Mardi Gras came seven weeks and two days early for LSU and its legion of fans Sunday night in the Nokia Sugar Bowl.
The only thing missing in a sea of purple and gold on Fat Sunday was the green, but that will come soon enough for coach Nick Saban after he led the Tigers to the school’s first national football title since 1958.
Second-ranked LSU claimed the Bowl Championship Series national crown with a 21-14 win over No. 3 Oklahoma before a noisy throng of 79,342 fans in the Superdome — most of them clad in purple and gold.
LSU picked up the ADT national championship trophy, a $30,000 piece of Waterford crystal in the shape of a football, after completing the winningest season in school history. The 1958 team finished 11-0, capping that magical season with a 7-0 triumph over Clemson in the Sugar Bowl.
Champions of the Southeastern Conference, the Tigers finished with a 13-1 record to earn the BCS title. LSU was ranked 14th in The Associated Press’ preseason poll, while Oklahoma, which ended the season 12-2, was No. 1.