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Football flashback: When FSU overcame Russell Wilson’s greatness

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The season was disappointing. A lot like this one.

The opposing quarterback was terrific. A lot like the Seminoles have played this season.

And the outcome was perfect. Whether FSU can repeat it this week against North Carolina State remains to be seen.

It was in 2009, and FSU pulled out a 45-42 victory over the Wolfpack, always a tough opponent, in one of the wildest games in memory.

For one thing, the Seminoles had to survive the play of Russell Wilson, now a star with the Seattle Seahawks. Wilson threw for 369 yards and five touchdows that afternoon.

However, Christan Ponder threw for 277 and guided FSU to a game-winning, 66-yard drive. Bert Reed scored the winning touchdown on a three-yard run with 1:36 to play.

The teams combined for more than 1,100 yards of offense. Wilson gave the Wolfpack a 42-28 lead with 3:39 to play with a five-yard touchdown pass to Jarvis Williams.

It was the final season for Bobby Bowden at FSU.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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