Florida State Bowl Games
 1958 Bluegrass Bowl vs Oklahoma State
"We need warmer weather."
The inaugural Bluegrass Bowl was scheduled for Fairgrounds Stadium in Louisville KY on Saturday, December 13, 1958. ABC's national telecast would be Harry Wismer's last broadcast and the first national TV appearance of Howard Cosell.
Organizers hoped to match nearby Kentucky with Alabama, which finished 5-4-1 in Bear Bryant's first year as coach after previously coaching Kentucky for eight seasons. But both schools turned down the invitation. So the organizers turned to Florida State and Oklahoma State.
A special train brought FSU's 145-piece marching band and other supporters to Louisville for the game.
Florida State's 1958 Season
Tom Nugent's sixth Florida State squad lost three of ten games. All three losses came on the road to SEC teams: Georgia Tech 17-3, Georgia 28-13, and Florida 21-7. The biggest wins also came on the road: 10-0 at Tennessee and 17-16 at Miami.
QB Vic Prinzi completed 56.3% of his passes (38 for 63 with only three interceptions) for 436y and seven touchdowns. Fred Pickard and Bobby Renn provided a one-two punch at running back, combining for almost 1,000y between them (558 for Fred, 429 for Bobby).

Tom Nugent

Cliff Speegle
The Opponent
Cliff Speegle's fourth Oklahoma State team also finished 7-3 and ended the regular season ranked #19 in the final AP poll. One of the losses was a hard-fought 7-0 battle against archrival Oklahoma in the season finale. Their biggest win was 7-0 at #15 Houston.
The undisputed star of the team was E Jim Wood, who made the College Football All-America Team first team selected by the American Football Coaches Association. Two other players would be chosen in the 1958-59 NFL draft: C Howard Keys and T Gerry Benn. Junior QB Dirk Soergel was the first three-sport lettermen at Oklahoma State in more than a decade. Basketball was his best sport, but he also excelled in baseball.
The Cowboys averaged almost 200y rushing per game (196.6), which was more than twice their passing average of 81.0.198lb G Vandiver Lafayette Childs III, the anchor of the defense, was fond of hunting rabbits. "Those little rabbits in the Florida State back­field," he explained.
The game was billed as a battle between "orthodox, split-T football, bulwarked by a weightier line and backfield that had a 15-pound per-man advantage, over a tricky, wide-open attack which attempted to combat power with ingenuity and speed."
Coach Speegle felt his team would have to stop the Seminoles' outside speed run predominately from an "I" formation. Nugent feared the Cowboys might "first down their opposition right out of the ball park. They have the power and use it admirably from a split T attack." By kickoff time, Oklahoma State was favored by two points.
The Game
The weather forecast of a high of 30° proved to be optimistic. Although 15,000 tickets were sold, the crowd that came to Fairgrounds Stadium in bone-chilling weather was esti­mated at anywhere from 5,000 to 10,000. The temperature started at 20° but fell to 12° by the end of the game, spurring the Louisville Courier-Journal to refer to the game as the "Brrr-r-r-grass Bowl." (The newspaper would also headline its story on the game with "Cowboys Beat Indians".)
Fortunately, the presale ticket income together with the TV contract was enough to pay each school their guaranteed amount of $20,000.

The Seminoles run a play against the Cowboys on the frozen field.
First Quarter
Both teams wore sneakers on the frozen field. "Operating from an I formation with a backfield scattered like quail" (as the Associated Press reporter described it), the Semi­noles moved into Cowboy territory on their first two possessions, reach­ing the 26 and the 18. But both fourth-down field goal attempts by Johnny Sheppard misfired.
The first drive began with a 14y run by QB Vic Prinzi to the FSU 38. After Fred Pick­ard carried twice to make it third-and-five, Prinzi fired to E Tony Romeo for 25y to the OSU 32. Bobby Renn gained five, but the Cowboys stuffed the next two plays to force the first three-point try from the 34 that went under the crossbar.

L: Johnny Sheppard misses a field goal. R: Vic Prinzi to Tony Romeo for 25y
(Pictures from Louisville Courier Journal)
The Seminoles quickly got the ball back on their 37 after Romeo dropped RB Duane Wood for an 8y loss.
They zoomed across midfield when Prinzi lateraled to Renn for 18y to the OSU 35, and 15y was tacked on for unnecessary roughness. But the momentum fizzled when Bud Whitehouse gained only a yard, Prinzi threw an incompletion, and Joe Majors' keeper carried only to the 13. This time G Vandiver Childs partially blocked the field goal attempt.
The Cowboys' split-T attack finally started percolating. They ran the ball 11 straight plays with Forrest Campbell carrying eight times for 48y. But on fourth-and-three at the FSU 18, the right side of the Seminoles' line stopped Campbell a yard short.
On FSU's first play, Bobby Conrad quick-kicked, but the ball took "a nasty reverse bounce" on the hard turf to net only 37y to the OSU 47.
QB Dick Soergel threw his first pass, connecting with RB Jim Wiggins for 31y to the FSU 22 where Majors' tackle saved a touchdown.
Oklahoma State 0 Florida State 0

