UCF came to Phoenix undefeated for their last 25 games. They will return to Orlando with their first loss in over two years.
"Today we weren't good enough to find a way to win the football game," UCF head coach Josh Heupel said. "Love the way [LSU] continued to fight for four quarters and continued to fight with everything that they had."
UCF had a strong start outscoring LSU 14-10 in the first quarter, but the Knights had penalties and targeting calls that stopped their momentum.
"We did some things uncharacteristic for us early on in the football game that hurt us a little bit," Heupel said. "Just weren't good enough at the end."
Even though the Knights aren't bringing any hardware back to Central Florida they remain optimistic about the future of their young program.
"I think this place is just getting started," UCF WR Michael Colubiale said. "I think this is going to be a regular appearance in a New Years Day bowl and even beyond that."