Louisville, Ky. — Jameis Winston threw three touchdowns to offset a three-interception start and Dalvin Cook had two long scoring runs to help second-ranked Florida State rally for a 42-31 victory over Louisville on Thursday night.
Florida State overcame a 21-0 deficit for its 24th straight victory, with Cook giving the Seminoles the lead for good with a 38-yard run with 3:46 remaining.
Out of sorts and on the verge of having its College Football Playoff prospects damaged, the Seminoles (8-0, 5-0 Atlantic Coast Conference, No. 2 CFP) recovered behind their Heisman Trophy quarterback and Cook, who had a 40-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.
All of Winston's TD passes were big. He hit Travis Rudolph for 68 yards, Ermon Lane for 47, and Freddie Stevenson for the 35-yard clincher with 2:11 remaining.
Winston was 25-of-48 for 401 yards.
More important for the Seminoles was maintaining their national championship hopes on a night that Louisville (6-3, 4-3, No. 25 CFP) nearly took them away twice.
The presence of Muhammad Ali was fitting in a game that the Cardinals initially dominated with a smashmouth approach that provided a 21-point first-half lead and knocked the Seminoles on the ropes. Michael Dyer had TD runs of 4 and 12 yards and Gerald Christian caught an 11-yard scoring pass from Will Gardner.
Florida State began its comeback just before halftime when Winston, shaking off two interceptions that Louisville turned into 14 points, led the Seminoles 78 yards on a drive that ended weird touchdown when Nick O'Leary recovered Karlos Williams' fumble in the end zone.
The intermission gave Winston and Florida State time to regroup, though not before his third interception and second by Louisville safety Gerod Holliman. Ironically, Winston's biggest play came after the pickoff as he came up and stripped Holliman of the ball, which Travis Rudolph recovered at the Florida State 40.
The Seminoles turned it over on downs but Winston found Rudolph wide open down the middle between two defenders for a 68-yard TD strike that cut it to 24-14 with 9:51 left in the quarter.
Florida State's swagger was back, and Cook turned it into a 40-yard touchdown run nearly 4 minutes later to bring the Seminoles within a field goal.
Winston's TD pass to Lane with 12:48 left provided Florida State's first lead and the game became a slugfest from there as Dyer answered for Louisville with a 1-yard TD run with 9:20 left. The Seminoles took charge from there with Cook's TD run and Stevenson's pass from Winston.
Notre Dame's Robinson a cool customer
Notre Dame wide receiver Corey Robinson didn't dwell on his potential winning touchdown against Florida State being taken away by a controversial penalty.
"At the moment I saw the flag, I said, 'OK, next play,'" said the son of former NBA star David Robinson.
Fighting Irish coaches say Robinson's cool demeanor and work ethic is helping him grow into a big-play receiver. He's second on the team with 27 catches for 539 yards and four touchdowns.
The 6-foot-5, 215-pound sophomore from San Antonio, Texas, could provide matchup problems when No. 6 Notre Dame (6-1) faces Navy (4-4) at FedEx Field in Landover, Md., on Saturday. Navy, the alma mater of Robinson's father, has only one starter in its secondary taller than 6-feet.
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly describes Robinson as a solid player to coach.
"It's fun as a coach and teacher when you get somebody that in so many ways is learning every day that he steps on the practice field," Kelly said.
Robinson once dreamed of following in his father's footsteps and attending the Naval Academy. He began rethinking that option when he got football scholarship offers. He has a simple answer for those who ask why he chose football over basketball.
"I didn't have a choice. I didn't have any offers for basketball," he said.
Don Bracken, who punted for Michigan from 1980-84, died in Billings, Mont. He was 52.
According to the Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, Bracken had been diagnosed with MRSA.
Bracken also punted for the Packers and Rams.
... Miami is honoring former quarterback Jim Kelly who is recovering from cancer, at Saturday's homecoming game against North Carolina.
The Hurricanes also are adding defensive tackles Russell Maryland and the late Jerome Brown to the school's Ring of Honor.
... Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon accepted one year probation after being charged with punching a young woman at a restaurant in July.
... Former Iowa State coach Clay Stapleton died Thursday. He was 93.
... Texas A&M won't name a starting quarterback for Saturday's home game against Louisiana-Monroe until game time.
Sophomore Kenny Hill might give way to freshman Kyle Allen for the Aggies, who have lost three in a row after a hot start.