LSU to face Clemson in Chick-fil-A Bowl

Some SEC football fans may be frustrated by the rule that limits conferences to just two representatives in BCS bowls but the Chick-fil-A Bowl is among the post-season games that will reap the benefits.

SEC power LSU will face Clemson in the Dec. 31 game at the Georgia Dome. LSU (10-2, 6-2 SEC) finished second to Alabama in the SEC West but the Crimson Tide and Florida filled two BCS slots for the league.

LSU finished No. 9 in the final AP poll and No. 8 in the BCS standings and Clemson (10-2, 7-1 ACC) is ranked No. 14 in both.

“We’re about as excited as you can be to have two 10-win teams for the first time in our history with a Clemson-LSU match-up,” said Gary Stokan, the Chick-fil-A Bowl president and CEO. “These teams are two of the top teams in the country and create one of the best bowl game match-ups of the post season.”

LSU is 5-0 in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, including four victories when the game was known as the Peach Bowl. LSU defeated Clemson 10-7 in the 1996 game and last played in the bowl in 2008, when it beat Georgia Tech 38-3.

“[Atlanta] is a great city that has been very good to LSU,” LSU coach Les Miles said. “I’m sure that we’ll travel extremely well. The Georgia Dome is an outstanding venue and we are excited about the opportunity to play in the Chick-fil-A bowl.”

Clemson (10-2, 7-1) finished second to Florida State (11-2, 7-1) in the ACC Atlantic division with a head-to-head defeat to the Seminoles. The Tigers last played in the Chick-fil-A Bowl in 2007, when they lost 23-20 to Auburn in overtime, and are 2-5 overall in the game.

LSU will be the highest-ranked team Clemson has faced in a bowl game since it defeated Tennessee in the 2003 Chick-fil-A Bowl.

“I know the team will be very excited to play LSU,” Clemson center Dalton Freeman said. “If you want to be a consistently outstanding program you have to play national championship contenders like LSU.”

LSU lost to Florida and Alabama this season but finished higher in the final BCS standings than four teams that will play in BCS bowl games: Florida State (No. 12), Northern Illinois (15), Louisville (21) and Wisconsin (not ranked).

Florida State, Louisville and Wisconsin earned the automatic BCS bids for the ACC, Big East and Big Ten, respectively. Northern Illinois, the MAC champion, earned an at-large BCS spot by finishing No. 15 in the final rankings and ahead of at least one team from an automatic qualifier conference.

The first Peach Bowl was in 1968. Since the game started matching SEC teams vs. ACC teams the conference’s representatives have won 10 games each.

38 comments Add your comment


December 2nd, 2012
8:13 pm

Under The Bleachers

December 2nd, 2012
8:17 pm

Underwhelming Bowls at its finest!


December 2nd, 2012
8:20 pm

You need to explain how LSU or A&M were affected by the NIU ripple effect. SEC can only have two teams in, which they have. NIU hurts Big XII teams, but doesn’t change where SEC teams go.

Michael Cunningham

December 2nd, 2012
8:23 pm

@AJ: meaning they were headed to the Cotton Bowl until TAM became available, which happened because Georgia ended up in Cap One.

I Thought

December 2nd, 2012
8:27 pm

I thought LSU beat GT in Paul Johnson 1st year at Tech. 30-3


December 2nd, 2012
8:28 pm

Not to be obtuse, but that means LSU was affected by UGA, not NIU. UGA or UF was BCS bound, but not both. NIU didn’t preclude an SEC team from going, so no one was pushed down in the SEC order by their entry.


December 2nd, 2012
8:29 pm

Too bad the BCS bowls don’t take the highest ranked teams!! Northern Illinois and Louisville in BCS games?! WTF!!

juice sourcer

December 2nd, 2012
8:34 pm

This is a better game than all but one BCS game..that’s Oregon and K.ST. The BCS is a joke.


December 2nd, 2012
8:39 pm

Wisconsin 8-5 WTF??????????????????????

Jag Dawg

December 2nd, 2012
8:44 pm

GA in the Cap. One while NIU and Louisville are in the BCS. What an effing joke.

Mike Bell 790

December 2nd, 2012
8:54 pm


December 2nd, 2012
8:58 pm

The obamification of America where everything has to be “fair”. Everyone gets a chance


December 2nd, 2012
8:59 pm

@Michael Cunningham Please see this sentense ”The Aggies became available after the Outback Bowl selected Georgia (11-2, 7-1),”

question?? is UGA going to Outback or Capital One?????

