The top two offenses in the country clash with a berth in the College Football National Championship Game on the line, when the LSU Tigers and Oklahoma Sooners square off in the Peach Bowl on Saturday. In what should be one of the most entertaining matchups of the bowl season — and the College Football Playoffs — LSU features Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Joe Burrow, while the Sooners are led by Heisman finalist Jalen Hurts. The two teams averaged a combined 1,108.6 yards per game in 2019, according to stats published by The Washington Post, indicating that the Peach Bowl should be an action-packed showdown this year.
The winner goes on to face the victor in the second CFP semifinal of the day, either Clemson or Ohio State, who meet Saturday night in the Fiesta Bowl. The National Championship is set for January 13 in New Orleans.
Though LSU ranked first in offensive yardage and Oklahoma second, the two were separated by just 0.2 yards per game in the offensive rankings. Burrow ranked second in the nation with 4,715 passing yards, while Hurts led in yards per pass attempt with 11.76, according to NCAA.com stats. The Oklahoma quarterback, who transferred from Alabama in January, also brings another, dangerous dimension to his game. He placed 20th in the country in overall rushing with 1,255 yards.
But Burrow led all quarterbacks in touchdown passes with 48, and has a prime target in 19-year-old sophomore wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, who caught 18 of those TD passes from Burrow. Chase also led the country in receiving yards with 1,498.
ESPN’s College Game Day previews the Peach Bowl matchup in the video below.
Though on paper it would seem that there is not much to choose from between top-seeded LSU and fourth-seeded Oklahoma, the Tigers nonetheless enter the Peach Bowl as prohibitive, 13 1/2-point favorites, according to odds published by USA Today.
And that spread comes despite the fact that LSU’s top rusher (1,291 yards, 16 TDs) Clyde Edwards-Helaire appears likely to sit out the playoff semifinal with a hamstring tweak. The 20-year-old junior remains questionable leading up to game time.
The Peach Bowl will mark only the third meeting ever between the two college football powerhouses — and the first since 2004 when then-coach Nick Saban guided the Tigers to a national title under the now-defunct BCS system by defeating Oklahoma 21-14 in that season’s Sugar Bowl.
The only other clash between the Tigers and Sooners came all the way back in 1950 — on the tail end of the 1949 season — when Oklahoma whipped LSU 35-0, also in the Sugar Bowl. The victory was and still is the most one-sided result in the history of that storied bowl game.
The Oklahoma Sooners vs. LSU Tigers Peach Bowl shootout kicks off at 4 p.m. EST at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia. ESPN will televise the game nationally, with live online streaming provided via ESPN.com.