Sugar Bowl Football

Alabama linebacker Terrell Lewis (24) reacts after nearly intercepting a pass in Sugar Bowl against Clemson in New Orleans on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The College Football Playoff National Championship Game will be trading San Francisco cable cars for New Orleans street cars next season.

Officials from the CFP Bay Area organizing committee will ceremonially hand off hosting duties Tuesday to the committee from New Orleans, kicking off the year-long run up to the next CFP National Championship Game. That game is set for Jan. 13, 2020, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

This will be the first CFP Championship Game for New Orleans. The city has already twice hosted CFP semifinals in the Sugar Bowl as part of the set six-bowl rotation following the 2014 and 2017 seasons. CFP title games are awarded on a bid basis, with the first 10 going to 10 different venues.

CFP championship games and semifinals for the next five seasons are as follows:

• 2019-20 — Semifinals: Peach and Fiesta bowls (Dec. 28); Championship Game: New Orleans (Jan. 13)

• 2020-21 — Semifinals: Sugar and Rose bowls (Jan. 1); Championship Game: Miami (Jan. 11)

• 2021-22 — Semifinals: Cotton and Orange bowls (Dec. 31); Championship Game: Indianapolis (Jan. 10)

• 2022-23 — Semifinals: Peach and Fiesta bowls (Dec. 31); Championship Game: Los Angeles (Jan. 9)

• 2023-24 — Semifinals: Sugar and Rose bowls (Jan. 1); Championship Game: Houston (Jan. 8)

Young, Ismail headline HOF class

Former Texas quarterback Vince Young and Notre Dame kick returner/wide receiver Ragib “Rocket” Ismail headlined the 15 member Class of 2019 for the College Football Hall of Fame announced here Monday.

Also making the class were:Arkansas running back Darren McFadden, Ole Miss linebacker Patrick Willis, Texas A&M defensive lineman Jacob Green, Southern California defensive back Troy Polamalu, Michigan State running back Lorenzo White, Miami (Florida) coach Dennis Erickson, Florida State defensive back Terrell Buckley, Oklahoma defensive back Rickey Dixon, N.C. State wide receiver Torry Holt, Arizona State quarterback Jake Plummer, John Carroll (Ohio) linebacker London Fletcher, Wisconsin offensive lineman Joe Thomas and Hampton and Florida A&M coach Joe Taylor.

No players with Louisiana ties or former New Orleans Saints were selected. Former LSU All-American running back Kevin Faulk, now the football program’s director of player development, former Saints Jahri Evans and Vaughn Dunbar and former Louisiana Tech coach Maxie Lambright were among those on the ballot.

The Class of 2019 will be formally inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame on Dec. 10 in New York.

The last time …

Monday’s champion becomes the first major college football team to go 15-0 since Penn way back in 1897. NCAA FCS champion North Dakota State also went 15-0 this season.

Did you know?

Since 2013, only four FBS teams have not lost a game to a team that finished worse than .500: LSU, Alabama, Florida and Michigan.

Local teacher honored

Brusly High school English teacher Kimberley Eckert was among 53 2018 state teachers of the year honored on the field before Monday's game. They were here as part of the College Football Playoff Foundation's "Extra Yards for Teachers" program.

Eckert described herself as a "very neutral" college football fan, though her husband and sister who accompanied her to Santa Clara are big LSU fans.

Eckert also is in charge of the Educators Rising program at Brusly High, designed to encourage students to seek careers as teachers.

"We need to attract the best and brightest," Eckert said. "Students need to see their teachers as heroes."

A matter of geography

Much has been made of the distance both teams and their fan bases have had to travel for this year’s CFP final.

Alabama and Clemson are a combined 4,140 miles from Santa Clara, roughly the distance from Jacksonville, Florida, to Nome, Alaska.

For last year’s final in Atlanta, Alabama and Georgia only had to travel a combined 245 miles.


This was the 58th meeting between No. 1- and No. 2-ranked teams since The Associated Press poll began in 1936. The No. 1-ranked team entered Monday with a 30-24-3 record. … The Southeastern Conference was a combined 6-5 in bowl games entering Monday night. The Atlantic Coast Conference was 5-5. … New Orleans rapper Lil' Wayne performed during the halftime show with the group Imagine Dragons. … Game officials were from the Big Ten Conference.

Follow Scott Rabalais on Twitter, @RabalaisAdv.​