College Football Rivalries: A Look Back at Miami Vs. Florida State
The Miami-Florida State rivalry dates back to 1951, when the Hurricanes defeated the Seminoles 35-13 in their inaugural meeting.
The rivalry has been such a large success on a national media basis that the two highest rated college football games in ESPN history are owned by these two teams.
The 1994 game between the two clubs was the highest rated college football game in ESPN history with a 7.7 rating. The 2006 game was the most viewed college football game in ESPN history averaging 6.3 million households for a 6.9 rating.
In the span of 19 years, 1983 to 2002, Miami and Florida State combined to play in 14 National Championships, winning 7 of them.
Here is a look back of one of the greatest rivalries in college football.
(Note: these are not in the order of importance to me, but rather in oldest to newest)
#10 Where It All Began, October 5th, 1951.
In the very first meeting between the two schools, FSU traveled to Miami to visit the Hurricanes in just the second game of the year for both teams.
The tone was set early as Miami jumped to a 28-0 lead at halftime.
During the start of the second half, FSU got the ball and marched down the field scoring a touchdown cutting the deficit to 21, but Miami was just too much as the very next possession Miami flew down the field for their fifth touchdown of the game, giving Miami the lead at 35-7 after three.
FSU would score one more time in the fourth quarter, but missed the extra point, wide right.
Neither team scored again as Miami beat FSU, 35-13.
Miami would go on to beat FSU seven of the next eight games, before FSU went on their own streak beating Miami in the next seven.
What also should be noted is from 1951 until 1972, Miami and FSU played 16 times out of the 21 years, in which all of them but two, were played at the Orange Bowl.
#9 Wide Right I, November 16th, 1991.
The setting was Doak Cambell Stadium, Tallahassee, Florida.
The Seminoles came into this game as the number one team in the nation, while the Hurricanes were the number two team. It marked only the second time in the AP poll's existence that the top two teams came from the same state.
The Seminoles had an impressive 10-0 record and had the third ranked scoring offense in the country with 41 points per game.
Miami, in the meantime, was also undefeated at 8-0. Miami came into the game only allowing 58 points all season.
Miami won the toss and scored on their first possession to take a 7-0 lead.
FSU returned the favor and took the lead scoring 16 straight points to take the lead early in the fourth quarter, 16-7.
Miami quickly responded with a field goal of their own to cut the FSU lead to six, 16-10.
The Hurricanes got the ball back and Miami fullback, Larry Jones snuck in for a one yard touchdown with 3:01 left to play.
FSU was able to march down the field and thanks to an pass interference call, FSU had the ball on Miami's 18 yard line with just 29 seconds to play.
With a possibility of a bad snap, FSU decided to try for the 34-yard field goal even though it was only third down.
Gerry Thomas came onto the field for the game winning field goal, but it sailed wide right, giving Miami the thrilling victory, 17-16.
#8 Wide Right II, October 3rd, 1992.
Less then a year after a disheartening loss to Miami by a missed field goal, FSU went down to Miami for a little bit of revenge.
The Hurricanes, the 1991 National Champions, were rolling with a 20 game win streak and a No. 2 ranking. FSU, on the other hand, came into the game undefeated with a No. 3 ranking.
FSU jumped out to a quick lead as Tamarick Vanover returned the opening kick of 94 yards for a touchdown. Miami came back and scored 10 unanswered points to take a 10-7 lead.
FSU would add a field goal to tie the score at ten heading into halftime.
The second half became a defensive battle as FSU would score the next six points with two field goals to take a 16-10 lead with just nine minutes remaining in the game.
Miami responded on the very next possession as Gino Torreta found Lamar Thomas for a 33 yard touchdown pass to put Miami in the lead at 17-16.
Both defenses held tight, but when Miami punted to the Seminoles Corey Sawyer, he attempted an illegal forward pass while in the end zone, resulting in a safety for Miami, now giving them a 19-16 lead.
The FSU defense held strong again, forcing Miami to punt the ball to FSU with just 1:35 left to play.
Seminoles stand out quarterback Charlie Ward conducted a 59 yard drive to take the ball to Miami's 22 yard line with just seconds to spare.
In came the Seminoles kicker Dan Mowrey to try and tie the game with a 39 yard field goal, but the kick went wide right for the second straight year against the Hurricanes.
All ended well in 1992 for the Seminoles as they never lost another game and ended up second in the overall standings.
Miami went on to play in the National Championship game, losing to Alabama and ending up in thirds, one spot below the Seminoles.
