Synonymous with failure a season ago, third down conversions have been much easier to come by for the Seminoles, who converted their first five tries Saturday night.
FSU moved the chains on 11-of-18 of its third downs against the Cavaliers, bringing the total on the season to 41conversions in 92 tries.
That tally equaled FSU's total from all of last season when the Seminoles made good on just 41-of-177 third-down attempts, the worst conversion percentage in Division I.
"We've got a lot of weapons out there," quarterback Drew Weatherford said. "It helps when you give the (opponents) defense a lot to think about."
One of those weapons, tailback Lorenzo Booker, turned in the most explosive third-down play Saturday night when he raced 58 yards midway through the first quarter for FSU's initial score. Facing third-and-3, Booker burned the blitzing Cavs by breaking loose on a career-long touchdown run on a toss left.
The Seminoles converted a trio of third downs on their very next drive, a march that to a field goal after its first failed conversion try of the night.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
Eight different FSU players have turned in a gain of 20 yards or greater this season. Coming into the night the Seminoles had 23 such big plays, 15 passing and 8 rushing. Lorenzo Booker, who leads the team with six big plays, got into the act again Saturday night with a 58-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.
TEN YEARS LATER
Virginia generated additional buzz Saturday night by honoring its 1995 team with a presentation at halftime. Under the direction of quarterback Mike Groh - now the team's offensive coordinator - that edition of the Cavs won the Peach Bowl, a share of the ACC title and became the first team to down FSU in conference play with a 33-28 triumph on Nov. 2, 1995.
Florida State is 200-1-1 in the Bobby Bowden era when scoring more than 30 points, good for a .995 winning percentage. The lone loss came in 1984 when Auburn edged FSU 42-41. The tie game is a little more familiar to most - the Seminoles rallied to knot the 1994 Florida game at 31 apiece after trailing 31-3 in the infamous Choke at Doak.
FSU punter Chris Hall, a Virginia native, got a chance to play in front of family and friends for the second time in his career. The senior had plenty of time to soak up the familiar scenery - the Seminoles didn't need his services until there was 5:49 to play before halftim. By the way, Hall placed 11 of his first 27 kicks this season within the opponents' 20.
FSU-UVA Game Notes
Nole Digest Top Stories
History On FSU's Side With Top-5 RankingFlorida State was ranked No. 4 in the preseason AP Poll, and their history says that's a good sign for Seminole fans.
FSU No. 4 In Preseason AP PollFlorida State will start the season as a preseason Top-5 team.
FSU QB Malik Henry SuspendedFlorida State will be without quarterback Malik Henry indefinitely.
FSU 8/20 Practice Report and HighlightsFlorida State went through their first practice of Saturday's two-a-days in pads.