BATON ROUGE, La. — Chicago mayor Rahm Emmanuel is credited with coining the phrase “Never let a serious crisis go to waste.” This week, LSU coach Ed Orgeron has his opportunity to perfect the concept.
Because things are unquestionably messy at the moment.
Losing to Troy is one thing, even if the Trojans looked far from your average Sun Belt squad. But the way it happened is the disturbing part, because every one of LSU’s weaknesses was put on display at the same time.
On the field, the Trojans controlled both lines of scrimmage. On the sidelines, Troy coached circles around the LSU guys with quite a few more zeroes tacked on to the end of their paychecks.
Yet in a weird way, it may have been the best possible way for LSU to lose a game. Everything was exposed. No one can hide. Warts cannot be glossed over until they are exposed in a more important game down the road.
Complete accountability begins now — and it starts at the top.
Meddlin’ Ed Orgeron got himself fired at Ole Miss, and he promised that phase of his life was over when he was the interim head coach at USC. But last week Meddlin’ Ed made an unwelcomed return when he asked Matt Canada to simplify the offense against Troy. That offense turned out to be so simple that it produced zero points.
When Canada was allowed to be something closer to himself in the second half, LSU scored 3 touchdowns. The only trouble was that by that time, it was too late.
On Monday, Orgeron made it clear that he’s not going to make the same mistake twice. The offensive coordinator will do all coordinating of the offense moving forward.
From a purely pragmatic perspective, this is the right move. Orgeron needs to let Canada sink or swim on his own. Orgeron is safe for now. LSU is not paying a $12 million buyout to get rid of him. Canada is far more expendable. And if he fails doing his thing, at least he failed honestly. If he fails because he was handcuffed, then it becomes Orgeron’s fault and it lingers over the program.
The X’s and O’s should be a quick fix. It’s not quite the same with personnel, though in the case of the defensive line, help is on the way. Nose tackle Ed Alexander and defensive end Rashard Lawrence should be able to play this week. End Frank Herron will make his return against Auburn. The Tigers might finally have the ability to rotate enough to play four strong quarters up front.
As far as the offensive line goes, the Tigers have no miracle cure. Canada has to find a way to call plays that help that limited group function the best it can. The upside, if any exists, is that offensive line recruits know they’ll have a shot at making an immediate impact next year.
Florida week seems like an inopportune time for all of these problems to be exposed. But it actually might be the right opponent at exactly the right time.
Instead of focusing on the bitterness of last year’s defeat and getting caught up in those emotions with a war of words against the Gators, the Tigers are inwardly focused on their own issues. After the multitude of team meetings and coaches meetings that marked the last week, a road trip could be what’s needed to pull a potentially fracturing group back together.
This week wouldn’t even have to end with win to be considered a success — if we get a game where LSU actually looks and feels like LSU is supposed to for the first time in a month, it’s a step in the right direction. That’s a humbling place for this program to be, but that’s the reality of the Tigers current position — one where I can advocate for a moral victory with a straight face. At least it would give hope for the rest of a schedule that lightens up with the exception of Auburn and Alabama.
If things don’t show signs of improving this week, it won’t become a crisis gone to waste — it will become a crisis that threatens to lay the Tigers to waste.
Source : https://www.seccountry.com/lsu/ed-orgeron-crisis-lsu-florida