2007 BCS Champions

2007 BCS
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2003 BCS National Champions

2003 BCS
National Champions

1958 National Champions

National Champions

NCAA Baseball Championships:



DandyDon is proud to recognize David Toms as a great ambassador of the Tiger Nation.


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11/26/15 5:40 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

The first thing I’d like to do today is wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving. I’d also like to thank all of you who emailed me with your kind words concerning the Thanksgiving message I posted yesterday. It’s great to know that so many of you can relate to the recollections, observations and values expressed in my Dad’s stories of simpler times in the 30s and 40s, or to my stories of growing up in the 70s and 80s. For many of you, reading those stories brought back magnificent memories of family and all the things we have in our lives for which to be thankful, and to me that’s what today is all about. If you missed it in yesterday’s report, I hope you’ll take a moment to click here and read my annual Thanksgiving message.

Now for our normal order of business… 

Speaking on the SEC coaches teleconference yesterday, Coach Miles did his best to keep the focus on this weekend’s regular season finale against Texas A&M. He said he has not spoken to Athletic Director Joe Alleva since last Sunday and declined to defend or make a case for himself, saying only “I love the place. I'm going to work hard. I’m not going to get into what is my view.” With today being Thanksgiving, I am going to kind of play my hand similarly and instead of spending too much time speculating about Les Miles’ future, all I’ll say at the moment is this: I think Joe Alleva’s silence in this matter is very telling. If the wheels were not already in motion to replace Les Miles, I would like to think Alleva would have already come out and shown his support of a coach that has given 11 years of his life to the betterment of LSU football. I could say more, but out of respect for all parties involved, and for this special day, I will simply say that right now all signs point to big changes coming our way in the very near future. 

Signs of change were never more evident than in last night’s Les Miles Radio show, and man, what it an emotional show it was. I’ve got to admit, it really tugged at my heartstrings for several reasons: 1) The distinct possibility of it being Les Miles’ last show; 2) The realization that it was Jim Hawthorne’s last regular season show; and 3) The memories it brought back of the first time I wrote the recap for my Dad from the lobby of MD Anderson as he received chemotherapy a few doors down. I remember sitting at my father’s bedside, waiting for the nurse to come back to administer his next shot, when Dad looked up at the clock and said, “It’s 7:00. Time for the Les Miles show.” I regarded him inquisitively, as if to say, “what are we going to do about that?” His answer was an affirming nod toward the door, one that said, “Go ahead. You can do it.” I walked out to the lobby with my laptop and earbuds to give it my best shot, and before the show was over I noticed him standing over my shoulder watching with an approving smile as I typed away. In the nearly four years since that time, I’ve recapped every one of Les Miles’ shows except two - once when a family obligation didn’t allow, and last night when I was visiting with family who have come in to celebrate Thanksgiving. Instead of taking notes throughout the broadcast as I usually do, my brother and I sat and listened to the show together, and I’m really thankful that I didn’t miss what turned out to be a touching tribute to Les Miles. For those of you who did miss it, don’t worry. Mark, my assistant, volunteered to recap the show for me, and you can find his very thorough write-up below.

Les Miles Show - November 25, 2015

Coach Miles began the show by noting that there is lots to be thankful for - his coaches, the great community, and especially the great players. He noted his team is a little heartsick over the recent losses,and said they would like to see the stadium filled this Saturday for what will be fifteen seniors’ final game.

The first caller of the night was Ron from Kenner who thanked Miles for all the wonderful memories. Ron then asked why Coach Miles would run the same play six straight times and why Brandon Harris was having problems getting plays in. Miles said they’ve never run a play six straight times, but noted if they can get good yards out of a play consistently, they will run it until the opponent adjusts. Regarding Harris’ trouble getting plays in, there was a 3rd and 8 where they committed a penalty and Ole Miss used some of the clock deciding whether to accept the penalty. Miles felt they should have had that time back. Harris signaled for a timeout at the last second, but the referee failed to see it.

Ricky from Birmingham called and said reports of Miles’ demise have been greatly exaggerated. He then asked if the problems with the line are related to technique or strength. Miles said the guys are strong and capable. It’s an issue of youth. 

A gentleman from Pineville congratulated Hawthorne on his retirement and said he has enjoyed listening to him for many years, then expressed his gratitude to Les Miles for all that he’s done and wished him the best of luck. The caller’s question was whether quick slants or bubble screens would help keep defenses from stacking the box against the run. Miles said they did run some slants for small gains and had a screen for a good gain, but two other screens didn’t go well. Miles noted they moved the football for 500 yards.

