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1998 Nokia Sugar Bowl
1234 Total
Ohio State 3056 14
Florida State 714010 31
DateJanuary 1, 1998
StadiumLouisiana Superdome
LocationNew Orleans, Louisiana
FavoriteFlorida State by 7 points (47.5) [1][2]
RefereeSteve Usechek (Big XII)
United States TV coverage
AnnouncersBrent Musburger and Dan Fouts
Sugar Bowl
 < 1997  1999

The 1998 Sugar Bowl was played on January 1, 1998. This 64th edition to the Sugar Bowl featured the Ohio State Buckeyes, and the Florida State Seminoles. Ohio State entered the game ranked number 10 in the nation at 10–2, whereas Florida State was ranked at fourth in the nation with a 10–1 mark.

Ohio State scored the first points of the contest with a 40-yard field goal from kicker Dan Stultz, giving the Buckeyes an early 3–0 lead. Later in the first quarter, quarterback Thad Busby threw a 27-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver E. G. Green, giving the Seminoles a 7–3 lead. In the second quarter, Busby scored on a 9-yard touchdown run increasing the Seminole lead to 14–3.

William McCray also scored for the Seminoles, pounding it in from one yard out, to increase Florida State's lead to 21–3 at halftime. Stultz kicked his second field goal of the game, cutting the margin to 21–6. Ohio State later got a safety on Florida State pulling them within 21–8. Early in the fourth quarter, Sebastian Janikowski kicked a 35-yard field goal, increasing Florida State's lead to 24–8. Quarterback Joe Germaine threw a 50-yard touchdown pass to John Lumpkin. The ensuing two-point conversion failed, and the score was 24–14. Florida State capped the scoring with a one-yard touchdown run from McCray, making the final margin 31–14.

This was another Sugar Bowl appearance for Bobby Bowden and his 'Noles, who would appear in five of them over a nine-year span (3-2). FSU was in the midst of an all-time dominant run that we have arguably never seen before. FSU finished in the final top 4 of the AP and or Coaches Poll in every season from 1987-2000. This was the 11th season in a row in which we saw FSU finish near atop the polls. Ohio State would get back to the Sugar Bowl the following season and win their matchup against Texas A&M. The Buckeyes would end up finishing second in the final polls, one spot ahead of FSU, who lost in the inaugural BCS national championship game against Tennessee.


  1. ^ "Orange Bowl Odds". Orange Bowl Odds. Archived from the original on October 26, 2020. Retrieved October 25, 2020.
  2. ^ "Betting line". Orange Bowl Odds. p. D7. Archived from the original on October 26, 2020. Retrieved October 25, 2020.