NEW ORLEANS (Jan. 14, 2020) – The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame today recognized No. 1 LSU (15-0) as the recipient of the 2019 NFF MacArthur Bowl Championship Trophy, following their 42-25 victory over No. 3 Clemson (14-1) yesterday in the College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship Presented by AT&T before a crowd of 76,885 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. An event formally presenting and honoring the team will take place at the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta this spring.
“On behalf of the National Football Foundation, our 12,000 members and our board of directors, and Chairman Archie Manning, we are extremely proud to recognize Coach Ed Orgeron and the Tigers,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “This trophy was started in 1959 by General Douglas MacArthur, Grantland Rice, the great sports writer and legendary coach Red Blaik, and etched on the side of this stadium replica in all silver are all of the subsequent national champions. As the keepers of the history and the legacy of the sport of college football, we are exceptionally pleased to engrave the 2019 LSU team on its walls.”
LSU’s name will be carved alongside the greatest teams in college football history and for the third time on the MacArthur Bowl, which is housed at the Hall in Atlanta. LSU is 15-0 for the first time in school history and is just the second team in FBS history to go 15-0 in a season. Seven of LSU’s 15 wins came against teams ranked in the Top 10, the most of any team in college football history.
“It’s an honor to be here today representing Louisiana State University, the National Championship, the Fighting LSU Tigers,” said Orgeron. “So proud of our football team. I do believe it’s one of the greatest accomplishments in football history. So proud of Joe Burrow, the leadership that he brought to our football team; he’s one of the best football players I’ve seen in a long time. He’s even a better young man. So proud of our coaching staff, the job that they did all year. We started working last January 17th [which] was our first football school. We’ve worked one year, and I reminded the team how we got here.”
Orgeron’s 2019 Tigers were led by Burrows, who claimed offensive MVP honors and set multiple records in a CFP title game, including passing for 463 yards and five touchdowns. The Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback also ran for 58 yards and another score, which gave him six TDs on the night for an additional CFP record. Tiger linebacker Patrick Queen made eight tackles, including 2.5 tackles for loss and 0.5 sacks, to claim defensive MVP honors.
With the win, LSU claims the MacArthur Bowl for the third time in the school’s history. The Tigers previously won the MacArthur Bowl in 2003 under coach Nick Saban and again in 2007 under Les Miles. (LSU also won a national crown in 1958 with Paul Dietzel as the coach. The year before the NFF began presenting the MacArthur Bowl.) A team in the SEC has now claimed the trophy 17 times.
Presented to every national champion since 1959, the MacArthur Bowl represents the pinnacle of team achievement in college sports, and each year during its 61-year history a new name has been etched alongside the greatest teams of all time. The trophy, a replica of a football stadium, features archways with space to engrave the names of 100 teams and miniature goal posts. The trophy was the gift of an anonymous donor, who commissioned Tiffany & Co. to craft it from 400 ounces of silver, in honor of NFF founder General Douglas A. MacArthur. It took eight months to make, and the trophy features MacArthur’s famous quote: “There is no substitute for victory.”
Twenty-four different schools have claimed the trophy at least once during its 61-year history. Alabama has hoisted it the most, claiming it an unprecedented eight times. Notre Dame is second with five wins while Ohio State, Miami (Fla.), Southern California and Texas have each etched their names four times on the trophy. Clemson, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Nebraska and Oklahoma each boast being three-time recipients. Michigan State and Penn State have each won the trophy twice.
During college football’s Poll Era, the NFF MacArthur Bowl Committee selected the recipient of the trophy. With the advent of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) in 1998, the national championship game determined which team claimed the MacArthur Bowl, a tradition that has continued with the College Football Playoff.
First presented in 1959, NFF National Champions and MacArthur Bowl recipients include: Syracuse 1959, Minnesota 1960, Alabama 1961, Southern California 1962, Texas 1963, Notre Dame 1964, Michigan State 1965, Michigan State/Notre Dame 1966, Southern California 1967, Ohio State 1968, Texas 1969, Ohio State/Texas 1970, Nebraska 1971, Southern California 1972, Notre Dame 1973, Southern California 1974, Oklahoma 1975, Pittsburgh 1976, Notre Dame 1977, Alabama 1978, Alabama 1979, Georgia 1980, Clemson 1981, Penn State 1982, Miami (FL) 1983, Brigham Young 1984, Oklahoma 1985, Penn State 1986, Miami (FL) 1987, Notre Dame 1988, Miami (FL) 1989, Colorado 1990, Washington 1991, Alabama 1992, Florida State 1993, Nebraska 1994, Nebraska 1995, Florida 1996, Michigan 1997, Tennessee 1998, Florida State 1999, Oklahoma 2000, Miami (FL) 2001, Ohio State 2002, Louisiana State 2003, Vacated 2004, Texas 2005, Florida 2006, LSU 2007, Florida 2008, Alabama 2009, Auburn 2010, Alabama 2011, Alabama 2012, Florida State 2013, Ohio State 2014, Alabama 2015, Clemson 2016, Alabama 2017, Clemson 2018 and LSU in 2019.