John asked if Miles tried to recruit Chad Kelly, and if not, why? Miles said Cam Cameron looked at Chad Kelly and liked him very much but didn’t have success in “making the connection.” 

Kevin from Baton Rouge called and wanted to know whether we can showcase our wide receivers’ talent more and asked what the typical game day regiment is. Miles said he’d love to showcase the wide receivers’ talents more but weren’t able to have the type of success they wanted last week. Miles said the team typically sleeps in until 10, has chapel at 10:15, eats brunch at 11:30-11:45, meets as a team to go over specific game plan items, returns to their rooms to rest, has an early afternoon dinner, gets dressed, gets on the bus and goes down Victory Hill.

The next two callers gave very touching statements of gratitude to Coach Miles for all he’s done, but it was after those two that things really got emotional. Sadie, the young girl from Denton, Texas, who is almost always the first caller of the show, made a special trip down to Baton Rouge to be in the live audience this time. Many in the audience, and on the listening airwaves, were brought to tears when she began crying while asking Miles a question about the offense. Miles reached out for her, brought her onto the stage and answered her face-to-face.

Another regular on the show, The Big Ragoo, was next to take the mike and he also got choked up while telling Miles what a good man and class act he is. Ragoo then asked about the status of wide receiver Travin Dural. Miles said Dural’s leg snapped back and stretched his hamstring very significantly and required surgery. (It was noted earlier in yesterday’s report that Dural will require three months to fully recover).

Back to the phone lines, Brant from New Orleans told Coach he's an Ohio State grad but thinks Miles is a great coach and that it would be a big mistake to get rid of him. He also stated that the school should spend the $15 million buyout money on education instead. He then told Miles that if they don’t keep him, he should keep the money, retire, take his family around the world and have fun. Miles said it’s not in his nature to not do anything, and that vacations are not on his list.

Sidney from Baton Rouge called to express his anger for the way Miles has been treated through this whole affair and said the AD should “man up” and speak to Miles. He then said he hopes Miles is back next year, but if not, “thanks for everything.” Miles said it’s never been about the coach; it’s always about the players, making sure they showcase their talent, play defense, offense and special teams and do the other things they’re supposed to do. It’s about the team, the school, and this great opportunity. 

Bradley from Kentwood noted he fell in love with LSU football the last 11 years with Miles as the coach and thanked him for being a great example. He added that Miles is on the “Mount Rushmore” of football coaches and appreciates everything he’s done. He asked Miles what he thinks about the renewed rivalry with A&M. Miles said he respects A&M and the rivalry, and that LSU better be ready to play.

Ben from Gonzales called to show his support and said Miles deserves at least one more year. He noted the adversity Miles had to face with unexpected travel to Arizona State in his first season after Hurricane Katrina and beating Miami in the bowl game that same year. He also noted that LSU is the only SEC team to beat Texas A&M every time since they joined the league,  and implored Miles to beat them one more time. Miles ended that portion of the show with a very fitting line, saying, “that’s a great idea –  beat them one more time.”

Say what you will about Les Miles, but he’s handled this whole ordeal with great class, and for that I am very thankful. Whatever may transpire in the next week, I hope the administration handles it likewise.  

Since this is Thanksgiving Day, I hope you don’t mind if I cut this update short. It’s time for me to head to the kitchen and begin preparing for the big day. Thank you once again for your readership, and have a great day.


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11/25/15 5:55 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

I know that many of you will be traveling tomorrow, so I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving. Those of you who’ve followed this site for a while know that Thanksgiving is a very special time of year for me, just as it was for my Dad, “Dandy Don” Long. Every year at this time, Dad would give thanks for his many blessings and remind us that as great as LSU sports are, there are more important things in life. I think that’s a great tradition worth continuing, and today I intend to do just that by sharing with you my fourth annual Thanksgiving Message. In it, you’ll find links to my Dad’s legendary Thanksgiving stories about the good ol’ days gone by, as well my own stories that I shared with you last year about how this website came to be, and about my life as a kid in the 70s and 80s. As lagniappe, I’ve included links to a few of our recipes that you might find useful this time of year, and to a poem written by one of our readers that was inspired by Dad’s stories. I hope you find it enjoyable and worth sharing with your families. 

