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2007 BCS Champions

2007 BCS
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2003 BCS National Champions

2003 BCS
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1958 National Champions

1958
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NCAA Baseball Championships:

1991
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12/10/18 5:30 am CST

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Good morning, Tiger Fans,

First, it was great hearing from many of you about yesterday’s report and about things to include in this year’s series of 18 Defining Moments in LSU Sports. We’ll kickoff that series later in the week, but today it’s time to address a few questions I’ve been asked lately in our “Mini-Mail Call.” After that, we’ll recap a dominating win in men’s basketball. Here we go…

DANDYDON.COM MINI MAIL CALL - DEC. 10 EDITION

From Bryan: Alabama is now up to 24 commitments for this year’s recruiting class. Question, I read somewhere that they will over-sign this year, around 28 or 29, to be exact. How is this possible, for didn't the NCAA pass a rule a few years ago, that set and limited a yearly hard cap of 25 total, or maximum every year? Please clarify me on this rule and situation, that is, if you happen to know. Later. 

My Response: This is a question I’ve been asked a lot lately. It’s one I addressed last year when the new signing rule went into effect, but this is an excellent time for a refresher. There’s been a lot of confusion from the beginning about what the rule change met, so last year we at DandyDon reached out to LSU’s compliance department and put together this Q&A which explains it all. Here’s how Blair Napolitano, LSU's Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance, explained it: “A school can sign more than 25 recruits provided it did not use all 25 signing slots in the previous signing class. In order to be counted in the previous signing class, the signee has to enroll at mid-term and replace a current student-athlete that graduated in December or the previous academic year. There is a change in the rules. Athletes who sign in a particular class are locked into that signing class whether or not they enroll in that fall. Schools can no longer count gray shirts or players placed in junior colleges in future signing classes once they sign the letter of intent with a particular group.”  So, in the case of Alabama, they did not sign their full allotment last year and have room to back-count. LSU signed 23 during the usual signing period but then filled its two remaining spots with the transfers of QB Joe Burrow and CB Terrance Alexander.

From Rick: Who of our commitments will sign early? Who will enroll early? Nuff said.

My Response: Good question, Rick. Honestly, I’m not 100% sure, but I’ll tell you what I’ve heard. Recent reports indicate that cornerback Maurice Hampton (the dual sport football/baseball guy) hasn’t yet said whether he will sign in the early period. It’s also unclear whether JUCO DB Dreshun Miller will sign with LSU. As far as I know, the 18 other commits are expected to sign on Dec. 19. As for who is set to enroll early, I know that CB Derek Stingley and RB John Emery are, and I think Miller would too if he signs, but I can’t think of any others. With Stingley and Emery poised to be early impact players at key positions of need, it’s great that they will be able to take part in spring practice. 

From Chuck: Do you expect a QB coach to be hired? Call me crazy but consider this. With Fisher next door, when recruiting QBs, all Fisher needs to do is ask a recruit, who was the last QB developed at LSU? Followed by who developed that QB. We all know it was Fisher. I recall there was a QB coach the staff wanted to hire last season I can’t recall his name. 

My Response: The person you’re thinking of is ex-NFL QB Sean Salisbury. According to reports like this one by The Advocate, Coach Ed Orgeron and Offensive Coordinator Steve Ensminger had serious talks with him about becoming an offensive analyst for the Tigers this season. Salisbury later tweeted, “Unfortunately, because I privately train QBs who are being recruited, the compliance office had to say no for the 2018 season.”  The fact that he specified “for the 2018 season” makes me wonder if things may be different now, though I haven’t heard one way or the other. 

