LSU has called press conference for Noon on Saturday
By JAMES MORAN | Tiger Rag Associate Editor
LSU’s search for a new full-time football coach has finished.
It didn’t have to look far.
LSU offered interim coach Ed Orgeron the full-time job early Saturday morning and the 55-year-old Cajun accepted. He’ll be formally introduced as LSU’s permanent coach at a press conference set for noon Saturday, sources confirmed to Tiger Rag on Saturday.
The news was first reported by Ross Dellenger of The Advocate and the website FootballScoop.com. It’s since been confirmed by ESPN and various other outlets.
As reported here, Orgeron met with LSU AD Joe Alleva on Friday morning to discuss his candidacy for the full-time job. He brought with him a binder containing plans for the program’s future, a source said, which was believed to contain a short list of candidates to target as Orgeron’s offensive coordinator. His top target will be Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, who Orgeron has described as a “personal friend” in addition to working under Kiffin at past coaching stops at Tennessee and USC.
As of Friday, LSU had narrowed its search down to Orgeron and Houston coach Tom Herman. But, according to reports from The Advocate and FootballScoop.com, once Herman told LSU leaders he was leaning toward the soon-to-be-open vacancy at Texas, LSU made the decision to hire Orgeron.
More information will be added to this report as it becomes available.
The saga that began last November with the expected firing of Les Miles with Jimbo Fisher reportedly set to succeed him, then Miles’s reprieve only to be fired four games into this season, followed by the interim appointment of Ed Orgeron and now his hiring as permanent coach is one of the most embarrassing fiascos in the history of LSU athletics.
Alleva’s introduction of Orgeron at the press conference was a sad effort to put a positive spin on hiring his third choice (at best). The best Joe could say about his new coach is that he loves LSU, is passionate about coaching, has a large heart, and motivated his team to bounce back from two bitter losses (in one of which Orgeron and his staff were soundly outcoached by Jim McElwain, whom no one rates as a wizard).
All commentators the last few weeks have agreed that LSU is one of the top five – some said top three – football coaching positions in the U.S. And all Alleva could come up with was Ed Orgeron.
This reminds me of the promotion of Mike Archer to replace Bill Arnsparger in 1986 when Steve Spurrier was dying to get the LSU job. Mike did well the first year, not so well the next, then started LSU on an unimaginable six years without a bowl game.
I’ll be rooting for Coach O as hard as anyone, but count me among those who are fearful of the future, not optimistic.