The (13-0) Tigers had trouble against the Bulldogs early and managed only 36 feet in the first half, but that came back with 32 unanswered points in the second half. It was the Tigers fourth league title in five seasons and they will play for their fourth national championship (1958, 2003, 2007) on Jan. 9 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.
A lackluster offense behind Jordan Jefferson, who played the entire game, fell behind 10-0 in the first quarter. However, as they began to shut down the Dawgs' offense and Aaron Murray, who had catchable passes dropped early, Mathieu's 62-yard touchdown salvaged a second quarter. After going scoreless in the first half, the Tigers and special teams opened the flood gates in the third quarter.
"Last night I dreamed I would score three touchdowns," said Mathieu. "I came close to that. I put pressure on myself then transfer that pressure to my teammates to win the game.
"I felt we needed to change the momentum and it was the perfect time for that punt return. When I make one guy miss, I'm, on my way."
Mathieu is not a serious contender for the Heisman Trophy this season, but Tigers coach Les Miles said Mathieu should at least be invited to New York for the presentation."
Freshman running back Kenny Hillard, who began his career as a 240-pound fullback, is becoming one of the Tigers best runners. He ran 15, 4 and 8 yards for touchdowns and caught an eight-yard touchdown pass from Jefferson. Hillard is now tied for the team lead is rushing touchdowns with eight.
After leading 10-7 at the half, Georgia managed only 36 yards in the third quarter as Murray was intercepted by Mo Claiborne for a 46-yard touchdown.
In the fourth quarter, LSU put the game on ice with a 48-yard touchdown run by Alfred Blue, and a 45-yard interception for a touchdown by Claiborne.
Blue became the third running back to eclipse 500 yards rushing this season, as the sophomore added 94 yards on eight carries. Michael Ford gained 34 yards on six runs and starter Spencer Ware added 13 yards on six trips.
SOME HITHER, others yon: No matter what happens on Sunday, LSU and Alabama will play a rematch for the national title. What a joke. If we used the BCS system in the real world, Custer would have been awarded a rematch at Little Big Horn...Did you see where a woman in a California Walmart pepper-sprayed fellow shoppers on Black Friday so she could get to the best merchandise? Sounds like some of the football recruiters in the SEC...LSU fan Lew Murray notes that a football player at LSU who didn't leave school early or go into the draft early, could have won a national championship ring every year after the recruiting class of 1999 reported. I'll check that out. Could be a very good recruiting tool...
I saw Patriots quarterback Tom Brady say this on "Sixty Minutes" after he won three Super Bowls: "Is this all there is in life?"...Where's former LSU running back Cecil "the Diesel" Collins? He's serving 15 years in a Florida prison for burglary. He'll ge out in 2014...Now that Patrick Peterson has scored four touchdowns for the Cardinals returning punts, you can call him :"Lincoln".:...
The BCS's Twitter handle is @EveryGamecounts. But how can every
game count if it doesn't matter who won the first one? From ESPN columnist Rick Reilly: "If you remember, LSU won the first game -- which resembled hippos taking a mud bath -- 9-6 (in OT, no less,), in Tuscaloosa. Didn't hurt the Tide any. They're going to get a mulligan if we don't stop it. You have to figure, too, that, if Alabama had won, then LSU would have only one loss and the Tide would get the redo. This is because, apparently, no conference can really play football in this country except the SEC, which invented the sport in 2006."...
Alabama linebacker Dont'a Hightower told the AP it was going to be good to get a week off because a lot of the guys are banged up. (The game is Dec. 9). More Reilly: "If Alabama wins Walking Dead II, the Tide will be ...what? National champions? How? They'll have lost one, same as all other contenders. They'll have split the home-and-home series with LSU. They won't even have won their SEC division. much less their conference. Yet they could wind up petting the crystal football.".....
by Ed Staton