9/30/15 12:00 am CST
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Good morning, Tiger Fans,
After the emotional rush of Saturday night’s strange turn of events which ended with Les Miles keeping his job after a 19-7 win against Texas A&M, today I’m left with the sobering question, “Now what?” To steal a phrase from Les Miles himself, “I’ve gotta be honest with you.” As much as I’d like to say otherwise, the situation at LSU is not all roses now that Les Miles’ job is secure for the time being. To me, it’s clear that Alleva and a large faction of big boosters wanted Les Miles out, but for several reasons their plan did not materialize, and that leaves Coach Les Miles in a precarious position. If all of the same decision makers are in play next year and the Tigers begin to falter with an early season loss, it’s not a stretch to think that Miles’ job security could once again be in the media spotlight, and my fear is that this could impact recruiting in a big way. It also seems obvious that some staff changes are needed now, and that the team desperately needs to add a quarterback or two to this year’s recruiting class which currently contains none. My brief thoughts on these topics and others can be found in today’s Mail Call, linked below.
DandyDon.com Mail Call - Post Texas A&M Edition
After concluding the regular season with an 8-3 record, the Tigers came in at No. 23 in both of the major polls this week. Now that we’re at this point, it’s interesting to note that if the McNeese State game would have been played, LSU would likely be sitting at 9-3. I call that “interesting” because before the season started, I conducted a poll asking you to predict LSU’s final regular season record, and the largest vote-getter was 9-3 (33.27%).
Please don’t misinterpret the last two sentences of the previous paragraph as me saying that I’m satisfied with LSU’s record this year – I am not. LSU’s talent-laden offense clearly underachieved (ending 54th in the nation in total offense, 111th in passing offense and 10th in rushing offense), and LSU’s defense took a step in the opposite direction (going from 9th in the nation in total defense in 2014 to 25th in 2015, and dropping from 3rd in passing defense to 45th.) I have to say though that I was very impressed with what I saw from the defense in Saturday’s game and find that encouraging. As for special teams, LSU ended the season 127th out of 128 teams in opponent punt return average, 73rd in opponent kick return average, 72nd in punting and 49th in field goals. Obviously, that won’t cut it.
With that said, I’m confident that with the appropriate staff changes and a strong finish to this recruiting class, which is currently ranked No. 2 in the nation, 2016 could be a very exciting season for this young but very talented Tiger team. And let’s not forget that there’s still a bowl game to be played this year. According to a report from ESPN 104.5 in Baton Rouge, representatives from the Citrus Bowl are considering a Michigan-LSU matchup in their annual New Year’s Day bowl game in Orlando, Florida. Imagine what a storyline that would be!
Before going any further, I’d like to call your attention to something that I’m sure you’ve already noticed....
This is the first Monday after Thanksgiving, and that means it’s time for the start of our annual DandyDon.com fundraiser. I ask that you please read this important message and consider pledging your support. For nearly 19 years, DandyDon.com has been dishing out a daily dose of Tiger News, and I look forward to continuing the site for many years, but I can only do so with your help. Believe me, soliciting your support is not a lot of fun, but I believe it’s the best business model for this site and the right thing to do. Back when my late father (Dandy Don Long) and I started this site, we decided to keep it free for our military men and women, college and high school students, elderly people living on social security, and for all those who simply cannot afford subscription fees. In order for that approach to work, I need those of you who can afford to do so to please make a donation. Thanks in advance for your consideration.
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In basketball, the LSU men’s team (3-2) is on the road in Charleston, South Carolina tonight to play against the Charleston Cougars (3-2). The Tigers are looking to snap a two-game losing skid after losing to Marquette (81-80) and NC State (83-72 in overtime) last week at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. This season, Charleston has beaten South Carolina State (74-54), Navy (72-58) and Western Carolina (57-56) and has lost to Davidson (82-81) and Coastal Carolina (67-61). Tipoff is at 6 p.m. tonight and can be heard on 98.1 FM in the Baton Rouge area. There is no television broadcast scheduled for the game, but live stats will be available through LSUsports.net. Look for a full recap on the game in tomorrow's report.
That’s it for today, folks. Have a great day!