Florida State football: 5 best seasons in program history

Jameis Winston, Jimbo Fisher, Florida State Seminoles. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Jameis Winston, Jimbo Fisher, Florida State Seminoles. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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Best Florida State football seasons
Derrick Brooks, Florida State Seminoles. (Photo by Berstein Associates/Getty Images) /

No. 1 Coaches/No. 1 AP. 1993 (12-1). Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. National Champions/ACC Champions. 3. player. 804

It didn’t take long for Florida State to become national champions upon joining the ACC. In their second year as a member institution, the Seminoles went 12-2 en route to their first national title. Florida State went 8-0 in ACC play with wins over No. 17 Clemson, at No. 13 North Carolina and No. 15 Virginia. They also beat No. 3 Miami and at No. 7 Florida in the non-conference slate.

Florida State’s only loss this season was at No. 2 Notre Dame, a game that has become famous because it was the first time ESPN’s College GameDay took it on the road. Florida State alum Lee Corso got to take the entire crew up to South Bend for such a monumental television pre-game show experience. The Seminoles might have lost by a touchdown to the Irish, but they rebounded.

After a 9-0 start, the Seminoles then took their 9-1 record back to Doak Campbell to humiliated the bewildered North Carolina State Wolfpack, 62-3. They then went to Gainesville and beat the Gators at Ben Hill Griffin by two scores. This victory over Florida helped propel the No. 1 Seminoles to the Orange Bowl to face the No. 2 Nebraska Cornhuskers for a national title.

Tom Osborne’s team was approaching its apex as a program but did not have enough to beat Bowden’s team down in Miami. Florida State won 18-16 to secure its first national title in school history. 1993 was also famous for giving Florida State its first Heisman Trophy winner in quarterback Charlie Ward while linebacker Derrick Brooks was the star of this championship defense.