Florida State was faced with plenty of adversity during its 45-38 victory against Florida in the regular season finale. The Seminoles trailed 14-7 in the first quarter and 24-21 at the half. It was the first deficit that the team had faced at the break since a loss to Clemson on October 15 - 41 days earlier.
After pressing at times in the first half, the Seminoles came out noticably more composed in the third quarter. Florida State outscored the Gators 17-0 in the frame in part due to the defense forcing three consecutive three and outs. It was the only quarter that the team would win on the night.
An ugly win is better than a beautiful loss. Florida State would've liked to handle Florida a little easier but the program still was able to snap a three-game losing streak to its bitter rival. It was also the most combined points scored in a single contest in the history of the rivalry that dates back to 1958.
The victory picked up national attention as ESPN's College Gameday host and analyst Kirk Herbstreit named Florida State as one of his top performing teams of the week. The Seminoles slotted in at No. 3 on the list along with Michigan, South Carolina, North Carolina State, Tulane, Arizona, Oregon State, and Tennessee.
Redshirt junior quarterback Jordan Travis also came in as one of Herbstreit's top performing players of the week. He was placed at No. 2 behind Michigan's Donovan Edwards. Tulane's Tyjae Spears, Arizona's Michael Wiley, Texas A&M's Devon Achane, South Carolina's Spencer Rattler/Antwane Wells Jr, Kansas State's Deuce Vaughn, Washington's Michael Penix Jr, New Mexico State's Deigo Pavia, and Duke's Riley Leonard/Jalon Calhoun rounded out the selections.
Travis outgained Gators' star Anthony Richardson 353-239 in total yards of offense while throwing for one touchdown and rushing for two more scores. He kept multiple scoring drives alive with his legs and forced seven missed tackles on runs, per PFF. It was the second straight game for Travis with two touchdowns on the ground.
The veteran starter has completed 63.2% of his passes for 2,796 yards with 22 touchdowns to four interceptions this season. He's also rushed 75 times for 367 yards and seven more scores. Travis can become the first Florida State quarterback since 2016 to pass for 3,000+ yards with at least 204 yards through the air in the bowl game.
The Seminoles will learn their postseason destination and opponent on Sunday following conference championship weekend.
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