Florida State Scores Last 17 Points To Edge Notre Dame, 31-26, For 10th Straight Bowl Win
MIAMI, FL–Danny Kanell threw four touchdown passes, including three toAndre Cooper, as Florida State scored the final 17 points andcontinued its postseason dominance with a 31-26 win over NotreDame in the Orange Bowl at Miami.
Eighth-ranked Florida State (10-2) won its 10th straight bowlgame and is unbeaten in its last 14 at 13-0-1. The Seminoles wonat least 10 games for an NCAA record ninth straight season.
“I was afraid of Notre Dame,” said Florida State coach BobbyBowden. “I was afraid of Notre Dame, especially Lou Holtz. Heis a master at preparing his team. Our kids rose up. This teamwas so close to having the year we were supposed to have — wehad two bad quarters all year.”
Sixth-ranked Notre Dame (9-3) had its six-game winning streaksnapped and fell to 5-4 in bowl games under Lou Holtz.
“Florida State is a great football team,” said Holtz. “Theyplayed as well as they have all year. We have no alibis, I feltwe had a chance until the very end. It was an outstandinggame.”
Kanell threw a pair of touchdowns in a 3:38 span of the fourthquarter to erase a 26-14 deficit. He found E.G. Green for an11-yarder with 9:47 left.
Kanell completed 20-of-32 passes for 290 yards.
“We wanted to win it for Coach Bowden so badly because at theend of the season we struggled a little bit,” Kanell said. “Ijust kept my head. I wanted to come out strong. There was a lotof pride on the line. This was my last game so I wanted to comeout and play strong win or lose. They were an excellent team,we knew that. We knew it was going to be a battle to the end.”
On the next possession, Green caught a 21-yard pass on 4th-and-5to the 4-yard line and Kanell later followed with a 2-yard scoringstrike to Cooper, who set an Orange Bowl record with his thirdtouchdown catch. Cooper, who had just four receptions in thegame, then caught the two-point conversion pass. The touchdownfollowed a 41-yard punt return by Dee Feaster to the Irish 30.
The 17-0 run concluded when Tom Krug of Notre Dame was calledfor intentional grounding in the end zone for a safety.
Warrick Dunn of the Seminoles carried 22 times for 151 yards,including 98 in the first half. The four touchdown passes byKanell are also an Orange Bowl record.
Krug threw three touchdown passes, including two long strikes toDerrick Mayes. Krug connected on passes of 39 and 33 yards toMayes, who beat defensive back Samari Rolle each time, and addeda five-yarder to tight end Pete Chryplewicz.
“I didn’t think we had the game wrapped up,” Krug said. “We knewthey were capable of coming back quickly. We tried to keepscoring and keep scoring since we knew they could come back andscore. You throw the ball up in an area and you know he’s goingto bring it down. It’s a great feeling when you know you canrelax back and throw and 99 percent of the time he’s going tocatch it no matter where it is.”
Mayes outleaped Rolle for his second score with 8:04 left in thethird quarter to give the Irish a 17-14 lead. Krug kept thedrive alive with a four-yard run on fourth-and-three to theSeminole 32.
Krug was 14-of-24 for 140 yards while Mayes had six receptionsfor 96 yards.
Notre Dame tacked on a safety early in the fourth quarter. A44-yard punt by Hunter Smith was downed at the 1-yard line andKanell then stepped out of the end zone while rolling out topass. Notre Dame moved downfield after the ensuing free kick andthe drive ended with the touchdown pass to Chryplewicz.
Kanell threw a pair of touchdown passes to Cooper to helpFlorida State post a 14-10 halftime lead.
Cooper made a leaping catch over two defenders in the end zonewith 2:30 left in the half to give the Seminoles their firstlead at 14-10. The flanker also caught a 15-yard scoring strikefrom Kanell midway through the first quarter to tie the game at7-7.
Notre Dame struck first when Mayes beat Rolle with 8:27 left inthe first quarter. Scott Cengia added a 20-yard field with twoseconds in the first quarter.
Mayes returned a punt 52 yards for a touchdown early in thesecond quarter, but the score was called back by an illegalblock.
“I wish all the scores could have been traded for a win,” saidMayes. “I came here to be a winner, hopefully the younger guyscould pick up where I left off.”
At The Orange BowlJanuary 1, 1996Attendance: 72,198
Florida St (8) 7 7 0 17 – 31 Notre Dame (6) 10 0 7 9 – 26
ND–Mayes 39 pass from Krug (Cengia kick) FSU–Cooper 15 pass from Kanell (Bentley kick) ND–FG Cengia 20 FSU–Cooper 10 pass from Kanell (Bentley kick) ND–Mayes 33 pass from Krug (Cengia kick) ND–Safety. Kanell stepped out of end zone ND–Chryplewicz 5 pass from Krug (Cengia kick) FSU–E Green 11 pass from Kanell (Bentley kick) FSU–Cooper 2 pass from Kanell (Cooper pass from Kanell) FSU–Safety (Krug, intentional grounding in end zone)
FSU ND First downs 26 17 Rushes-yards 37-188 45-256 Passing yards 290 169 Sacked-yards lost 3-24 1-11 Return yards 60 35 Comp.-Att.-Int. 20-33-2 15-26-1 Punts 3-44.0 5-42.4 Fumbles-lost 1-0 2-1 Penalties-yards 7-59 7-55 Time of possession 28:13 31:47
RUSHING:Florida St.-Dunn 22-151, Preston 6-55, P. Williams 2-7, Abdullah 2-2, Kanell 5-minus 27.
Notre Dame-R. Farmer 7-93, A. Denson 11-67, Edwards 14-55, Krug 11-45, M. Thorne 1-4, Sollman 1-minus 8.
PASSING:Florida St.-Kanell 20-32-2-290, Dunn 0-1-0-0.
Notre Dame-Krug 14-24-1-140, D Smith 1-1-0-29, Edwards 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING:Florida St.-Messam 6-103, E Green 5-99, Cooper 4-38, Dunn 2-19, P Williams 2-17, Abdullah 1-14.
Notre Dame-Mayes 6-96, Chryplewicz 3-18, Edwards 2-25, Stafford 2-14, Mosley 1-13, R. Farmer 1-3.