2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl final score: Clemson beats LSU in New Year's thriller, 25-24

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

The Tigers who wear purple, play in Death Valley, have a very quotable head coach, have tons of NFL Draft prospects and spell out things to "Tiger Rag" won the 2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl.

The LSU Tigers were pummeled throughout the box score by their species counterparts from Clemson in Atlanta on New Year's Eve. Clemson recorded 24 more first downs, more than doubled up the Bayou Bengals in yardage (437 to 208), only gave up a couple of explosive special teams plays, held Zach Mettenberger to 109 yards, had 12 more minutes time of possession, and only turned the ball over once more than their SEC foes.

But, you know, Les Miles, I guess? /shrug

It came down to the final minute anyway, with Clemson missing a two-point conversion (necessitated by an earlier blocked extra point) and getting a chance at a game-winning drive with two minutes to go. Tajh Boyd and "Nuk" Hopkins strung together a 60-yard drive just long enough for the Tigers to poke through a game-winning field goal as the clock died.

And then this happened:



Box Score Hero: Hopkins caught 190 yards, Jeremy Hill ran for 125 (prrrrrrobably should've given him more than 12 carries!), Kevin Minter posted approximately 11 million tackles and every defensive end recorded about 65 sacks and pressures. Tajh Boyd, also, BAWWWWLLED out, putting up 339 yards and leading that game-winning drive. I'm going with Hopkins.

Rankings Ramifications: Expect both teams to do mighty well in next year's preseason Top 25.

But Did They Cover? LSU was a 3.5-point favorite.

For More On This Game: For more on Tigers football, visit LSU blog And The Valley Shook, plus SEC blog Team Speed Kills. For more Tigers football, visit Clemson blog Shakin' The Southland.

Look through SB Nation's many excellent college football blogs to find your team's community.

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