Orgeron is out; Is LSU an attractive destination to coach football?

Ed Orgeron, LSU athletic director Scott Woodward press conference: 'This is  a bittersweet day.' - YouTube

On February 7th, 1912, a superhuman was born.

That was the day Roy Sullivan, a seemingly normal human, took his first breath in Greene County, Virginia.

By day, Sullivan was a mild-mannered park ranger for the Shenandoah National Park. By night, he was known as the “Human Lighting Rod.”

Sullivan earned this nickname after being struck by lightning seven different times in the span of 35 years. He holds the Guinness World Record as the person struck by lightning more than any other human in the history of the world.

While a remarkable feat, having the ability to attract lighting bolts to oneself isn’t really a superpower found in the pages of a marvel comic.

Some would even say that getting struck by lighting on numerous occasions is more of a curse than a superpower. 

After all, the odds of being struck seven times in an 80 year period are 1 in 10 to the 28th power. That sounds fairly unlucky.

The odds for Ed Orgeron to be the head coach for LSU in the 2022 season were far bleaker than 1 in 10 to the 28th power, and the LSU administration finally put an end to the speculation Sunday when they announced that the school and Orgeron have agreed to mutually part ways at the end of the season.

The news wasn’t shocking to any Tiger fans who own televisions and actually watch the team play football, but the timing of the announcement coming on the heels of LSU’s 49-42 upset win against the No. 20 Florida Gators on Saturday was a bit of a surprise.

Orgeron and LSU athletic director Scott Woodward held a press conference Sunday night to discuss the decision to close the curtain on this era of Tiger football and take questions from the media.

During this press conference, Woodward made it abundantly clear that the wins, or lack thereof, and losses and the current direction of the program were the reasons behind the separation. It’s also been no secret as of late that Orgeron’s off-field issues have played a significant role in the floundering culture of this program, and expect more stories of his missteps to come to light in the next few months.

However, there are many people outside of the program and the state of Louisiana that are puzzled by the decision to part ways with a coach at the helm of, arguably, the greatest team in college football history and 2019 national champions just two years removed from said title.

One of these confused individuals is Big 10 cheerleader and Fox Sports commentator Joel Klatt.

After Orgeron’s firing became public on Sunday, Klatt went so far as to question whether or not LSU was “an attractive destination” for a college football coach.

The clear response to such a ridiculous assertion is that LSU has competed for four national championships in the last 20 years, and the last three coaches in charge of the Tigers have won the big game. Alabama is the only other FBS program that has achieved more impressive feats in the same timeframe.

Yet, Klatt, a foolish person’s intellectual, retorted on his Twitter account by making the claim that two of the Tigers’ last three coaches were “run out of town.”

Clearly, Klatt hasn’t been paying too much attention to the news.

Orgeron is not being “run out of town” by some group of spoiled LSU brats who refuse to sit through a few seasons without a national championship. Orgeron is being fired for his chronic inability to hire competent and qualified assistant coaches. This coupled with his, now well-documented, off-field issues and erratic and abusive tendencies to players and staff is the reason that LSU has decided to go in a different coaching direction.

Orgeron’s failure to win games is merely a symptom of the underlying problems. A rational person also wouldn’t say that Orgeron’s predecessor Les Miles was “run out of town” either.

After a runner-up performance in the 2011 national championship game, LSU’s ensuing Southeastern Conference records were 6-2, 5-3, 4-4, and 5-3, respectively. 

Notice a trend?

Miles’s teams began a slow regression, largely due to his inability to keep up with the modernization of the college football offense.

Oh, and there was the whole issue with the accusations of his inappropriate relationships with students on campus.

To suggest that Orgeron and Miles were run out of town under some ridiculous assumption that they were great coaches and good leaders of men is to ignore the facts. To question whether LSU is an attractive destination for a coach is the narrative equivalent of shoving a square peg in a round hole.

The good news is Klatt’s opinion is not relevant to the LSU administration or the coaching candidates the Tigers will pursue. The Tiger athletic department will do what they have always done: hire a coach to lead the only power five school in the talent-rich state of Louisiana to a national championship. The odds of the next coach doing so are extremely favorable based on the history books, and whichever person accepts the challenge will be well-compensated.

Klatt will continue commentating on football games for the Little 10, where apparently fans have much lower expectations than the standards LSU fans have here: be a competent coach with no off-field issues.

Unfortunately for Klatt’s conference, the odds of having sustained and consistent success with such low expectations is somewhere around 1 and 10 to the 28th power.

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