Dick Soergel passes to Jim Wiggins for 31y. (Louisville Courier Journal)
Second Quarter
After Wiggins gained five, Duane Wood burst through left tackle for the touchdown and kicked the extra point. Oklahoma State 7 Florida State 0 (14:31)

Duane Wood scores OSU's first touchdown.
FSU took the kickoff and marched to midfield with the biggest gain coming on Prinzi's pass to Romeo. But Don Hitt intercepted the next pass at the OSU 36.
The Seminoles soon had the ball back. Nugent sent in #3 QB Gene McCormick who fired 25y to Romeo to the OSU 41. But on fourth down, McCormick was hit as he tried to pass, and OSU recovered the fumble on their 43.
Oklahoma State used most of the remaining time in the half with a march that started with Soergel connecting with Jim Wood for nine. HB Duane Wood smashed for 15 more on two carries. A penalty moved the Cowboys to the 24, and four more runs made it first-and-goal at the seven. Wiggins gained three, Soergel got nothing, and Wiggins gained three more to set up fourth down on the one. E Ron Hinson tackled Wiggins a foot short of the goal with 1:15 left.
But FSU fans couldn't breathe easy yet. Renn quick-kicked on second down to the 34. Soergel found Wiggins and then HB Wood to put the ball on the nine. Again eschewing a field goal, Soergel fired a pass that bounced off Jim Wood into the hands of Pickard as the half ended.
Oklahoma State 7 Florida State 0

Bobby Renn quick kicks from his end zone. (Louisville Courier Journal)
Third Quarter
The OSU offense picked up where it left off in the first half. Campbell again was the workhorse, gaining 40y on eight carries. After 16 plays they were on FSU's 24, but a holding penalty stymied them, and Jim Wood punted out of bounds on the 17.
Pickard and Prinzi ran the ball to the 45, but disaster struck on the next snap. Renn hit the middle but fumbled, and Don Hitt recovered for OSU.
Florida State soon had the ball back after another penalty forced the Cowboys to punt. But they were quickly back in business on the FSU 39 when Harold Beaty covered Pickard's fumble.
This time the Cowboys were not to be denied. Their 10-play march featured Wiggins' 18y scamper to the five. But after a holding penalty again set them back, Soergel tossed a third down screen pass to HB Wood, who was stopped on the 1' line. Wood took a pitch­out into the end zone on the next snap. Soergel threw to Duane for the two-point conver­sion off a fake kick.
Oklahoma State
15 Florida State 0 (0:07)

Jack Espenship tackles C.J. Harkey during the third quarter. (Louisville Courier Journal)
Fourth Quarter
The Seminoles still had a chance, but the offense had to get cooking. After Renn re­turned the kickoff to the FSU 40, Nugent switched to the double-wing spread formation with Majors, a better deep passer than Prinzi, taking the snaps. Joe flipped a screen pass to FB Paul Pasquale for 14y to the OSU 46. Then HB Carl Meyer got behind his defender and gathered in Majors' pass at the three and fell across the goal. Prinzi tried to sweep for two points, but Ralph Bock tackled him at the four. Oklahoma State 15 Florida State 6 (13:52)
Inspired by the offense, the FSU defense forced a three-and-out. The offense came back out after Jim Wood's 42y punt to the 21.
The momentum from the touchdown drive carried over as Pickard carried several times for a first down at the 31. Then Majors got hot, hitting HB Jack Espenship for seven, Hinson for 16, and Renn for 40y to the six. But the Cowboy defense stiffened. Pickard gained nothing, and Majors lost a half yard. On third down, Renn was open in the end zone, but the pass sailed over his head. Another pass on fourth down landed in the hands of Duane Wood, who ran it out of the end zone to the 18 with 7:43 on the clock.
The Cowboys ate up almost seven minutes with a ground attack that reached first-and-goal from the FSU 10. However, a bad pitchout caused a loss of 18 on the next play, and the Seminoles got the ball back with only 27 seconds remaining on a fumble recovery by T Bob Swoszowski.
Prinzi threw to midfield only to have Tony Barfield intercept. But the comedy of errors continued when G Terry Moran grabbed another fumble, OSU's seventh turnover of the contest. It was fitting that the game ended with Fred Latham intercepting Majors' pass to give FSU its seventh turnover too.
FINAL SCORE: Oklahoma State
15 Florida State 6
Oklahoma State
Coach Speegle: "Our kids played a fine ball game. ... We split our left side of the line, took out their men–often double-teaming their tackle–and made some nice gains that way. ... Our pass defense wasn't much the second half, especially on those deep passes, but we held when we had to. Yep, I guess our offense was a strong defense."
Florida State
Coach Nugent: "Our boys did well, but we couldn't put our best foot forward because of the cold weather. ... We need warmer weather. ... Our traps weren't going because our men pulling out of the line were slipping and couldn't get there for a block. Our backs couldn't get the speed up they like. ... Nor, with our boys' hands so cold, could we throw the screen passes we like. ... Here, our receivers were slipping in cutting. Oklahoma State has a fine club. ... They're big and strong and run the split-T to perfection. ... They moved the ball as I said they would."
There was no second Bluegrass Bowl.