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The Seminoles are just lip-quivering awesome. They have the No. 1 scoring offense in the nation. They have the stingiest defense in the nation. They have the deadlock, can't-miss, engrave-it-already Heisman Trophy winner in quarterback Charlie Ward. They have a shoo-in for the Butkus Award in linebacker Derrick Brooks. They have a defensive end, Derrick Alexander, who's as ornery as a rattler with a migraine.
They've won their games by an average of 37.9 points, and six of their opponents were undefeated (O.K., two of them were 0-0). The Seminole defense has scored almost as many touchdowns (six) as its opponents' offenses (eight). Stick that in your earhole.
Notre Dame, meanwhile, has nobody you ever heard of and dang near lost to Northwestern. It has no Rick Mirer. No Tim Brown. No Rocket Ismail. Its featured running back, a guy named Lee Becton, runs the 40 in 4.5, which is less like the Rocket than like, say, the Plymouth Duster. Florida State, 10 points.
PROF. SMITHERS, COULD YOU SHUT OFF THE JACUZZI FOR A SECOND?
ONES VERSUS TWOS
WHAT THE COMPUTERS THINK
THE TORO FACTOR
WHAT OTHER COACHES THINK
The NCAA should just ship the championship rings to Tallahassee right now—that's what other coaches think. When asked how Notre Dame could beat Florida State, coach Phillip Fulmer of Tennessee said, "Play 12 or 13 people on defense." Ray Goff of Georgia suggested that the Irish sneak the Dallas Cowboys into their uniforms. The coach at Auburn said, "Kidnap Charlie Ward. Or sneak into [Seminole coach] Bobby Bowden's house and steal the game plans. Both of those things I could do." The Auburn coach is Terry Bowden. Bobby's son.
Until Maryland woke up last Saturday thinking it was the 1963 Green Bay Packers and held Florida State to a mere 49-20 victory, North Carolina was the only team that had been so much as a speed bump for FSU. Carolina ran reverses, a counter play, an option pass, stuff that took advantage of the Seminoles' overpursuit. The Tar Heels played deep, gave up dink stuff and waited for mistakes. It worked for a half. Then the Seminoles won 33-7.