Home/NFL

USA Today via Reuters

It’s interesting to see that the 2023 Orange Bowl is going to witness two teams who were expected to play in the playoffs. Georgia is a defending national champion whose single loss came from Rose Bowl contender Alabama Crimson Tide. But perhaps, it’s the Florida State Seminoles who experienced one of the worst fates this regular college football season. 

Despite being an undefeated conference champion without their starting QB Jordan Travis, Mike Norvell and his team faced a shocking blow when the CFP Committee declared that they’re not among the top four playoff contenders. Ahead of their matchup against Georgia, FSU lost 24 players who either entered the transfer portal or left for the NFL draft. With two lawsuits ongoing, watch Mike Norvell addressing the Seminoles’ situation in a recent YouTube video. 

Mike Norvell addresses players leaving FSU following the CFP snub

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Ahead of the Orange Bowl matchup, FSU HC Mike Norvell and Georgia HC Kirby Smart made an appearance on Noles247 on YouTube. In this episode, Mike Norvell presents the challenges that the Seminoles have faced this season. He said of the players leaving, “There’s been some tough choices for guys to have to make… It was hard. A lot of them were hurt in decisions of things that they couldn’t control but ultimately, I believe in where we’re going… Just grateful for all that our players have poured into our program throughout this journey.”

Florida State’s omission from the playoffs sparked unrest in the football world when they became the first undefeated Power Five winners to not be eligible for the National championship finals. In light of this, the State of Florida filed a lawsuit against the CFP Committee. And this isn’t the only FSU lawsuit this season. Recently, the program sued the ACC for their unrealistic $572 million amount to exit the conference.  

FSU faces player crisis before Orange Bowl matchup

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Ever since the CFP Committee’s decision to leave Florida State out of the playoffs, it’s not surprising that players are beginning to look for more promising shots elsewhere. According to Sports Illustrated, “over 20 FSU players have opted out of the Orange Bowl against Georgia.” But Mike Norvell is still optimistic and grateful for the Orange Bowl opportunity despite the unfair judgment. He said, “You don’t always receive the reward for that, but you do control the response and what you do with it, where you go, and the attitude which you bring. That’s what’s going to define the identity of what you have.

READ MORE: “Told Me To Find Another [QB]”: Coach Prime’s Latest Episode Exposes Shedeur’s Struggles, Prompting Deion Sanders to Seek Change

As for Georgia, this is what Kirby Smart has to say about the Bulldogs, “They want to finish together. I think finishing is important… For kids that love football, they want to play football. This is the Orange Bowl. You’ve got an opportunity to go play in the Orange Bowl, and that’s not given to everybody.” 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

After falling short of their expectations for the season, FSU and Georgia will meet in the 90th annual Capital One Orange Bowl showdown on Saturday. The game will take place at Hard Rock Stadium at 4:00 PM. 

WATCH THIS STORY: Coach Prime Deion Sanders’ Coaching Conundrum Deepens With Colorado Football Quality Control Analyst’s Promotion