LSU was down seven men on defense going into the Fiesta Bowl but during the game things did not start to look much better. The already depleted Tiger secondary lost S Grant Delpit with a targeting call and CB Terrence Alexander with a punch.
But if the Tigers learned anything today, it is that when things get tough, you have to be tougher.
"We talk about grit all the time. Our guys have grit, they practice with grit," Coach O said. "Look at the DB's we didn't have in the game and the guys didn't blink. There were no excuses."
A heavy hit against QB Joe Burrow also added to LSU's disadvantages.
Burrow was demolished by a UCF defender on an interception and first-and-ten for the Knights. However, that didn't stop 'Burbank Joe' from powering through.
"After I got up, it hurt for a second then I got right up and went to the next play," Burrow said.
This LSU team was not playing at 100 percent, but it was still enough to end UCF's 25-game winning streak. The team credits leadership and brotherhood for the high morale.
"That's one of the strengths of our team is leaning on each other through tough times," DE Rashard Lawrence said. "It's pretty easy when you've got brothers you love playing with week in and week out."
The Tigers defeated the Knights 40-32 to claim the title of Fiesta Bowl Champions.