Fourth-ranked Florida State defeats fifteenth-ranked Louisville to claim the ACC championship on

Fourth-ranked Florida State defeats fifteenth-ranked Louisville to claim the ACC championship on

The author of this article is Steve Reed, a writer for the Associated Press (AP) who covers sports.

Florida State’s coach, Mike Norvell, stated that discussing the idea of excluding his undefeated Seminoles from the College Football Playoff should not even be considered.

It is highly likely to be.

The CFP selection committee was faced with a challenge from Florida State, who showcased a strong defense to defeat No. 15 Louisville 16-6 on Saturday evening. This victory earned the fourth-ranked Seminoles their first Atlantic Coast Conference championship since 2014.

The Seminoles now have a record of 13-0, but this does not necessarily secure them a spot in the four-team playoff. Alabama defeated No. 1 Georgia to win the Southeastern Conference championship, and Texas, who previously defeated Alabama, claimed the Big 12 title.

No Power Five team has ever gone unbeaten, won its conference title and failed to make the playoff.

Signs displayed by Seminoles supporters read, “Victory secures our spot!” However, the team’s offensive display and uncertain quarterback situation raised questions about whether they are truly among the top four teams in the nation.

The Seminoles utilized freshman third-string quarterback Brock Glenn, who completed 8 out of 21 passes for 55 yards. Their offensive performance only gained an average of 3.4 yards per play.

According to Norvell, we were victorious against a highly ranked team using a first-year quarterback. Regardless of others’ opinions, we emerged as the victors. If given the chance to compete in the national semifinals, it will be a tough battle, but I have confidence in this team and their abilities.

Norvell became agitated, forcefully hitting a table and declaring, “Despite what others may say, our team consistently shows up and gives their all every week. I have full confidence in their determination and I know they will continue to fight for every opportunity that comes their way.”

Lawrance Toafili rushed for 118 yards and scored a touchdown for the Seminoles, who followed a cautious strategy with Glenn as their quarterback.

Jordan Travis, the starting quarterback and potential Heisman Trophy winner, has been ruled out for the remainder of the season due to a leg injury. His backup, Tate Rodemaker, is also currently unable to play due to a concussion. It is possible that Rodemaker will be available if Florida State qualifies for the playoffs, but he has only started two games so far.

Florida State’s defense played a crucial role in their victory over Louisville in the ACC championship game. They recorded seven sacks, their highest of the season, and made a crucial interception to prevent Louisville from scoring. Additionally, the Seminoles had 14 tackles for loss and 10 pass breakups.

In the fourth quarter, with a score of 10-6, the Cardinals (10-3) had an opportunity to go ahead when they stopped Seminoles punter Alex Mastromanno from making the kick.

After gaining possession at the 11-yard line, Louisville’s offense was unable to advance and on the third play, Tatum Bethune intercepted a pass from Jack Plummer in the end zone.

Plummer completed 14 out of 36 passes for 111 yards.

“We were unable to capitalize,” stated Louisville coach Jeff Brohm. “We had opportunities to score, but we were unable to execute. Our team needs to realize that we have to make difficult plays. Unfortunately, we were unable to do so. As a result, our offense struggled in the fourth quarter.”

After a successful 33-yard kick by Ryan Fitzgerald, Florida State took the lead 13-6 with 3:11 remaining. The Cardinals had one final opportunity.

However, Braden Fiske successfully tackled Plummer on the fourth down, resulting in the Seminoles gaining possession at the Louisville 20 with only 2:35 left on the clock. Fitzgerald increased their lead to two possessions by making his third 40-yard field goal of the game.

Fiske ended the game with a total of three sacks.

“The defense has consistently impressed throughout the year and continues to improve,” Norvell praised. “We were aware that it would require a collective effort, and those players were truly exceptional.”

In the third quarter, the score was tied at 3-3 in the game. The Seminoles decided to switch things up by using the wildcat formation and putting Toafili in the backfield, taking the ball out of Glenn’s possession. Toafili received a direct snap from the center and ran for a 73-yard gain around the right end. He then scored a touchdown from 2 yards out in the same formation on the following play.

Norvell stated that the Seminoles incorporated the wildcat formation into their offensive strategy towards the end of the week.

Toafili was awarded the title of Most Valuable Player in the game.

Toafili expressed that as a team, they play for one another and have a strong bond. They have remained undefeated and are demonstrating their worth and abilities.


Rodemaker participated in warm-up activities before the game for the Seminoles and even dressed in his game jersey, giving the impression that he would be playing. However, right before the start of the game, he took off his shoulder pads, indicating that Glenn would be the quarterback for FSU.


Sign up here to receive notifications for the most recent AP Top 25 poll updates throughout the season.


The latest news and rankings for college football can be found on the AP website at and