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Published: Sunday, 1/20/2008

LSU celebrates national title

ASSOCIATED PRESS

BATON ROUGE, La. - About 25,000 fans turned out in chilly conditions yesterday to celebrate LSU's national football championship.

"I got chills when I was carrying that flag," star defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey said after the 75-minute event at Tiger Stadium. "Today was a day of closure for my four years at LSU. It has been unbelievable."

Dorsey was the last player introduced at the party to celebrate the Tigers' 38-24 win over Ohio State on Jan. 7. All but three members of the 2007 team - Jacob Hester, Chevis Jackson and Andrew Decker - were there.

The 2007 national championship flag was raised at the end of the ceremony. National championship trophies from four organizations were presented to LSU coach Les Miles and team captains Dorsey, Patrick Fisher, Matt Flynn and Craig Steltz.

The four trophies were the MacArthur Bowl National Championship, the Football Writers Trophy, The Associated Press Trophy and the BCS National Championship Trophy.

Southeastern Conference commissioner and BCS coordinator Mike Slive made the presentation for the BCS trophy and his league's championship trophy.

"This is the third time I've had the privilege of sharing the podium with these great athletes and these great coaches," Slive told the crowd. "I can tell you there is a special aura about them. They have earned your respect and your admiration as they have mine."

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Kip Holden also appeared at the event.

"This is a team that never gave up," Jindal said. "They didn't care what anybody said about them. They didn't care if they were winning or losing. They gave their best efforts on the field and off the field.

"They showed the nation that Louisiana is No. 1 in the entire country."

Miles was impressed by the turnout on an ugly weather afternoon.

"Seeing these people out here with the wind chill about 30 degrees was great," Miles said. "This is an exciting time for LSU. Putting this team together one more time and being with the crowd was special. It was awfully touching."

Miles told the players, "You certainly are the most competitive football team that I have ever been around. There was never a time where an injury had to be played around. This football team did anything to find a way to win. Above all else, this was a great team."

/AP-CS-01-19-08 1947EST



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