1965 Gator Bowl
20th Gator Bowl
1234 Total
Florida State 61866 36
Oklahoma 7066 19
DateJanuary 2, 1965
StadiumGator Bowl Stadium
LocationJacksonville, Florida
MVPSE Fred Biletnikoff (Florida State)
QB Steve Tensi (Florida State)
LB Carl McAdams (Oklahoma)
RefereeR.P. Williams (SEC;
split crew: SEC, SWC)
United States TV coverage
AnnouncersCurt Gowdy, Paul Christman
Gator Bowl
 < 1963 1965 (Dec)

The 1965 Gator Bowl (January) was an American college football bowl game played on January 2, 1965, at Gator Bowl Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida. The game pitted the Florida State Seminoles and the Oklahoma Sooners.


Florida State started the season with five straight wins (including one against #5 Kentucky) to get to #10 in the rankings before a loss to Virginia Tech dropped them out. They went 3-0-1 the rest of the way, while being invited to a bowl game for the first time since 1958.

Oklahoma started the season ranked at #2, but went 1-3 to start the season, with losses to USC, #1 Texas, and Kansas. They went 5-0-1 the rest of the season (including a win at #4 Nebraska), to finish in second place in the Big Eight Conference to qualify for their sixth bowl game in 11 years.

Game summary

For Florida State, Steve Tensi threw 23-of-36 for 303 yards and five touchdowns. Fred Biletnikoff caught four of those passes for touchdowns, along with nine more for a total of 192 yards. Florida State outrushed Oklahoma 217 to 71, outthrew them 303 to 209 while only punting once in the game.[1]


Florida State would reach three more bowl games in the decade; Oklahoma would reach two more in the decade.


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on September 5, 2015. Retrieved December 17, 2016.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)