Before moving on with our normal order of business, I want to thank all of you who emailed me with regard to the message I posted yesterday about the handling of Les Miles. I’ve been publishing this site for a long time, and I can tell you without a doubt that I received more email about that one post than any I’ve ever written. My sincere thanks goes out to each of you who chimed in. I stated yesterday that I thought I would get a lot of email from people who disagreed with my stance, but I was pleasantly surprised to find quite the opposite. Of the hundreds of fans I heard from, I’d say 95% agreed that the way things were handled Monday was wrong, and probably 80% expressed that they wish Les Miles would have a chance to right the ship in 2016, although many realize that it’s probably too far gone for that now. That’s all I want to say about that today because there’s really nothing more to report at this time, and Coach Miles and LSU have a game to play this Saturday – a very big one at that. With that said, let’s jump right to our weekly stat-comparison.

LSU-Texas A&M Stat Comparison

stats LSU AM

• The two biggest surprises I noted in these stats are that LSU is averaging more points on offense (31.9 vs 30.3) but is allowing more points on defense (25.7 vs 21.8) than A&M. After allowing 22.6 points per game during a 7-0 start to the season, LSU’s defense has allowed 33 points per contest while the offense has only averaged 15.7 per contest the last three games (Alabama, Arkansas and Ole Miss). On the flip side, after starting 5-0 on the season, Texas A&M has gone 3-3 with wins over South Carolina (35-28), Western Carolina (41-17) and Vanderbilt (25-0) and losses at home to Alabama (41-23) and Auburn (26-10) and at Ole Miss (23-3). In its last five SEC games, A&M is only averaging 19.2 points per game and is allowing 23.6, which includes last week’s 25-0 shutout at Vanderbilt.

• While LSU typically leans heavily on the run, A&M under head coach Kevin Sumlin has heavily leaned on the pass until this season. With Kyle Allen (3 INTs vs Alabama) and Kyler Murray (3 INTs vs Auburn and 2 INTs vs Western Carolina) struggling at quarterback, A&M has moved more towards running the football and has a 52/48 run-to-pass ratio. In fact, A&M ran the football 38 times last week at Vanderbilt.

• Texas A&M is allowing 202.5 rushing yards per game (13th in SEC) while LSU is averaging 246.1 yards per contest (1st in SEC). On the flip side, A&M averages 259.6 passing yards per game (4th in SEC) while LSU allows 216 passing yards per contest (10th in SEC). Defensively, A&M has allowed 15 rushing TDs but only eight passing TDs. So the key matchups are LSU’s run offense vs A&M’s run defense and A&M’s passing offense vs. LSU’s passing defense.

• While the red zone score % is similar (84% for LSU vs 80% for A&M), LSU has scored TDs on 66% of its red zone possessions compared to just 55% for A&M. This is part of the reason A&M has kicked so many field goals (22/29 – 76%). Limiting A&M to field goals will likely be a key to this game.

• Texas A&M is averaging more sacks per game (2.9) than LSU (2.4) but is also allowing more sacks per game (2.4) than the Tigers (1.6). Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall lead the defensive line with a combined 17.5 sacks and 29.5 tackles for loss. It will be critical for LSU’s offensive line to protect Brandon Harris and limit A&M’s DL from creating negative plays. 

• Neither team is particularly good at kick returns (18 for LSU vs 20.5 for A&M) but A&M averages 19.7 yards per punt return whereas defensively, LSU allows 18.9 yards per punt return. Both teams struggle with penalty yards with 49.5 per game for A&M vs 63.3 per game for LSU. While LSU had 95 costly yards in penalties last week’s loss to Ole Miss, A&M was able to overcome their 70 yards in penalties in last week’s shutout win vs Vanderbilt.

Now turning to men’s basketball… LSU suffered its second straight loss in less than 24 hours, falling 83-72 to NC State in overtime last night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. After falling behind early in the second half, the Tigers fought back to a 63-58 lead with under two minutes remaining before a 7-2 run sent the game to overtime. There, Ben Simmons fouled out, and LSU couldn’t stop NC State’s inside game. Simmons, Tim Quarterman, Josh Gray and Antonio Blakeney struggled from the field, shooting a combined 14-54 (25.9%). LSU’s offense was unable to score consistently in the half court, oftentimes settling for contested outside jump shots. LSU’s defense was much better than against Marquette as the Tigers held NC State to just 39.7% (27-68), but the Tigers gave up 16 offensive rebounds (11 in the second half and overtime), were out-rebounded 54-42 and committed 23 fouls, which resulted in the Wolfpack shooting 23-29 from the free throw line. On the flip side, LSU’s lack of aggression resulted in only 11 NC State fouls, with the Tigers making only five of 10 free throw attempts. 

