Coach O dodges questions on off-the-field matters that have piled up

LSU head football coach Ed Orgeron found himself having to field his share of off-the-field questions as the ones pertaining to his team’s performance on the field during its spring practice which enters its next-to-last week.

Orgeron offered no comments on two fronts; the first when asked about his decision to submit a letter to District 15 State Sen. Regina Barrow instead of accepting her invitation to appear Thursday before the Senate Select Committee on Women and Children to address allegations whether or not he spoke on the phone to Superdome security officer Gloria Scott, who said she was sexually harassed by former LSU running back Derrius Guice.

When asked to respond to Scott’s statement, claiming it was “troubling” that Orgeron chose to write a letter instead of attending the hearing in person, he offered the following:

“I made my release this morning,” Orgeron said during his post practice news conference Tuesday. “I said what I had to say, and I’ll leave it at that.”

Orgeron didn’t respond to a question as to who was ultimately responsible for him submitting a letter to Sen. Barrow instead of testifying in person.

When asked if he had seen a $50 million lawsuit from LSU associate athletic director for recruiting Sharon Lewis against the university, which did not name Orgeron, he said:

“I can’t comment on that,” he said. “The university will handle that.”

Orgeron did read from a prepared statement when asked about wide receiver Koy Moore, who claimed he was harassed and violated when he was encountered by three Baton Rouge police officers last November.

BRPD released Bodycam video from the incident public on Tuesday where all three officers were cleared of any wrongdoing.

“I’m grateful Koy’s safe and thankful the Baton Rouge Police Department for being transparent with us throughout the whole process,” he said. “I hope that it’s something we all can move forward.”

When asked if he had seen a $50 million lawsuit from LSU associate athletic director for recruiting Sharon Lewis against the university, which did not name Orgeron, he said:

“I can’t comment on that,” he said. “The university will handle that.”

Here’s what else Orgeron had to say:

Opening statement

“Very proud of them for protecting the team over the weekend. Very well-behaved, hungry football team. Came back with a great attitude. We had an outstanding practice today. It was a big, physical practice. We went over third down and one, short yardage. I thought our offense did a pretty good job, the defense responded to a big run drill on third down and six-plus. Our defense did a good job with some pressures. Garrett Nussmeier did a good job with some scrambles. I thought overall it was a good day.”

On any clarity on a possible return of Arik Gilbert

“Arik did come. We had a good meeting. No decision’s been made. He was happy and everyone was happy to see him. We checked with compliance to make sure everything we were doing was on the up and up and that he could come talk to us. He left and hasn’t told us anything yet. I think it’s still up in the air, but it was a very positive day when he came.”

On the plan to give the four quarterbacks equitable opportunities in April 17 spring game

“We haven’t talked about it yet, but we’re going to give them all a fair shot. We said we’d give them all a fair shot throughout the spring and part of the (fall) camp there will be a time where two guys will have to get that the reps but we’re not close to making that decision now. There’s a lot of reps to go. I thought Myles had a great day last Thursday, but it changes every day. Those guys are battling and I’m very proud of them.”

On whether not naming a starting QB helps them stay motivated

“I hope they’re just very competitive. I guess is causes some nervousness, they know everything’s on the line every practice and everyone’s watching. That’s the only fair way to do it.”

On Garrett Nussmeier believing he’s brought a Joe Burrow-like quality to the program

“I don’t want to put that on him yet. Joe was very special. I do see some similarities as far as leadership, his ability to make plays. I think he’s only going to get better here; I think he’s going to be a great quarterback here. I’m very pleased with him.”

On managing the quarterbacks meeting room

“(Offensive coordinator) Jake’s (Peetz) doing a great job. I was honest with them and said Max would take the first snap. Everything’s competitive. We graded everything. We’re going to rotate ya’ll, we’re going to give you equal reps and so far, we’ve done that. I think the guys, all four of them, will tell you we’ve been very fair with them. It’s not time to name a starter. There will come a time in camp where it will become tight and somebody’s going to be unhappy. That’s the way it is. That’s the quarterback position. I don’t know if we’re going to have a Joe Burrow again. I hope we do. I think he’s the best quarterback I’ve ever been with. It’s the best quarterback room from top to bottom. We have four guys that are pretty good quarterbacks and they’re all competing.”

On the approach to official visits if the dead period is lifted

“We feel good about our (recruiting) class coming. We’ll have the same approach. The guys in state can always come unofficially if they allow us. That’s something we wanted. We want them to come unofficially as many times as they can where their families can be on campus and show them academics. We want them to come on an official visit after the season when it comes close to signing day. That’s always been our philosophy. If a player says he wants to decide early, and I need to take an official visit we’ll make an exception. Out of state, guys that really interested in us, we’re going to visit those guys in June because they can’t come during the season.”

On whether early enrollees Landon Jackson and Deion Smith been able to practice

“They’re both out. Landon Jackson had a pretty good break and it’s going to take him a while. But he’s a big, good looking kid. I can’t wait to see him. He works hard. Deion Smith is a really talented played and had a tremendous foot injury in high school. Is coming back but is not ready to go yet.”

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