The Daily Nole

By the Numbers: How FSU Has Finished After 3-3 Starts

Mike Olivella/FSU athletics

The start of the Willie Taggart era at Florida State has not gone as well as imagined. Through six games, the Seminoles sit at 3-3 and just 1-3 in the ACC.

On the plus side, that is better than FSU fared through six games last season as the Seminoles started just 2-5 before finishing 7-6 with the final two wins coming under interim head coach Odell Haggins. On the down side, FSU needs three wins in its final six games to become bowl-eligible and four of its remaining contests are against current top-20 teams.

In now its 72nd season of football, the Seminoles have started 3-3 through six games on seven prior occasions. Here’s a look at how each of those seasons finished:

1954 (9-4)

Finish: 5-1
Overview: After getting shut out in each of its first three losses, Florida State capped the 1954 regular season with five straight wins, including a thrilling victory over what is now Southern Mississippi. The lone blemish for FSU down the stretch was a 47-20 defeat to Texas Western — now UTEP — in the Sun Bowl.

1957 (4-6)

Finish: 1-3
Overview: After consecutive easy wins over Abilene Christian and Virginia Tech, the Seminoles looked as though they may be hitting their stride at the midway point in the season. FSU proceeded to suffer blowout losses to Miami, Mississippi Southern — now Southern Mississippi — and Auburn. The lone victory over the final four games came over Tampa in the 1957 finale, 21-7.

1959 (4-6)

Finish: 1-3
Overview: The only season under Perry Moss ended quite similarly to the 1957 campaign. FSU suffered shutout losses to Georgia and William & Mary before falling to Florida, 18-8. The lone victory again came over Tampa. The Seminoles closed the year with a 33-0 shutout of the Spartans.

1965 (4-5-1)

Finish: 1-2-1
Overview: One year after finishing ranked for the first time ever, Florida State fizzled under head coach Bill Peterson to end the 1965 season. After shutting out Wake Forest, 35-0, to get over .500 for the first time that year, FSU dropped a 3-0 contest to NC State and a 30-17 decision to Florida around a 16-16 home tie against Houston.

1966 (6-5)

Finish: 3-2
Overview: After starting 3-3 for a second season in a row in 1966, FSU finished 3-2 to complete a winning season. Losses came at Syracuse and in the Sun Bowl against Wyoming, but wins over South Carolina, Wake Forest and Maryland down the stretch were all convincing. The most notable contest of the season was a 22-19 loss to Florida in which a missed call on an apparent touchdown by Lane Fenner likely cost the Seminoles the victory.

1970 (7-4)

Finish: 4-1
Overview: The final season of Bill Peterson’s tenure saw the Seminoles finish strong after a 3-3 start. FSU won four straight games after a 3-3 start with a 27-3 win over Miami being the closest. Unfortunately for FSU, it was blown out by Houston in Tampa to conclude the campaign, 53-21.

2011 (9-4)

Finish: 6-1
Overview: A season that watched Florida State ascend into the top 5 early on looked to be on the verge of coming to a crashing halt after three straight losses, but the Seminoles managed to finish the second season under Jimbo Fisher strong. FSU won six of its final seven contests, which included wins over Miami, Florida and Notre Dame in the Champs Sports Bowl. The lone blemish was a 14-13 heartbreaker at the hand of Virginia.

*Parenthesis denotes final record

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

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