Tim Quarterman led all scorers with 19 points (7-20 from the field) and grabbed eight rebounds, but Simmons certainly had quite an impact in the game with 16 rebounds, 10 assists, three steals and three blocks to go along with four points. I never thought I’d say Simmons was six points away from a triple double, but that’s what happened last night as he shot the ball just six times, which is incomprehensible to me for a man of his talent. Another interesting bit on Simmons is that he is the only D-1 player listed at 6’10” or taller with 10 assists and 0 turnovers in a game in the last 20 seasons.

Brandon Sampson was the most efficient offensive player as he scored 18 points on 7-12 FG shooting, and Blakeney added 11 but shot just 4-17 from the field. Just as I mentioned yesterday, I think the additions of Craig Victor and Keith Hornsby will help the team both defensively and offensively, but ultimately, this team must improve in rebounding (especially preventing so many second chance points) and the offense must attack the rim and not settle for so many contested outside shots.

Closing tidbits:

LSU suffered its second football de-commitment in as many days as 2017 ATH Jacoby Stevens (6-2, 190, Murfreesboro, Tennessee) decommitted yesterday, citing the uncertainty of Les Miles’ future as a factor. Unfortunately, the longer it takes for the administration to clear up the uncertainty, the more of this kind of thing we will see.

I learned last night that wide receiver Travin Dural will miss the remainder of the football season after suffering a torn hamstring in his right leg in last week’s game against Ole Miss when he leaped for a ball in the end zone and took a huge hit. Dural is scheduled to have surgery this week and I know I speak for all of you when I wish him a full and speedy recovery.

• Since this is the season for giving thanks, I would be remiss if I’d didn’t recognize a couple of friends who’ve been helping out with this site. Thanks to Mark Towery for his help with today’s report. He’s the one who broke down the stats and recapped the basketball game so that I could spend time with my brother who drove in from Texas for the Thanksgiving holidays. I also want to extend my gratitude to Jake Martin who has been helping with the weekly unit breakdowns among other things. It’s good to have help, especially at this time of the year. 

• Please note that I’ve updated out ticket exchange with several new listings.

That’s it for today folks. Now it’s time for me to walk out to the garden and pick a big mess of turnips and mustard greens to prepare for tomorrow’s feast, which by the way I’m preparing for 30+ family members. (Wish me luck!) Have a great day, Tiger Fans, and make the most of this holiday time. 


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11/24/15 5:35 am CST

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

Lots to get to in today’s report, but I want to start with a comment on what went down yesterday with the Les Miles press conference. Regardless of how you feel about whether Miles should be retained or fired, I hope you agree that he has has always represented LSU with respect and class. As I was watching yesterday’s presser, and the preceding reports by ESPN’s Joe Schad, I couldn’t help but think that Miles deserved better than to be put into the awkward situation of having to face the media and address questions for which he had no answer. Honestly, I expected more from the administration. If Athletic Director Joe Alleva didn't want to give a vote of confidence to Miles or make an announcement about his future, the press conference should have been cancelled, or preempted with a statement that this was not the time to talk about coaching changes. To me, the way it went down was just flat out wrong. Yet, in the midst of the awkward situation he was thrown into, Miles answered what he could, kept positive and demonstrated great poise. Below is a brief recap of what was said, and here is the full transcript as provided by LSU. 

• Miles opened with the following statement: “I can tell you that I don't know anything other than let's go to work; let's rally the troops; let's enjoy the men that I've hired and the young men that I've recruited. Let's coach them hard and go away with victory.”

• Asked if he had heard the reports of him already having been fired or being fired at the end of the week, Miles said, “They had me in a job not long ago either, as I recall, and on a plane that I was not on, so…”

• Asked if he was hurt or upset with the news that was leaked last week, Miles made a reference to Kirk Herbstreit saying, “There was a tremendously reputable national sportscaster who was the source of the information that was completely erroneous nine years ago. Okay?”