Joe Dirt

December 2nd, 2012
9:03 pm

Durrrr, you are a stupid idiot that makes genuine political conservatives embarrassed by your ignorance and bigotry!

andre moreau

December 2nd, 2012
9:06 pm

More than ever, major college football, the NCAA, the BCS, lump them all together as an absolute joke. Go back to the 1960s or 70s and pick the teams who are most deserving. I am an ardent LSU Tiger — and LSU should without a doubt be in a BCS bowl, as should Georgia. Georgia and LSU should have spots in the Sugar and Orange or Fiesta. Swap around the teams so you don’t have unimportant rematches of regular season. KState can stay in Fiesta. Oregon is at large anyway, so send them to the Sugar. Northern Illinois–are you kidding me. Louisville –really?? The BCS rankings become meaningless after the top 3 or 4.


December 2nd, 2012
9:12 pm

I didn’t watch the ACCCG (did anyone?), but if a horrible Georgia Tech can stay within 6 of Florida State surely Northern Illinois can hang.

Just sayin’. It might actually be a good game.


December 2nd, 2012
9:13 pm

Quite a coup for the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. Two 10-2 teams, both Tigers, both from Death Valley. Should be exciting.

andre moreau

December 2nd, 2012
9:38 pm

it’s true for the Peach Bowl (Chick-fil-A). Great stadium, great city, great civic and fan support. Two winner teams @10-2.


December 2nd, 2012
9:41 pm

The BCS is a joke, the NCAA is stupid for ever letting it get to this place. We need a 8 team playoff and then teams ranked 9-24 could have a 16 team National Invitation Tournament like they do it basketball. Then all these stupid loser bowls could pick up and invite anyone they want. We can put a man on the moon, we complete a successful heart transplant, we can creat atomic bombs to blow up the world and yet we can’t even figure out college football that makes sense everyone except the morons in charge!!! Please can someone please tell me when March Madness gets here so I can acutally watch a tournament that really means something in college athletics.


December 2nd, 2012
10:12 pm

Joe Dirt, where is the bigotry in Durrrr’s comment? Accusations of racism and bigotry are code for not being able to carry on a civil conversation.Next time, just be honest and say, “I got nothing.”


December 3rd, 2012
1:44 am

Great matchup for the Chick-fil-a bowl. Much better than the Orange with Northern Illinois and Sugar with Louisville. When Florida State gets through with Northern Illinois and Florida finishes pounding Louisville, maybe this BCS hiccup will change to an 8-team playoff. NIU and Louisville – Georgia would schedule these guys along with Buffalo and Georgia Southern.

Mark "Saint" Richt

December 3rd, 2012
7:24 am

AARON DON’T SPIKE THE BALL! Jesus will help us win.

Coach Mark Richt

December 3rd, 2012
8:29 am

I’m excited about the Capital One bowl game. Being outdoors will be good for my tan and hair.

Destin Dawg

December 3rd, 2012
9:25 am

Bama and OBama… ruined my year … great game… Dawgs played their hearts out… Murray wanted to spike the ball ????

Muschamp Intensity

December 3rd, 2012
10:07 am

The BCS system was never really meant to seed all of the numerous bowl games that we have. It’s there to select No. 1 and No. 2. That job’s done. If your team did not achieve the record this year to elevate you to the top two spots then your season is complete. However, as a reward for your hard work, enjoy your holiday vacation to encounter a team you may never have scheduled. I always thought that was what all the bowls except the BCS Championship were for, opportunities to meet different teams from different conferences. That exposure to unusual coaching and scheming may help your team grow so you can compete again next year. If you’re upset that your team finished 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th in your conference and you don’t get to go to the Rose Bowl, get over it.


December 3rd, 2012
10:21 am

I’m with you all the way jvillebil Get a true playoff system, and then if the other teams want to go “bowling” let them go wherever the can.

I'm just saying!

December 3rd, 2012
11:25 am

mrincredible, if you take off the blinders you too could see where the inferences are being made in Durrrr’s comments. First, the BCS system was in place long before president Obama was elected so why even go there? The conversation is about football and the BCS issues, why bring your political affiliations into the conversation if not for intended purposes?


