Les Miles says LSU striving 'to be seen as one of the best teams in college football'

'We're playing a very quality opponent. There's a challenge there'

AP file photo by Stephen Morkon

AP file photo by Stephen Morkon

LSU isn't playing for the national title this season, but that doesn't mean the Tigers aren't setting their goals sky-high heading into their Chick-fil-A Bowl match-up against Clemson on New Year's Eve.

"Our football team wants to be seen as one of the best teams in college football," said LSU coach Les Miles during his team's press conference last week with Chick-fil-Bowl officials. "The goal there is not so much the finishing number, but how we can play and what we can accomplish on the field.

Bowl win crucial for momentum

"We're playing a very quality opponent. There's a challenge there, and it's all motivation of playing and matching yourself up against a very quality football team. We're really looking forward to that competition and a quality finish to a year of achievement."

LSU came oh-so-close to being in the thick of the national title picture again this year, and Miles said it's appropriate that his team's match-up with Clemson is being hailed as one of the season's best bowl games - widely viewed as better than at least half of the BCS pairings.

"Our football team really is anxious for a quality game," Miles said. "We're looking for a bowl game that's a great match-up, and certainly those Clemson Tigers are a very, very talented football team. I think that our matchup is likely one that will be one of the more exciting games in college football during the bowl season and very likely better than some of the BCS games.

"We're very familiar with what Dabo Swinney and the Clemson Tigers have accomplished. They're a very talented football team and we look forward to that match-up."

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