ORLANDO — One of Florida State's biggest stories happened before Thursday's 18-14 victory.
FSU announced an hour before kickoff at the Champs Sports Bowl that Jimbo Fisher agreed to a one-year contract extension that will keep the second-year coach with the Seminoles through 2016.
No financial changes were made to the contract, which will pay Fisher $2.75 million annually.
"Florida State is a job you want to stay at forever," he said. "The faith the university has in (the staff), the program and the direction in which we are going, we feel very fortunate."
It's the second one-year extension Fisher, 46, has agreed to during the past 11 months. His deal was extended in January after he led the Seminoles to a 10-4 record, their most wins since 2003.
Manuel's success: QB EJ Manuel continued his series of strong performances in bowl games. The junior finished 20-of-31 for 249 yards and two touchdowns Thursday. In his three bowl games, Manuel is 48-of-70 for 522 yards and no interceptions. He has accounted for four touchdowns (three passing) and, more important, three wins.
Injuries add up: FSU's already injury-riddled secondary took two hits when both starting cornerbacks left the game. Sophomore Xavier Rhodes injured his knee on a third-quarter play near the sideline and did not return.
Junior Greg Reid left after falling as he tried to defend Michael Floyd's third-quarter touchdown catch. He experienced concussion-like symptoms and did not return.
Reid started eight games this season; Rhodes appeared in every game (10 starts).
Reserve Terrance Brooks, a sophomore, came in and had an interception in the end zone in the fourth quarter.
Freshmen playmakers: FSU WR Rashad Greene was named the most valuable player after catching five passes for 99 yards and a touchdown — all in the second half. His diving 33-yard catch in the third quarter was FSU's first third-down conversion of the game, and his leaping 15-yard catch put the 'Noles ahead 15-14. … RB James Wilder, a former Plant High standout, had four carries for 10 yards.
Irish milestone: Floyd's acrobatic, third-quarter touchdown catch did more than give Notre Dame a 14-0 lead. He became the first player in school history with 100 catches in a season. Floyd sustained what the school called only an "upper-body injury" on the play and played sparingly the rest of the way.
Et cetera: The announced attendance of 68,305 marked the first sellout for the Champs Sports Bowl. … FSU earned a bowl victory for the fourth consecutive season. Only Florida and Iowa can match that this season. … FSU leads the all-time series against Notre Dame 5-2. … The 'Noles have consecutive nine-win seasons for the first time since 2003-04.