The Daily Nole

5-Year Nole Anniversary: Cook’s Late TD, Ramsey’s Pick Complete FSU Comeback at Miami

FSU athletics

During Florida State’s 2013 national championship season, only one team — Auburn in the BCS National Championship — played the Seminoles to a contest decided by fewer than two touchdowns. The 2014 season, on the other hand, was full of nail-biters and late-game heroics.

On this day five years ago came one of those thrillers in a rivalry contest. The No. 2 Seminoles were 9-0 and riding a 25-game winning streak as they went south to take on rival Miami on Nov. 15, 2014. The 6-3 Hurricanes led by as many as 16 points twice in the contest, but FSU rallied for a thrilling 30-26 victory, thanks to some late-game heroics from a couple of eventual All-Americans.

With just over three minutes remaining in the contest, freshman running back and Miami native Dalvin Cook gave FSU its first lead and put the Seminoles ahead for good with a 26-yard touchdown scamper to cap a 5-play, 62-yard drive. On the ensuing possession, versatile defensive back Jalen Ramsey intercepted Miami freshman quarterback Brad Kaaya to put the contest away.

Through the early parts of the contest, the youngster Kaaya was upstaging FSU’s reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston. Kaaya led a pair of first-quarter touchdown drives that were capped with a 27-yard scoring strike to Phillip Dorsett and 1-yard touchdown run by Duke Johnson as the Hurricanes led 13-0 after one.

That lead extended to 16-0 just seconds into the second quarter after the Hurricanes converted a Jesus Wilson fumble into a 45-yard Michael Badgley field goal. FSU would finally get on the board with Cook’s first touchdown of the night — a 44-yard scoring run — but any momentum gained from the long touchdown run would be dashed rather quickly. It took Kaaya and Miami just four plays to answer as the freshman found tight end Clive Walford, who outran Florida State defenders for a 61-yard touchdown. Up 23-7, that would be the final touchdown of the night for the Hurricanes.

After a Roberto Aguayo field goal cut the lead to 13 midway through the second quarter, FSU missed an opportunity to cut further into the lead late in the half. After driving inside the Miami 40-yard-line, Winston forced one for Rashad Greene near the goal line, but was picked off by Miami safety Deon Bush.

A Cook fumble with FSU inside the Miami red zone would thwart another scoring opportunity for the Seminoles early in the third quarter, but the ball would finally bounce their way later in the quarter to make it a 1-score game. Facing 3rd-and-goal from the Miami 11-yard-line with less than five minutes to play in the period, Winston forced a throw into coverage near the goal line. The ball bounced off a Miami player and into the hands of a streaking Karlos Williams, who walked into the end zone to cap an 85-yard scoring march.

Aguayo would knock through field goals of 37 yards and 53 yards around a 46-yard Badgley make to pull FSU to within three at 26-23. The Florida State defense stood tall on the ensuing drive by forcing a 3-and-out to get the ball back for its Heisman Trophy winning quarterback at his own 38-yard-line with more than five minutes to play.

FSU crossed into Miami territory on a 17-yard throw from Winston to Greene, but after a holding penalty negated a second first down, the remainder of the drive became the Dalvin Cook show. Facing 1st-and-20 from the FSU 45, Winston found Cook for a 14-yard completion. On second down, Cook took the hand-off for 15 yards inside the Hurricanes’ 30-yard-line. On the next play, Cook made Miami defenders look silly on his way to the end zone.

The Hurricanes would pick up a pair of first downs on their final drive and march inside the FSU 45-yard-line. After a pair of incomplete passes from Kaaya and a short run from Joseph Yearby, Miami faced 4th-and-9. With the contest on the line, Kaaya fired a pass downfield which found the hands of Ramsey to seal the contest and a fifth straight win over the Hurricanes.

Ramsey was all over the field that evening for FSU, finishing with three tackles, a tackle for loss, a blocked kick and a forced fumble to go with the game-sealing interception. Reggie Northrup added 13 tackles and a sack for the Seminoles, who allowed 492 yards of offense to Miami.

Kaaya passed for 316 yards for the Hurricanes to 304 for Winston. Cook rushed for 92 yards and the two touchdowns on just seven carries while Miami’s Johnson led all rushers with 130 yards. Walford led all receivers with 127 yards. Travis Rudolph led the Seminoles with 65 yards receiving on four catches.

The long touchdown for the freshman Cook would serve as his second game-winning touchdown in three games. Over the course of his career, Cook would terrorize his hometown school. The victory served as Florida State’s biggest comeback win ever over Miami and its third comeback from double digits down on the season. It happened on this day five years ago.

Mike Ferguson is the editor of The Daily Nole. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson. Like The Daily Nole on Facebook. To pitch an idea, author a post or to learn more about The Daily Nole, email Mike Ferguson at

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply