FSU hopes to capitalize on turnaround season heading into 2023

Embellished with garnet and gold confetti jared poetryThe face and arms are colorful reminders FloridaThe most recent success, an impressive 35-32 win over Oklahoma Cheez-It Bowl Thursday night.

With the Seminole battle anthem still ringing in the giant Camping World stadium, the Verse and the Seminoles can celebrate the program’s first 10-win season since 2016.

Not easy to imagine, understaffed good morning The (6-7, 3-6 Big 12) took a double-digit lead early on before No. 13 FSU (10-3, 5-3 ACC) fought back midway through the third quarter to regain the lead. The game quickly turned into a back-and-forth, with the Seminoles needing a late fumble recovery and a 32-yard field goal with 55 seconds left to seal the win.

the win earned florida coach mike nowell a Cheez-It’s bath, with confetti sprinkled all over the team in celebration.

FSU coach Mike Norvell celebrated with the championship trophy after winning the Cheez-It Bowl on Thursday night.

“I’m not going to limit what we can accomplish as a team,” Norwell said after the game. “I was disappointed with some of the setbacks I had earlier in the season, but these guys never stopped working and they never stopped believing.”

The Seminoles entered the offseason strong, especially with the return of several impactful starters including the quarterback. jordan travisrun back Trey Bensonthe receiver Mikey Pittmanoffensive linebackers Maurice Smith and Robert Scott and linebackers Karen DeLoach and Tatum Bethune.

Travis finished with a career-high 3,631 total yards and 32 total touchdowns. The redshirt junior became the 11th quarterback in school history to pass for 3,000 yards in a single season.

“We’re not done yet. This is just the beginning,” Travis said Thursday. “We have another chapter. This year’s chapter ends here, but we still have a lot, a lot of things to do. I have a lot of plans and a lot of goals for next year and I can’t wait.”

“A lot of work,” Norwell said with a laugh.

“It’s also a lot of work, 100 percent,” Travis said.

It was one of the best statistical seasons, with FSU averaging 36 points and 484 yards for the first time since 2013. The nightmarish offensive line from 2016-19 took a massive turnaround, allowing just 20 sacks — the lowest total since 2009.

The defensive combination is having one of its best seasons since 2016, allowing 20.6 points and 321 yards per game while totaling 40 quarterback sacks.

“We’re getting better, and our goal is to go to that field every day or be in the classroom or whatever we’re doing, and we want to improve,” Norvell said.

Along with the returning starters, Florida State signed 24 players from its No. 16 recruiting class. Eighteen of those players were early entrants, including transfer Jeremiah Bell (South Carolina), Jeremiah Byers (UTEP), Darrell Jackson (Miami), Keiondre Jones (Auburn), Kyle Morlock (Short), Casey Roddick (Colorado) and Braden Fiske (West Michigan).

According to 247Sports’ overall ranking, FSU signed the No. 2 overall transfer class.

It’s the blueprint that Norvell and his staff have followed since his arrival, signing 43 transfers, many of whom played a successful role in Florida State’s move.

“As far as where we’re going, I can assure you that we’re going to have great days in Tallahassee,” Nowell explained. “The future of this program is very bright, but it’s thanks to the talent we have. It’s because of the constant effort to get better, and people are just willing to fight for it.”

For many FSU players, this season’s success is a model for their future endeavors.

“Take this year as an example and say we started last January; it’s all building on what we’ve had this year,” said Tails Treshaun Ward. “It’s only going to get better from here on out and we’re just going to work harder and try to get a national title.”

“We’re just getting started,” catcher Johnny Wilson added.

This article first appeared on Orlando Sentinel Network. Email Matt Mershall mmurschel@orlandosentinel.com Or follow him on Twitter @osmattmurschel.