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Outback stakes

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Tampa, FL -

LSU and Iowa will meet in the Outback Bowl, just the second time the Tigers and Hawkeyes faced each other on the football field.  For the Tigers, despite being knocked from the national championship conversation weeks ago, the game still has great significance.

Odell Beckham, Jr. says he and his teammates are motivated to make this senior class the first to ever have four straight ten win seasons.

The teams were extended invitations Sunday for the New Year's Day matchup played at Raymond James Stadium, home of the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The only other meeting between the school with rich football traditions was in the 2005 Capital One Bowl in Orlando. Drew Tate threw a 56-yard touchdown pass to Warren Holloway as time expired to give Iowa 30-25 victory.

"We feel these two teams will continue our reputation of putting on an exciting show," Outback Bowl chairman Ken Hoverman said.

The 14th-ranked Tigers (9-4) are making their first trip to Tampa for postseason action since 1989, when the Outback was known as the Hall of Fame Bowl.

Iowa (8-4) will be making its fourth appearance in Tampa, having last appeared in Outback following the 2008 season when the Hawkeyes beat South Carolina 31-10.

Iowa beat Florida 37-17 to conclude the 2003 season in Tampa, and the Hawkeyes lost to the Gators 31-24 in the game winding up the 2005 season.

LSU coach Les Miles called the annual matchup between representatives from the Southeastern Conference and Big Ten "one of the premier bowl games in college football."

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said his team is excited to be playing a team the caliber of LSU.

Iowa, which went 5-3 in the Big Ten this season, is 14-11-1 all-time in bowl games. The Hawkeyes are 6-4 in bowl games under Ferentz.

"Kirk, his staff, and his team have worked extremely hard since the end of last season, and have been playing great football all year ... especially down the stretch," Iowa athletic director Gary Barta said. "Our team looks forward to returning to the Tampa area, and I know Hawkeye fans are excited to follow our team and get back to the Outback Bowl."

LSU has won five of its past six bowl games and is 22-18-1 all-time. The Tigers lost to Syracuse 23-10 in their last postseason visit to Tampa in 1989.

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