Joe Burrow threw five touchdown passes, ran for another score and capped one of the greatest seasons in college football history by leading No. 1 LSU to a 42-25 victory against No. 3 Clemson on Monday night to win the national championship.
The small-town Ohio kid turned Louisiana legend delivered the Tigers (15-0) their first national title since 2007 and fourth overall, breaking a few more records along the way in what was already an historic season. The five TD passes and 463 yards passing are the most for a BCS or College Football Playoff title game as are his six total touchdowns.
He became the first major college quarterback to throw 60 touchdown passes in a season as LSU snapped defending national champion Clemson’s 29-game winning streak. For the first time in his college career, Clemson star quarterback Trevor Lawrence was on the losing team. The Tigers (14-1) had won his first 25 starts.
But on this night, Lawrence (18 for 37 for 234 yards) was no match for Burrow — the Ohio State transferred who threw all of 16 TD passes last season with LSU.
His ascent has been dizzying and unprecedented. Running a version of the New Orleans Saints’ offense that was brought to LSU by 30-year-old assistant coach Joe Brady, Burrow and an array of talented receivers transformed these Tigers into one of the most prolific offenses college football has ever seen.
It was coach Ed Orgeron’s vision for LSU when he was promoted from interim coach in 2016. There was plenty of skepticism when LSU tabbed the Cajun who had failed in his first crack at head coach with Mississippi.
Orgeron has proved to be the perfect fit. Just like Burrow.
After tossing his fifth touchdown pass of the night, a perfectly placed jumped ball to Terrace Marshall Jr. from 24 yards out to make it 42-25 with 12:08 left in the fourth, Burrow signaled TD and strolled to the sideline.
The Superdome is LSU’s dome away from home, about 80 miles from the Tigers Baton Rouge campus, and it was rocking.
The LSU band broke out its unofficial anthem, “Neck,” and as the Tigers bounced and waved towels on the sideline, Burrow just sat on the bench, bobbing his head and waving one arm.
Joe Cool. Just doing his thing. Next stop: The NFL draft, where he will likely be the first pick in April.
12:13 am FINAL: LSU defeats Clemson 42-25 to claim the National Championship.
12:12 am LSU converts a 4th and 3 from the Clemson 22 and can now drain the clock.
12:07 am Trevor Lawerence scrambles into LSU territory but fumbles it right into LSU’s hands. LSU takes over. 3:30 remaining
12:02 am LSU’s drive stalls out but they burned over 4 minutes off the clock. Punt.
11:58 pm LSU making their way to midfield. 6:30 remaining
11:49 pm Clemson unable to move the convert and is forced to punt. 10:10 remaining in the game.
11:44 pm Clemson TD comes off the board on a offensive pass interference call. 2nd and 25 coming up.
11:38 pm Burrow hits Terrace Marshall Jr. for 24 yds and the score! LSU extends their lead 42-25.
11:36 pm LSU moves into Clemson territory early in the 4th quarter.
11:32 pm We’ve reached the end of the third quarter where Clemson trails by a score of 35-25.
11:28 pm Clemson quickly goes 3-and-out. LSU starts their next drive from their own 41.
11:26 pm Clemson forces an LSU FG attempt. Kick is NO GOOD from 45-yards out.
11:21 pm LSU’s pressure is beginning to knock Lawerence off his rhythm. Clemson forced to punt. LSU takes over at their own 25.
11:18 pm Clemson takes back over at their own 30 with 5:00 minutes remaining in the 3rd quarter.
11:10 pm LSU answers with a score of their own. Burrow hits Moss for the score. Play reviewed and stands. LSU takes their lead back to double digits.
11:05 pm LSU converts a 3rd and 15 with a pass to Ja’Marr Chase for 43 yards and is in the redzone.
11:00 pm Clemson is unable to move the ball past midfield this time. LSU takes over following the punt.
10:52 pm Clemson forces another 3-and-out and have the ball with a chance to take the lead.
10:46 pm Etienne drives into the endzone for a Clemson TD. Clemson converts the 2-point try. LSU lead cut to 3.
10:43 pm Out of the half LSU goes 3 and out. Clemson now with the ball at midfield.
10:12 pm At the half, LSU leads Clemson 28-17.
10:09 pm: The penalty proves costly for Clemson. Burrow caps off the drive with 6 yard pass to Moss. LSU leads 28-17.
10:01 pm: 3rd and 19 falls incomplete for LSU, but a defensive pass inference call gives the drive new life.
9:55 pm: Clemson unable to get a drive going. Punt pins LSU inside their own 10. 3:49 remaining in the opening half.
9:50 pm: LSU takes their first lead of the game on a Joe Burrow pass to Ja’Marr Chase for 14 yds. 21-17.
9:37 pm Clemson makes their way to midday field on their next possession, but stall. Punt coming up.
9:33 pm On third and goal Joe Burrow takes it in himself. 17-14 with 9:17 left in the second quarter.
9:26 pm LSU starts off their next possession with a huge shot to Ja’Marr Chase for 56 yds. Sets up 1st and goal.
9:23 pm Clemson’s Tee Higgins runs it in from 36 yards out! Clemson leads 17-7.
9:16 pm LSU again is unable to sustain a drive. Clemson takes over deep in their on territory.
9:11 pm On the first possession of the second quarter Clemson retakes the lead with a 52-yard FG.
9:06 pm At the end of the first we are tied in New Orleans. Clemson 7, LSU 7.
8:59 pm LSU hits on the deep throw! Joe Burrow hits Ja’Marr Chase for 52 yards and the TD. Tied game with 2:20 remaining in the first.
8:56 pm Short possession for Clemson as LSU will get the ball back on their own 30.
8:54 pm Again nothing going for LSU. Clemson begins on their own 25.
8:50 pm LSU takes back over at their 25.
8:45 pm Clemson Touchdown! Trevor Lawrence takes it in himself with 6:34 remaining in the first quarter. PAT good.
8:43 pm Clemson maneuvers their way into the red zone for the first time tonight. 1st and goal from the 6 coming up.
8:37 pm Neither team able to move the ball so far. Another punt from LSU has Clemson starting back at their own 33.
8:33 pm Clemson’s unable to take advantage of the good starting field position and is forced to punt the ball back to LSU. They will take back over at the 4.
8:28 pm Clemson’s defense starts strong and forces a 3-and-out. Clemson takes back over at the LSU 42.
8:26 pm LSU takes over on their on 6 with 11:46 remaining in the first.
8:18 pm Clemson’s offense got off to a fast start with a 35 yard pass to Justyn Ross, but saw their drive stall in LSU territory. A sack on 3rd down forces a Clemson punt.
8:18 pm LSU kicks off the game and Clemson’s offense takes the field
8:15 p.m. LSU wins the toss, defers to the 2nd half and will kickoff the National Championship game
UPDATE 8:00 p.m. |
With the game about to kickoff, here is a live look at Bourbon Street in New Orleans
UPDATE 7:17 p.m. | President Trump has arrived in New Orleans for the College Football Playoff National Championship.
UPDATE 6:40 p.m. | People are arriving at Champions Square in New Orleans for the College Football Playoff National Championship.
UPDATE 6:10 p.m. | Clemson has arrived at the Superdome to take on LSU!