FSU Football: Five Non-Traditional Power 5 Opponents the Noles Have Dominated
Ross Obley/Florida State athletics

FSU Football: Five Non-Traditional Power 5 Opponents the Noles Have Dominated

This post originally appeared on The Daily Nole on June 30, 2016

Florida State’s non-conference schedule for 2016 includes Ole Miss, Charleston Southern, South Florida and as always, Florida. The Seminoles and Gators play every year, but its other three opponents have only seen FSU five times combined since the Seminoles started playing football in 1947.

Though there are schools that Florida State doesn’t face that often, there are some that the Seminoles have just seemed to have their way with through the years. With a minimum of five prior meetings, here’s a look at opponents that FSU doesn’t traditionally play, but have had success against over the years:


All-time series: FSU leads 7-2
Overview: Despite both becoming national powers, Florida State and LSU haven’t squared off on the field since 1991 when the Seminoles prevailed 27-16 in Baton Rogue behind short fourth quarter touchdown runs from William Floyd and Amp Lee. The year before, FSU dominated the Tigers 42-3 to earn head coach Bobby Bowden his 200th career win. Unfortunately for both squads, the victory was marred by a large fight that ensued in the fourth quarter. Overall, FSU has won five straight and seven of the last eight in the series. The last LSU victory came in 1982. The Tigers also won the first contest between the schools in the 1968 Peach Bowl — the only bowl match-up between the schools.


All-time series: FSU leads 6-2
Overview: Florida State and Nebraska haven’t squared off since Bobby Bowden and Tom Osborne were roaming the sidelines, but the Seminoles hold a 6-2 edge all-time with four of those victories coming in bowl games. FSU’s 18-14 victory over the No. 3 Cornhuskers in Lincoln in 1980 went a long way toward putting the Seminoles on the football map. Florida State’s thrilling 31-28 Fiesta Bowl victory over Nebraska to close the 1987 season began a string of 14 straight top-5 finishes and it was ultimately the Cornhuskers that FSU would defeat for its first national championship at the end of the 1993 season. Overall, FSU has won four straight over Nebraska. The last victory for the Huskers in the series came at home early in the 1986 season. That was the last time the teams met in the regular season. They’ve never faced one another in Tallahassee.

Notre Dame

All-time series: FSU leads 6-2
Overview: Notre Dame may be just 2-6 all-time against the Seminoles, but it did win the most hyped contest between the schools in a 1993 South Bend contest dubbed the “Game of the Century”. In a contest between the country’s top-2 ranked teams, the Fighting Irish held off a comeback from Heisman Trophy winner Charlie Ward and FSU. Unfortunately for Notre Dame, it would lose at home to Boston College the following week and FSU would reclaim the No. 1 ranking and go on to win the national championship. Overall, FSU has won three straight in the series with the last coming in a top-5 match-up in 2014 that concluded with a controversial ending as Notre Dame was called for offensive pass interference on a play it looked to have scored the go-ahead touchdown. Three of FSU’s six victories have come on neutral fields, including two bowl games. FSU handed Notre Dame its second-worst home loss ever in 2003, winning by a 37-0 margin. In a 2002 match-up of top-15 teams, Notre Dame defeated Florida State 34-24 in the first meeting between the schools in Tallahassee.

Oklahoma State

All-time series: FSU leads 4-1
Overview: Florida State defeated Oklahoma State 37-31 in Dallas to kick off the 2014 season, but that was the first meeting between the Seminoles and Cowboys since the 1985 Gator Bowl — a 34-23 FSU victory. Prior to that, the schools had not met since playing a home-and-home in 1977 and 1978. Florida State won both of those meetings. The lone Oklahoma State victory in the series came in the first meeting as the Cowboys topped Florida State 15-6 in the 1958 Bluegrass Bowl.

South Carolina

All-time series: FSU leads 16-3
Overview: The Seminoles completed their first 10-win season in seven years with a 26-17 victory over South Carolina in the Chick-fil-A Bowl to conclude 2010, but that’s the only meeting between the schools since 1991. That was also the only bowl meeting between the schools. Overall, FSU has won seven straight in the series and 10 of 11 overall. The last South Carolina victory came in 1984. During Florida State’s winning streak over the Gamecocks, the average margin of victory for the Seminoles has been more than 30 points. The largest margin in the series came in 1988 when the Seminoles embarrassed No. 15 South Carolina in Columbia by a score of 59-0.

Mike Ferguson is the lead writer for Double Fries No Slaw. Be sure to follow Mike on Twitter at @MikeWFerguson. Follow all of Mike’s work by liking his Facebook page.

Mike Ferguson

Mike Ferguson is the lead writer for Double Fries No Slaw and has more than 10 years of experience in online and print journalism. Mike graduated from Florida State University in 2009 and has had his work featured at numerous prominent publications such as Fox Sports, the Associated Press, Athlon Sports, Yahoo Sports and Sports Illustrated among others. Prior to joining Double Fries No Slaw, Mike was the founder and editor of The Daily Nole. He also serves as the managing editor for Fifth Quarter and is a contributor for Athlon Sports, Fish Stripes and Orlando Pinstriped Post. Mike and his wife Jennifer reside in Haines City, Fla. and have two daughters.