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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The consternation surrounding Florida State's weak nonconference schedules should diminish some in time for 2014, as the school announced Wednesday it would play a neutral-site game against Oklahoma State in Dallas at Cowboys Stadium.
The sixth annual Cowboys Classic will kick off the 2014 season on Saturday, Aug. 30, pitting FSU against a high-scoring Big 12 foe for the first time since Oklahoma visited Tallahassee in 2011.
The game, to be played in prime time on ESPN or ABC, will mark the fifth meeting between the Seminoles and Cowboys and first since the 1985 Gator Bowl, won by Florida State 34-23.
ESPN and the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday announced an extension through 2024 for the Cowboys Classic, the holiday-weekend game that started in 2009, the year the $1.2 billion stadium opened.
The neutral-site game has been discussed for weeks, but several snags delayed the announcement, the most significant being the future schedule for Notre Dame, which will begin playing five games against ACC competition per year in 2014.
With the FSU-Oklahoma State game now set, it certainly appears the Seminoles will not face Notre Dame for the first time until at least 2015, as it would already have two high-profile nonconference games set for 2014, including its annual rivalry game against SEC foe Florida.
As the Seminoles pushed for a national championship this season, the weak nonconference schedule -- combined with a down year in the ACC -- proved a burden. Two games against FCS foes were particularly problematic, with a blowout win over Savannah State replacing a scheduled game against West Virginia. The Mountaineers nixed their visit to FSU in February.
The 2013 slate doesn't figure to be much better. Florida State will host nonconference games against Nevada, Idaho and Wofford, and will play on the road against Florida.