It was a closer game than a year ago. Florida State has come a long way. However, the 'Noles were not able to take down No. 1 Oklahoma in the end despite playing in a capacity filled Doak Campbell Stadium. The deciding factors were FSU defense's learning curve, several wasted chances, and EJ Manuel's shoulder injury.
In little less than 8 minutes into the 1st quarter, Oklahoma used its fast-paced offense to generate a touchdown and an extra point off a flat-footed Seminole defense. If 'Noles defense had been able to acclimate sooner, the outcome of the game would have been radically different. The 'Noles would have stopped the Sooner's 15 play, 80 yard touchdown push. The 'Noles might have won the game.
Though Florida State's offense had struggled to generate against Oklahoma's solid defense all game, they succeeded in generating yardage and chances. If the 'Noles had taken advantage of some of those chances, they would have been in a position to win. Three turnovers, all of which proved costly, doomed the 'Noles to a tough uphill battle all game.
Florida State's starting quarterback EJ Manuel's sustaining a left shoulder injury while rushing certainly didn't help FSU's chances. Manuel's departure brought freshman Clint Trickett onto the field. The 180 pound underclassman (spare the child!) looked fragile each of the five times he was sacked by Oklahoma's stalwart defense. Though Trickett threw for FSU's only touchdown of the game (an impressive display), both his inexperience and his lack of protection caused his demise.
The game was a dramatic disappointment for Florida State University's national aspirations and a dramatic boost for Oklahoma's. Though FSU failed this test, it is apparent that the program is headed in the right direction.