TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida State still has two games remaining, a Nov. 30 matchup with hated rival Florida in Gainesville and a Jan. 1 game against Texas A&M in the Mobil Cotton Bowl.
But the top-ranked Seminoles' season basically ended here yesterday, with a 17-16 defeat to No. 2 Miami at Doak Campbell Stadium. Asked how difficult it would be for Florida State to get ready for its next game, quarterback Casey Weldon was typically blunt.
"It will be really tough," said Weldon.
Said tailback Amp Lee: "It creates a lot of problems for this team. We have to go out there and play football. I know that."
Said cornerback Terrell Buckley: "It hurts a great deal. You work all spring, and then you work for 11 more weeks to get to this point. Any time you think you're going to win a national championship and you don't is very disappointing."
Florida State coach Bobby Bowden best summed up the one-sided nature of this rivalry with Miami. When asked if the Miami players were going to follow him into the interview room, Bowden said: "I don't know. They can go anywhere they want. They own us."
* Rusty Medearis, who terrorized Florida State's offensive line and helped his teammates sack Weldon six times, was more than a little frightened when he had to serve as Miami's snapper on what turned out to be Carlos Huerta's game-winning extra point.
"Everyone's jumping around after the touchdown and I'm scared to death," said Medearis, who had replaced Tom Patterson when Miami's regular snapper twisted a knee. "I bent down over the ball to get comfortable, and the ref said, 'Don't touch the ball.' I'm just glad the kick was good."
Medearis later came out of the game, with a sprained right ankle on Florida State's final drive. How helpless a feeling was it, standing on the sideline? "Very helpless," said Medearis, a sophomore. "I just crossed my fingers and prayed a lot."
* After scoring the game's first touchdown, Miami fullback Steven McGuire had some rough moments in the first half. He dropped what would have been a long reception on his team's second possession, and a fumble at the Miami 24 set up a Florida State touchdown.
"I knew I couldn't get down," said McGuire, who recently came back after missing one game with a knee injury. "I just didn't want to lose today."
McGuire contributed mightily to Miami's victory, gaining 142 yards on 22 carries. Though he was stopped twice inside the 3 what turned out to be the Hurricanes' winning score, he helped set up that touchdown and the two earlier field goals.
I= "Steven was possessed," said Miami coach Dennis Erickson.