  • TimScribble (season record: 9-3)

This one’s for all the cheez-it(s?). On Thursday, here’s hoping that FSU wakes up on Thursday feeling the cheesiest. Oklahoma’s coordinators are two of the best (Venables and Lebby) and with a month of prep time, they’ll be ready for the Seminoles. In the end, I think the exodus of Sooners pre-bowl will be the difference and FSU pulls out the win.

FSU 28, Oklahoma 17

  • Jon Marchant (season record: 10-2)

If you listened to the Seminole Wrap podcast this season you’ll have heard me promise this was gonna be a fun season, even after some tough losses. And while they fell short of some of their conference goals, a fun year it absolutely was. FSU exceeded all expectations (except for perhaps the ones the team set for themselves). With a 9-win season under their belts, a new recruiting class and another top transfer portal class, FSU finally has program momentum. Faith in Mike Norvell has paid off.

With that said, with so much time off since their win over the Gators, offenses can sometimes not travel well in bowl games. Still, Venables has not acquitted himself well so far in Norman and the Sooners had an up-and-down season. FSU is the better team and I think they’ll win this one, though win or lose this game FSU is poised for a run at a conference championship next season ed by a powerhouse offense. But a ten-win season on the books would look awfully nice.

FSU 33, Oklahoma 24


Juan Montalvo (Season Record 69-0)

DNA. Deoxyribonucleic acid. It’s the code that drives the genetics of an individual. In a college football program, it’s the shared code that drives the ethos of the program.

As in the individual, as in the program. Mike Norvell has stamped his particular sequence of ACTG blocks upon this team. A resilient group indeed, Norvell’s Seminoles are as unconventional as was their coach’s haircut in college.

Unconventionally successful, using the transfer portal to unlock the talent and fill in the holes of the roster, Norvell has acted like a modern geneticist (sans cornrows) using CRISPR as a tool to fix the genetic code of a previously stagnating Seminoles football program.

Meanwhile in Norman, the departure of Lincoln Riley and Caleb Williams has seemingly ripped away the winning DNA laid down by the seed of Lincoln Riley and Bob Stoops prior.

I had more in my head but this is a cheese snack bowl so f it

Noles 62, Sooners 11

  • FrankDNole (season record: 11-3)

This is going to be fun and the players deserve all the attention and accolades they are getting for exceeding most Nole fans expectations for this season.

It will be great to finally get a win against OU, and I expect that by the fourth quarter the game will be in garbage time, the future players get more valuable playing experience, and keep the draft eligible players, who decided to play in the bowl, safe and healthy.

FSU Seminoles 45, Sooners 21

  • Perry Kostidakis (season record 11-1)

Bowl games are funny, because unlike when the soft factor of “who wants it more” is often floated, there are actual occasions where one team has been completely disinterested and the other ready to roll, leading to hilarious results (see: Florida in its last three bowl appearances).

While Oklahoma has struggled, lack of motivation doesn’t appear to be at play here — but they will be without a spread of players, including four starters in offensive tackles Anton Harrison and Wanya Morris, running back Eric Gray and defensive tackle Jalen Redmond.

FSU, meanwhile, has had no opt-outs from major contributors (the only players missing from the Cheez-It Bowl roster have entered the transfer portal) and is looking at the game as a stepping stone for 2023. The Seminoles played like a top 15 team all season, have earned a ranking to reflect that and now will get to showcase it against a big-name in a Sunshine State game. FSU will be too much, too fast for the Sooners and while things might take a little bit to get out of hand, Florida State should win handily and get ready to return to Camping World to kick off 2023 against LSU.

FSU 48, Oklahoma 24

Florida State Seminoles vs. Oklahoma Sooners

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