The Daily Nole

25 Days Until FSU Football: FSU Holds USC to 25 Rush Yards to Open 1997

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There are 25 days left until Florida State football starts the 2018 season. As part of the offseason, we’re highlighting players, games, and specific moments from FSU football history.

On Wednesday, it was Greg Allen who rewrote the FSU rushing records while donning the No. 26 for the Seminoles.

Today, it’s Florida State holding USC to 25 rushing yards in a dominant defensive performance to open the 1997 season.

That season began with No. 5 FSU making a long trip across the country to face a top-25 team. The contest ended with a 14-7 victory for the Seminoles and a dominant defensive showing was the reason for that.

For the night, the 23rd-ranked Trojans managed just 25 yards rushing on 32 carries. Three sacks for 15 yards, with two coming from Andre Wadsworth, helped the cause. Take those away and USC still managed just 40 rushing yards on 29 carries. For the game, USC tallied just 184 yards of offense.

Sam Cowart led the way with 10 tackles while Wadsworth finished with three tackles for loss for the Seminoles. Defensive tackle Corey Simon and linebacker Lamont Green each made two tackles for loss. Darryl Bush and Larry Smith each forced fumbles in the win. Troy Saunders had an interception for FSU.

Despite the struggles on offense for USC, the contest was tied under just under the 11-minute mark in the fourth quarter. Dee Feaster’s 3-yard touchdown run capped a 97-yard drive and broke a 7-7 tie in an eventual Florida State victory.

The season-opening effort would be the first of a number of dominant defensive performances for Florida State in 1997. FSU pitched two shutouts on the year and held six of its 12 opponents to seven points or less.

Mike Ferguson is the editor of The Daily Nole. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson

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