• Miles implied there will be a time to talk about his job situation, but not while he’s coaching. His exact words were, “So I'm going to go onto work. I think the question is valid. I think you're exactly -- you know, at some point in time, you know, there is a me in this. Not while I'm coaching.”

• Later Miles said, “If someone is asking me if I'm coaching for my job, I think I've done that for 11 years.”

• Asked if he was considering retiring, Miles said he is not.

Now, I know that many of you reading this feel like it’s time for LSU and Les Miles to part ways, and I respect your opinion. I ask that you respect mine as well. My personal take is this: As I’ve stated many times, I recognize that LSU football has been on a decline, and I recognize that LSU has been out-coached in three straight losses. Changes are needed. But if I had to make the call today, I would give Les Miles another year to right the ship. With so much talent returning including a junior quarterback and the best running back in the nation, and with the possibility of landing another exceptional recruiting class, I don’t see this as the time to spend $15 million (regardless of where it comes from) to send Miles packing. I know that my inbox will blow up with messages from several of you feel very strongly that I’m wrong, but that is my stance. Based on what I’ve heard, it doesn’t appear that I’ll get my wish. Several sources tell me the wheels have been in motion for some time and that a head coaching change is almost inevitable. I just hope and pray that with so much at stake the administration gets it right and handles whatever changes are to come with respect and gratitude for a man who has given LSU football 11 of its best years.

With all the uncertainty surrounding the LSU program, I’m disappointed but not surprised to announce that 4-star quarterback Feliepe Franks decommitted from LSU last night. Franks announced his decommitment on Twitter, saying, “For about a month now I have been talking with LSU about decommitting. I have given this process a lot of thought and feel that it is best for me to make my decommitment public. I want to thank the LSU coaches, staff and the amazing fans for all their support.” All I have to say about that is if LSU doesn’t get it right with the the upcoming coaching change(s), we could see more of these. 

Sorry to only have bad news to report today, but there’s more. According to syracuse.com, LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron has said that he would be very interested in the head coaching job at Syracuse, now that Scott Shafer will be dismissed at the end of the season. I don’t think Coach O would leave LSU for any lateral position, but it’s been known for a while that he would really like to return to being a head coach.

Now for the basketball news… the LSU men’s team lost its first game of the season last night with an 81-80 loss to Marquette. After trailing 10-0 and 27-18, LSU went on a 16-7 run to tie it up before Marquette scored on a layup to lead 36-34 at the break. Marquette started hot in the second half and seemed to answer every one of LSU's runs. Down 72-63, the Tigers fought back to take their only lead of the contest, 80-79, with under a minute, but the Golden Eagles hit two free throws, and Jalyn Patterson missed a three-pointer as time expired. Ben Simmons is an exceptional and unselfish player, but I'd say he was way too unselfish on the final possession, as he passed up two shot opportunities in the last ten seconds of the contest.

It's early in the season, and this team is certainly young with three freshmen starting; however, it is imperative that LSU improve its rebounding (out-rebounded 45-38 last night) and front court defense. The guards struggled to stop the Golden Eagles' dribble penetration, which led to way too many easy baskets. Marquette was able to shoot 52.6% from the field, and it's tough to win games when you allow that kind of percentage. Although Elbert Robinson did start, he did not appear to be 100% as he failed to score or grab a rebound. Having him back to 100% along with forward Craig Victor becoming eligible December 13 will be critical for the front court defense. Keith Hornsby is also expected to return before SEC play in January. One huge positive was that the Tigers' full-court defense helped force 22 turnovers, which was one of the keys to keeping them in the contest.

Simmons led LSU with 21 points, 20 rebounds and seven assists while Tim Quarterman added 20 points, six rebounds and four assists. Antonio Blakeney and Brandon Sampson chipped in 14 and 10 points, respectively, and Josh Gray (five points, two steals) seemed to spark the comeback with his full-court pressure to help LSU get back in the game.

LSU’s men return to action today at 4:30 p.m. to play the loser of Arizona State and NC State. The game will be televised on ESPNU and can be heard on 98.1 FM in the Baton Rouge area.

The LSU women’s team also suffered a loss last night as they fell 67-63. For more on that game, please see this recap on LSUSports.net.

I’ll end on this personal tidbit that kind of sums up what a difficult day yesterday was. Last night I was walking to my home office to work on this update carrying a gallon of paint to put away. Well, I dropped it and white paint spilled all over my hardwood floor, blue wall, and black desk. It was that kind of day. Here’s hoping today is much better.


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