After an impressive season, the Florida State Seminoles successfully ended the 2022 college football season with a nail-biting victory in the Cheez-It Bowl against the Oklahoma Sooners. With momentum clearly in their favor, the Seminoles have been seeking to make their dominance in college football the status quo moving forward.
The Cheez-It Bowl took place in Orlando, Florida on December 29 and recorded over 60,000 fans in attendance at Camping World Stadium. The excitement surrounding the game came in large part from Florida State fans, who have not seen the team qualify for a bowl game since the 2019 season.
Although the Seminoles were favored to win over the unranked Sooners, who entered the game 6-6, Oklahoma gave Florida State a run for their money. At halftime, Oklahoma led Florida State by a score of 17-11. The second half, and particularly the fourth quarter, was when the game grew increasingly competitive. Having put up 24 points in the second half, topped off by a last-minute field goal by Ryan Fitzgerald, Florida State was able to squeak past the Sooners by a score of 35-32.
As previously reported in the Collegian, a 10-3 record with a bowl win has been heralded as a great year for Florida State. But a season like this would have been fairly disappointing for fans a short time ago. Until 2018, Florida State had at a minimum a winning record every year since the late 1970s. It was not until recently that the team’s performance dwindled and they experienced an unprecedented restructuring period.
Fortunately for fans, the future for the Seminoles looks brighter than ever, as recent developments have increased expectations for Florida State heading into the 2023 season. Quarterback Jordan Travis, who performed impressively this season, announced that he is returning to his team next year, rather than declaring for the NFL draft. Travis’ leadership and talent has filled a void in the Florida State football team that has existed since the days of Jameis Winston nearly a decade ago.
While Travis was often forced into turning the Seminole offense into a one-man show, recruiting has given Travis the resources he will need next year to create an even more successful team. Five-star wide receiver, Hykeem Williams, has committed to Florida State. Williams is considered the 22nd best player in the nation, regardless of position, and is the fourth best wide receiver in the nation. Williams chose Florida State in September over other premier football schools, such as University of Georgia and Texas A&M.
This year also brought the exciting news of a new football-exclusive facility breaking ground on Florida State’s campus. The $75 million project indicates a deeper interest in the future of Florida State football, and will hopefully assist in maximizing the potential of players’ athletic abilities on the field.
With plenty of funds, top recruits, and attention being sent Florida State’s way, the time is now for the Seminoles to climb back on top. If the team’s progress continues, Coach Mike Norvell and Jordan Travis may very well be leading the way into a new, successful era in Seminoles football.