December 3rd, 2012
12:02 pm

I am trying to buy tickets and I want to get tickets on the LSU side. Will LSU be the home team during this game? Or will Clemson?


December 3rd, 2012
12:10 pm

It’s Mon and I’m still waiting on the Tech/UVa announcement on bolting to BIG. Maybe our posters meant Mon PM.

Alabama Dog

December 3rd, 2012
12:54 pm

Florida (whom Georgia BEAT) goes to the Sugar Bowl, while Georgia is relagted to the Captial One Bowl? Yeah, that makes perfect sense.

Red Stick

December 3rd, 2012
12:57 pm

Unfortunately for LSU, Georgia, S Car and A&M the system is what it is. Even if a 4 team playoff was in place this season, only Bama and Florida would be in it from the SEC. It will be difficult for the SEC to get more than 2 teams in the new playoff system. However other SEC teams will be able to get in the other 4 big bowls that are not among the 6 total BCS bowls that are in the rotation.

As a LSU fan it’s disappointing to see teams like Louisville, Wisconsin and NIU in the BCS bowls. But Atlanta is a great city and the Chick-Fil-A is a good bowl with one of the better matchups among all 35 bowls.

Geaux Tigers

Slive Sux

December 3rd, 2012
1:31 pm

SU to the worst possible bowl? Why, that’s just like almost every other year in the SEC.
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Look, it’s the first weekend of December, which means it’s time for the SEC to give LSU its annual piece of coal. And we’re supposed to smile and take it or else we’re “butthurt” or “whiners” despite a consistent pattern of 20 years of the SEC giving LSU the worst possible postseason destination.
And to be clear, this isn’t about Clemson, which is a fine team. It’s not even really about the Peach Bowl, which has gained some stature in recent years. It’s not even about Chick-Fil-A, as I find their sandwiches to be delicious. Someone among the SEC’s top six was gonna take one for the team and end up in the Peach Bowl despite a 10 win season. It’s just completely unsurprising that the program that has to lie on the grenade is LSU. Because if there’s a chance to send LSU to a lesser bowl, the SEC will usually take it. When it comes to league politics, LSU is a consistent loser.
The 2012 LSU team is the highest ranked team in the history of college football to not go to a January 1st bowl. I just want that statement to marinate, so you can realize just how badly the SEC is screwing LSU over. What’s worse is that this is the standard way of things.

This is not a BCS issue, it is an SEC issue. The SEC has made a habit of consistently mistreating LSU and failing to treat LSU like what it is, one of the marquee programs in the nation. In the past decade, there are only a handful of programs that can even claim to have achieved a similar level of success as LSU. In addition, we sell out stadiums and bring boffo TV ratings. The SEC has responded by treating us like Vanderbilt.*
*Vanderbilt, by the way, is also getting hosed. I feel for them, but that’s part of being Vandy. My point is that LSU is being treated like one of the lesser programs in the conference despite a phenomenal level of success. The way to get respect is to win. Unless you’re LSU. Winning titles and consistently finishing in the top 10 has gotten us bupkis.
Does it matter what bowl you go to if you miss the BCS? Of course it does. In a few years, morons will be using this as an excuse to batter Miles (he didn’t go to a New Year’s Day Bowl in 2012). Hell, morons are using that line now. What’s most galling is that this is not a one-off thing, this is a near every year thing. Don’t believe me? A timeline…