#7 Florida State Puts The Beat Down On The Hurricanes, October 4th, 1997
Florida State ripped Miami 47-0 for the Hurricanes worst lost since 1927.
The Seminoles crushed Miami with 422 yards while limiting Mami to 131 yards of offense and -33 yards rushing.
To this day it is still the largest margin of victory between the two teams.
#6 Wide Right III, October 7th, 2000
The Hurricanes came into this game 3-1, while the Seminoles, who were carrying a 17 game winning streak into the game, were 4-0 for the season.
Miami quickly jumped the gun on FSU and led at halftime 17-0.
Florida State, led by Chris Weinke's 496 yards passing, got FSU within seven, 17-10. Miami would end the third quarter with a 20-10 lead on Todd Sievers 37-yard field goal.
The problem was Miami could not stop Weinke as he threw two unanswered touchdown passes giving the Seminoles a 24-20 lead late in the fourth quarter.
Miami quarterback, Ken Dorsey, quickly came back throwing a touchdown to Tight End Jeremy Shockey with just 46 seconds left in the game, to give Miami a 27-24 lead.
Fortunately for FSU, Weinke was able to get the Seminoles into field goal range with just seconds remaining.
Seminole freshman Matt Munyon came out to attempt the 49-yard field goal, but for the third time in the rivalry, the kick went wide right.
Miami wins 27-24.
#5 Miami Snaps The Seminoles 54 Home Game Winning Streak, October 13,2001
Miami came into the Florida State game with a chip on their shoulder. The previous year Florida State got the nod over the Hurricanes for the National Championship, although Miami beat FSU head to head.
The problem was they were playing in Doak Cambell stadium, a place where the Seminoles hadn't lost in 54 prior games.
Miami started the first quarter scoring two touchdowns to take a 14-0 lead.
In the second, Miami scored first to bring the score to 21-0, FSU came back scoring two touchdowns to make in 21-13 at half time.
At half time Miami came out firing, scoring the first 14 points to go up 35-13.
FSU returned the favor cutting the lead to 35-20, but Miami reeled off two more touchdowns to take the lead to 49-20 heading into the fourth.
FSU scored one more touchdown to make it a final score of 49-27, ending the 54 home field winning streak FSU had.
#4 Wide Left, October 12, 2002.
The Miami Hurricanes came into this contest on a 28 game winning streak and sat at 5-0 for the season, while the Seminoles were 5-1.
The contest started good for Miami as running back Willis McGahee scored from four yards out giving Miami a 7-0 lead.
The lead wouldnt last as the Seminoles score the next 17 straight points to take a 17-7 lead.
Miami quickly scored before the half cutting the Seminole lead to three at 17-14.
FSU scored the only points, a field goal, in the third quarter to give the Seminoles a 20-14 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
FSU scored first in the fourth quarter giving the Seminoles a larger lead at 27-14.
Miami quickly came back and scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to take a 28-27 lead.
The Seminoles kicker, Xavier Beitia had a chance to win the game as time expired, but the 43 yard field goal sailed left this time, giving the Hurricanes the vitory, 28-27.
#3 Florida State Finally Gets The Break, September 6, 2005.
After years of heartache, the Florida State Seminoles where finally the ones on the right side of a field goal mishap.
Miami's field goal holder Brian Monroe muffed the snap as kicker Jon Pettie never even got a chance to try for a field goal with just a little over two minutes remaining, giving FSU a 17-14 win.
Miami came into the game ranked No. 9, while the Seminoles were ranked No. 14.
In a defensive game, it took both teams nearly nine minutes to complete the first pass of the game.
#2 Final Meeting In The Orange Bowl, September 4th, 2006.
After 30 games between the Hurricanes and the Seminoles in the Orange Bowl, it was finally coming to an end, as Miami decided to tear down the historic stadium.
In another defensive struggle, or lack of offense, depending on how you watched the game, Florida State came away victorous with a 13-10 win.
Both Miami and Florida State would end up going 7-6 for the year.
#1 2009 Miami Hurricanes Escape As Christian Ponders Pass Hits The Ground
In a game in which the lead changed seven times, Miami escaped with a 38-34 victory.
The game was close throughout as both Miami's quarterback Jacory Harris and the Seminoles' quarterback Christian Ponder had two touchdown passes each.
Harris ended his third career start with 386 yards passing, while Ponder had 294 yards.
The game was still in doubt until Ponders pass with no time left hit the ground in the end zone.