Inside: One 2017 signee won’t be joining the program; why practices are closed to the media (and when they’ll reopen); an Arden Key update
By JAMES MORAN | Tiger Rag Associate Editor
Stop the presses: Ed Orgeron is excited.
The LSU coach enthusiastically previewed his inaugural training camp as head Tiger on Sunday afternoon before LSU takes to the practice field for the first time Monday.
A new season brings plenty of depth chart holes to fill and a brand-new offense that’s still being installed, but Orgeron was, per usual, fired up about the weeks to come.
“There’s a lot of question marks going into camp that we’ve got to answer,” Orgeron said. “But we have the talent to answer it, the ability to answer it and the coaching staff that’s ready to do the work.”
Here’s the news and noteworthy quotes from Orgeron’s presser.
– Offensive tackle Seth Stewart, a 2017 signee, is no longer part of the football program, Orgeron announced. He didn’t report for camp Sunday with the rest of the team and won’t be enrolling at LSU. Stewart is a three-star prospect out of West Virginia. “He spent a couple days here, and he decided he wanted to move on,” Orgeron said. “We tried to get him to come back, but it’s something he decided he wanted to do. We wish him the best.”
– While training camp practices are closed to the media, as the school announced Friday, Orgeron said reporters will be allowed back in starting on Monday, August 21. The viewing schedule will mirror the viewing periods Orgeron allowed when he took over as interim coach (Monday and Tuesday). The main reason for closing practices, per Orgeron, is that LSU needs the time to complete installation of Matt Canada’s offense. Practice could open sooner if said installation finishes ahead of schedule.
– Edge rusher Arden Key won’t practice Monday, as expected. Orgeron said the All-American linebacker reported at 260 pounds, if not a bit more, and estimated he’ll cut down to 255 pounds for his playing weight. “He’s an extra-ordinary human being,” the coach said.
– Nose tackle Tyler Shelvin was the other 2017 signee who didn’t report Sunday as he continues to complete online course work that must be certified by the NCAA. Orgeron said he won’t report this week but may join the team during the second week of camp.
– Offensive tackle Adrian Magee will take part in fall camp, but his status for the season has yet to be determined, Orgeron said. He was arrested in the spring.
– With the loss of Stewart and uncertainty regarding Magee, Orgeron pointed to offensive tackle depth as one of his biggest concerns going into camp. He named freshmen Austin Deculus and Edward Ingram as tackles who needed to step up and provide depth.
– LSU coaches were given the entire month of July to take off for vacation, an idea Orgeron said he borrowed from Pete Carroll. The first full-staff meeting is set for Sunday night. “I wanted our guys fresh and ready to go for camp,” Orgeron said.
– The Tigers will treat weekend scrimmages like NFL preseason games, Orgeron said. LSU won’t start preparing for BYU until August 21.