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Inner voice told Bowden to kick

If he knew where the kick would go and had it to do over again, Bobby Bowden would have tried one more pass into the end zone in the final seconds of Florida State's 19-16 loss to Miami on Saturday at the Orange Bowl.

But the FSU coach had very little time to weigh the factors, and he felt trying the field goal _ even though Bowden loathes ties _ was the right decision.

FSU had moved to the Miami 22-yard line, but the Seminoles had no timeouts and only eight seconds remained.

"I don't like playing for ties, but something said kick it," Bowden said Sunday, the day after Dan Mowrey missed a 39-yard field-goal attempt that would have tied the game. "Now that I know the outcome, yes, I would have thrown it.

"But it's a very low percentage. Making a two-point conversion happens only 48 percent of the time, and the ball is on the 2. We were on the 22, and the farther you go back, the odds keep dropping. But I'll be honest, I didn't think of all of that at the time. Something said: "Kick it now; we don't deserve to lose.'


The final minutes: Mowrey said he was surprised Bowden decided to try for the tying field goal with eight seconds left, but he was glad for his opportunity.

"Of course," Mowrey said. "It's a dream. I felt good. I felt comfortable. I stepped out there just like it was in the first half. That's my job, to make that kick. I just didn't do it."

Mowrey said, though, that he didn't know how long it would take to forget the miss.

"Maybe a day," Mowrey said. "Maybe a week. Maybe a month. Maybe a year."

Sympathetic Marvin: FSU linebacker Marvin Jones had nine tackles (five unassisted) and broke up a Gino Torretta pass. Yet Jones refused to blame the loss on Mowrey or anyone else.

"There's so many ways you can look at it," Jones said. "If we had played harder or the offense had, it wouldn't have come down to a field goal. I'm not upset with Dan. I think he's a hell of a kicker. It just didn't go through.

"That's just the way you have to be when you're a good team. You should always look forward to a better day."

Team loss: Cornerback Clifton Abraham, beaten on the 33-yard touchdown pass to Lamar Thomas that put Miami ahead 17-16 in the fourth quarter, took the defeat particularly hard.

"He was taking that thing too personal, like he lost the game," Bowden said. "I don't want him to feel that way. It's just like last year. Gerry Thomas did not lose that game. We lost the game as a team."

A scorcher: FSU outside linebacker Derrick Brooks missed the second half because he was receiving intravenous fluids for dehydration. Receiver Matt Frier suffered cramps but managed the best day of his career: seven receptions for 70 yards.

"The heat got us terribly," Bowden said. "Several times we had drives going and we had to take our receivers out.

"You wonder why some of our subs were in the ballgame who hadn't been in there before (reserve Clyde Allen had a reception in the fourth quarter, then fumbled). Some of our guys had cramps and were on the sideline."