College Sports

What did Josh Heupel and Ed Orgeron say ahead of the UCF-LSU clash at the Fiesta Bowl?

Saban dismisses claim that UCF shares national title with Alabama

Alabama coach Nick Saban insists that his team is the true NCAA football champion, and not UCF, who went undefeated last season. Saban added that the College Football Playoff system is "not broken."
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Alabama coach Nick Saban insists that his team is the true NCAA football champion, and not UCF, who went undefeated last season. Saban added that the College Football Playoff system is "not broken."

On the eve of the 2019 Playstation Fiesta Bowl, the coaches for the participating teams — UCF’s Josh Heupel and LSU’s Ed Orgeron — spoke at a joint news conference.

What was said?

Orgeron complimented UCF’s offense, noting how fast the Knights are and how nobody has really stopped them yet.

Heupel, in turn, complimented LSU’s size in the trenches and athleticism at the skill positions.

LSU’s defense will be a bit different than it looked during the regular season. Star cornerback Greedy Williams declared for the NFL Draft and is sitting out the Fiesta Bowl, while Kristian Fulton (injury) and Kelvin Joseph (violation of team rules) are also missing from the Tigers’ secondary, according to CBS Sports.

Orgeron joked he was looking into the orangutan from the Phoenix zoo that is picking the Fiesta Bowl winner later Monday to see if it could play a few snaps for his defense.

Both Orgeron and Heupel deflected when asked about playoff expansion or if UCF would claim a national title if it finishes undefeated, respectively.

“That’s out of my wheelhouse, man,” Orgeron told reporters in Arizona.

UCF owns the country’s longest active winning streak in college football at 25 games. The Knights are aiming to go undefeated for a second consectuive season, but will need to knock off an SEC program in a marquee bowl game for a second consecutive season to do it.

LSU, meanwhile, is coming off a seven-overtime loss to Texas A&M to end its regular season.

Sports reporter Jason has covered high school, college and pro sports since joining the Bradenton Herald in 2010. He’s won Florida Press Club awards for sports feature and column writing. He currently writes college and pro sports stories for the McClatchy East Region real-time team.
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