1992: The SEC expands and divisional play begins. LSU is mired in a three-year losing streak and has only won one conference title (and shared another) in the past two decades. Permanent rivalries are created with Eastern teams despite the fact LSU has no permanent rivalry with any of the Eastern teams. LSU is assigned Kentucky and Florida. Florida has just emerged as a national power.
1995: LSU ends its streak of six straight losing seasons. 6-5 Georgia goes to the Peach Bowl, and 6-4-1 LSU gets sent to the Independence Bowl. We’re too happy to be going bowling to complain.
1996: 9-2 LSU is in a three-way tie in the SEC with teams with the same record. Tennessee goes to the Citrus, SECCG loser Alabama goes to the Outback. LSU gets the worst bowl of the three, and goes to the Peach, where LSU wins its 10th game.
1997: 8-3 LSU is 6-2 in the SEC with an OOC loss to Notre Dame, but loses the tiebreaker to Auburn. SECCG loser Auburn gets sent to the Peach. Fellow 6-2 SEC squads Florida and Georgia both get January 1 bowls: the Citrus and Outback, respectively.
1998-99: The Dinardo era ends badly. LSU fails to go to a bowl. But a quick recap of the previous three years: LSU has been involved in a tie in the standings three times, and sent to the lesser bowl each and every time.
2000: Saban gets LSU back to the bowls. 7-4 LSU is 5-3 in the SEC, the same exact record as South Carolina and Georgia. Tennessee is 8-3, but also 5-3 in the SEC. Tennessee goes to the Cotton, South Carolina to the Outback. LSU gets shipped to the Peach Bowl while Georgia gets sent to the Oahu Classic. Technically a lesser bowl, but come on, it’s in Hawaii. LSU can’t win for losing.
2001: LSU wins the SEC. Goes to the Sugar Bowl by rule. It is the first time since SEC expansion that LSU is not sent to a “lesser” bowl, mainly because the rules do not allow it.
2002: An 8-4 LSU squad is in a three-way tie with Auburn and Tennessee. 8-4 Florida is 6-2 in the SEC and goes to the Outback. SECCG loser Auburn gets the Capital One Bowl. Tennessee goes to the Peach and LSU goes to the Cotton. It is the first time since SEC expansion that LSU does not get sent to the worst possible postseason destination allowable by rule. Instead, we get sent to the bowl we likely deserve.
2003: LSU wins the SEC and national title. SEC politics largely a non-factor. Now is a good time to point out the SEC got rid of two permanent rivals in 2002. LSU, who had five losing seasons in the SEC’s first decade, gets Florida as its permanent rival, who has won the East seven times. Everyone agrees this is fair.
2004: A 9-2 LSU squad is tied with Georgia. LSU goes to the Citurs Bowl while Georgia gets sent to the Outback. Time to celebrate, Tiger fans! This is the first time in 20 years that LSU will get the better bowl when in a tie with another SEC team. We promptly lose to Iowa.
2005: LSU goes 10-1 in the regular season, then loses in the SECCG. This is the Katrina team that didn’t have a bye week all season, and the team just ran out of gas against Georgia. 9-2 Auburn goes to the Citrus, 9-2 Alabama goes to the Cotton, and 8-3 Florida goes to Outback. The SEC moves decisively to prevent its SECCG loser from falling to the Peach Bowl. No, just kidding. LSU becomes only the third top 10 team to fall to the Peach Bowl, playing the fourth top 10 team to fall in Miami. Given the circumstances of 2005, it makes this year is a sick joke. LSU slides behind three teams it was AHEAD of in the standings. It is the worst screw job in relation to bowl position in the SEC’s history.
2006: 10-2 LSU is 6-2 in the SEC and loses the SEC West due to losing its cross over game against Florida (LSU also beat #17 Tennessee). Arkansas beats Tennessee as well, as well as the only two East teams with a losing conference record. LSU’s more difficult conference schedule costs them the SEC West title, but the BCS saves the #4 ranked team in the nation and LSU gets a Sugar Bowl bid. The SEC taketh, but also giveth.
2007: LSU becomes the first two-loss team to win a national title. Georgia has a real case they were the best team by season’s end, but they lose the tiebreaker to Tennessee and fail to make the SECCG. But the big thing in LSU’s favor is not the SEC media machine but the fact Virginia Tech is the #3 team and the top option to go the title game… and they lost to LSU 48-7. The theme here is that the BCS bowls have largely been kinder to LSU than the SEC has.
2008: South Carolina and LSU are both 7-5. USC goes to the Outback, LSU to the Peach. Again, LSU loses a head to head tiebreaker.
2009: Only three SEC teams have a winning record in conference. LSU is one of them at 5-3, and goes to the Capitol One Bowl with no complaint, as there really wasn’t another option.
2010: LSU and Arkansas are both 10-2 and 6-2 in conference. Due to the all-encompassing importance of head to head, Arkansas goes to the Sugar Bowl. 9-3 Alabama goes to the Citrus Bowl, because head to head didn’t matter in that case, nor did conference finish or overall record. LSU drops to the Cotton.
2011: LSU beats Alabama head to head on the road. As a reward, LSU has to play Georgia in the SECCG while Bama gets to skate into the BCSCG. LSU gets a rematch with a team they had a better record than, finished ahead of in conference, and beat head to head on the road.
2012: There’s essentially a six way tie between 10-win teams. Bama wins the SEC and Florida goes to the Sugar by virtue of playing the toughest schedule. LSU is 2-0 against the remaining three teams. Head to head cease to matter, and LSU is sent to the worst possible bowl.

