The sixth-ranked Cavs were averaging 42.4 points and 493.2 yards.
They found the going far more difficult against the Seminoles on Saturday night at Doak Campbell Stadium, finishing with 281 yards -- and just 20 rushing.
FSU allowed just 5 rushing yards in the first half, building 19-3 advantage en route to a dominating 36-3 victory. The Seminoles also finished with five sacks.
FSU linebacker Ernie Sims said he expected the Seminoles to slow the Cavs' vaunted running game.
"Most definitely," Sims said.
"As we watched the film during the week, they have real good players across the board. But, also with the talent we have, up front, linebackers and our DBs, I didn't think they were going to gain much at all."
Sims turned in a stellar performance, starting with his first career blocked punt that resulted in a first-quarter safety. Lining up at left end for the first time, Sims nearly took the ball off the foot of Virginia punter Sean Johnson.
Sims also had two sacks, another tackle for loss and finished with nine tackles -- second to fellow linebacker A.J. Nicholson, who had 10.
"I just go along with the flow. It just feel real good out there," Sims said. "That (blocked punted) got me really hyped out there, and it got everyone else hyped, too."
Sims believes FSU's defensive performance was a blast from the past.
"As a kid, you watch FSU stop offenses, get turnovers and I think our defense played liked that (tonight)," Sims said.
"I think Derrick Brooks on the sideline, I think he was proud of the way we played. We played like the old defense. I wasn't surprised. I knew our defense was going to go out there and dominate. We are still right here for the national championship hunt."
Virginia's only points came on a 23-yard field goal by Connor Hughes as time expired in the first half.
Offensively, FSU was paced by quarterback Wyatt Sexton, who was quick to credit the Seminoles' defense as well as offensive coordinator Jeff Bowden's play calling.
"This is what I expected coming into this week and I just see it as another step towards hopefully a national title game," said Sexton, who also pointed to the Seminoles' overall quickness advantage.
"That (FSU speed) was definitely a advantage, mainly how our defense flew around and shut them down. (Offensively), we finally had a team guessing. We weren't predictable tonight and I think that was the difference.
"We were being successfull pretty much with whatever we wanted to do offensively."