It was the first loss in four bowl tries for Kentucky since Peters had been on the team. That was bad enough, but he felt even worse because Kentucky coach Rich Brooks announced after the game that he likely was going to retire after seven years at Kentucky.
"Knowing this was possibly the last game for him makes this even worse," Peters said as he wiped away tears. "That's when it hit me that it was really over and made me regret a lot of things (about the game). This is not how I wanted my last game to end."
Peters earned all-Southeastern Conference honors for his play and ended the season with 55 tackles, including 11 tackles for loss and four quarterback sacks. He had three tackles and one assist against Clemson.
Peters took a gamble when he signed with Kentucky and not Ohio State, Michigan, Auburn or hometown Louisville following his prep career at Louisville Central where he also qualified for the state wrestling tournament four straight years and was also on the baseball and track teams.
Joker Phillips, who will become UK's head coach if Brooks does retire, was recruiting coordinator when Peters signed with the Cats.
"When you don't hear a kid talking a lot and all he does is make plays, it tells you he has been a great kid. And he makes plays. He lines up every day. I can't remember him missing a game, maybe in his freshman year. He doesn't miss practice. The guy is always here," Phillips said.
"He is not a real big talker. He packs his lunch pail and comes to work and punches the clock and is a guy that stays late in the film room and does extra work."
"I don't know how you could not like him. He's going to be an unbelievable coach some day. That is what he wants to be and there is not a guy on our staff that would not recommend him on anybody's staff."
Peters has been just as valuable off the field as on. He's never been in trouble, something that is no surprise considering he was an honor-roll student in high school, received perfect attendance awards two of his four years in high school and was named a Governor's Scholar.
"The guy has over a 3.0 (grade point average) and makes a ton of plays. He played as good as anybody in this league. There is no way we can go to Louisville and not use that guy's name when you are recruiting," Phillips said. "Everybody knows him in the state and especially in Louisville. It would be crazy not to use him."
Phillips admitted he could almost cry when he thinks about not having Peters back next year to anchor UK's defensive front.
"He trusted us. I didn't want him to come because of Joker Phillips. I wanted him or any player to come because they wanted to be part of Kentucky. I tell them to come because they like the people, not just me." Phillips said.
Don't worry about the buildings. Everybody has buildings and nice facilities and nice academics because you can't survive if you don't. Come here because you like the people around here, not me. Corey did that and I'm very thankful he trusted us all enough to come here."
So is Brooks, who thought Peters' dominant second-half play at Georgia was the reason the Cats won there this season.
"You could not ask for a more outstanding young man. Academically he has been up in the 3.0 (grade-point) range his whole career. He's going to graduate. He is an outstanding representative for the university and football program," Brooks said.
"He is soft spoken, has a big heart and is not afraid to speak out and give his opinion. He is not a beat my chest type of guy. He just goes out and makes play and then makes another one."
Peters was not one of the Wildcats who got caught openly wishing for a "bigger bowl game" this year before UK lost to Mississippi State and Tennessee. For him, he knew any bowl was a plus considering where the program was when he arrived during UK's 2006 Music City Bowl season.