If you’re scoring at home, that’s seven times LSU has been sent to a lesser bowl when involved in a tiebreaker. Often, LSU has been leapfrogged by teams it finished ahead of in the standings. Only twice has LSU “won” a tiebreaker, and one of those times was 2006, when LSU finished #3 in the country and didn’t win the West due to its difficult schedule, created by the permanent rivalries, which we oppose.
It’s not that the SEC is out to get LSU, it’s just that there are programs it has to “take care of”, and that is certainly not LSU. LSU has consistently gotten the short end of the stick in bowl selection and sent to the less prestigious bowl. And now the SEC intervenes to help Georgia? Are you kidding me?
The SEC gives us the toughest schedule and as a reward, if we end up with the same record as one of the teams with an easier schedule, they get the better bowl. Even if we beat them head to head.
I’m sick of just going along with things. LSU gets consistently hosed by the SEC, and it’s time to stop making nice. We should support a nine game schedule and the elimination of permanent rivalries. If the SEC won’t reward us for playing the tougher game, then screw Auburn and Bama getting to preserve some relic from the 1970s. We should oppose the SECCG always being in Atlanta, and certainly the baseball tourney in Hoover. We should propose that if we have to play on the Friday after Thanksgiving every year, so must Alabama and Auburn. If they aren’t going to treat us like an equal partner, then let’s burn this mother down. I’m sick of playing nice while they screw us in the back rooms.
It’s just another instance of the man keeping us down. Let’s take it out on Clemson.

marseilles mutt

December 3rd, 2012
1:41 pm

As a Bulldog letterman interred in the midwest, let me assure all of you ‘down yonder,’ especially my “Nole fans, that they may be somewhat surprised by what Northern Illinois (Huskies) brings to the table.

They’ve got a QB named Lynch that is comparative to “Johnny Football” out at A&M, and some helpmates that aren’t too shabby as well…they won’t have their coach, cause he was just hired to take over for O’Brian at North Carolina State…and this is the same NIU that beat both Maryland AND Alabama in the same year back several years ago.

This is probably the 3rd or 4th best match-up of all the bowl games…lot of money could change hands on this puppy!

marseilles mutt

December 3rd, 2012
1:54 pm

Hey S Sux, I would trade you right now to play Clemson rather than Nebraska and I don’t care where the game is played or when it is played.

Liked your post, and how’s the cramps in your hands?

Really, as far as a game goes, I would bet the house that the LSU Tiger football team as a whole would MUCH rather play Clempsun rather than Nebraska, who just lost by 39 points. Ought to be a great game! Hope you cream ‘em!

Geaux Tigers!


December 3rd, 2012
1:59 pm

Love seeing all of the SEC homers whine about NIU.

North of the Mason Dixon line and West of the Mississippi may not be your cup of tea, but there are alot more folks outside of Dixie who cheer for/respect teams who aren’t in the SEC.

I know it is hard to understand in your feeble minds…but you gotta deal with it!!!

Alabama Dog

December 3rd, 2012
2:16 pm

Does Georgia get a “do over” like Alabama did last year? Slive Sux: LSU isn’t the only team getting the proverbial “lump of coal” here! Georgia gets their share too! Obviously, if you’re NOT Alabama, that’s what you have to look forward to every year. I realize Georgia had their chance this year, but so did Alabama last year on November 5th in Tuscaloosa. This is why the BCS doesn’t work. This is the same reason why a 4 team playoff won’t work either.


December 3rd, 2012
2:50 pm

It’s unfortunate Georgia got left out of a BCS game, but after their poor clock management they kind of got what they deserved. If you’re going to the game in Atlanta, asks you to enter your seat info and who you’re cheering for, so it can be plotted on a seat map for the Georgia Dome.

Harvey D. Pooka

December 5th, 2012
4:07 pm

I cannot bring myself to cheer for either of these teams. Inkling of half-an-once of who cares nod to the ACC, but, really, I don’t care.