Turning to the hardwood, the LSU men’s basketball team got back on a winning track and improved to 7-2 on the season with a dominating 91-50 win over Incarnate Word. Here’s a quick word on how it played out:

LSU jumped out to a 7-0 lead and never trailed in the game, but had trouble pulling away early in the contest due to multiple turnovers by Waters and fouls that allowed UIW to hang around. In fact, the Cardinals pulled to within one point, 24-23, before LSU went on a strong 27-6 run in the final 7:32 to take a 51-29 halftime lead into the locker room. With Waters on the bench with two fouls, Skyler Mays and Ja'Vonte Smart really stepped up and spurred the rally with a combined 17 points during a 2:46 span. The second half was all LSU as the Tigers outscored the Cardinals 40-21 and held them scoreless during a stretch of almost eight minutes. And that was with Waters on the bench and walk-ons Will Reese and Marshall Graves on the court much of the half. 

Naz Reid led the Tigers in scoring with 16 points, while also recording seven rebounds and three assists. Smart also scored 16 points and had three rebounds and five assists. With Emmitt Williams out due to a minor injury, Kavell Bigby-Williams saw increased playing time and made the most of it, recording a double-double with ten rebounds and 14 points. Mays led the Tigers in assists with six, while also scoring 13 points and recording five rebounds. It was great to see such a balanced attack on a day when Tremont Waters was not at his best. Waters ended with nine points, four fouls, and four turnovers.  

LSU returns to action for a much tougher test at Houston this Wednesday before traveling to Las Vegas for a neutral-site game against St. Mary’s. The Tigers won’t be back at home in the PMAC until they face No. 25 Furman on Friday, Dec. 21. If they take care of business in those next three games and against UL-M the following week, the Tigers should be back in the top-25 before the start of SEC play on January 8 versus Alabama. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. 

Here are video highlights and the complete box score from yesterday’s win. 

Closing Tidbits: 

• Please note that I’ll be updating our Ticket Exchange page later today, so if you have LSU bowl tickets to sell, or any LSU tickets for that matter, please send me your info for posting.

• Here’s a reminder that we are in the process of building our list of the top 100+ Louisiana prospects for 2020 and welcome your input. If there’s a Division 1 prospect from Louisiana that you would like to suggest for the list, please let us know. We would especially like to hear from LA high school football coaches who have top prospects on their teams. Stats and video links are encouraged and appreciated.

• Lastly, today starts the third week of our annual fundraiser. To those of you who have already shown your appreciation for the work that goes into producing a daily site like this one, my family and I offer our most sincere thanks. If you haven’t yet done so, please take a moment to read this important message and consider donating today.





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12/10/18 5:30 am CST

DandyDon.com needs your help! Please read this important message and pledge your support!

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

First, it was great hearing from many of you about yesterday’s report and about things to include in this year’s series of 18 Defining Moments in LSU Sports. We’ll kickoff that series later in the week, but today it’s time to address a few questions I’ve been asked lately in our “Mini-Mail Call.” After that, we’ll recap a dominating win in men’s basketball. Here we go…

DANDYDON.COM MINI MAIL CALL - DEC. 10 EDITION

From Bryan: Alabama is now up to 24 commitments for this year’s recruiting class. Question, I read somewhere that they will over-sign this year, around 28 or 29, to be exact. How is this possible, for didn't the NCAA pass a rule a few years ago, that set and limited a yearly hard cap of 25 total, or maximum every year? Please clarify me on this rule and situation, that is, if you happen to know. Later. 

My Response: This is a question I’ve been asked a lot lately. It’s one I addressed last year when the new signing rule went into effect, but this is an excellent time for a refresher. There’s been a lot of confusion from the beginning about what the rule change met, so last year we at DandyDon reached out to LSU’s compliance department and put together this Q&A which explains it all. Here’s how Blair Napolitano, LSU's Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance, explained it: “A school can sign more than 25 recruits provided it did not use all 25 signing slots in the previous signing class. In order to be counted in the previous signing class, the signee has to enroll at mid-term and replace a current student-athlete that graduated in December or the previous academic year. There is a change in the rules. Athletes who sign in a particular class are locked into that signing class whether or not they enroll in that fall. Schools can no longer count gray shirts or players placed in junior colleges in future signing classes once they sign the letter of intent with a particular group.”  So, in the case of Alabama, they did not sign their full allotment last year and have room to back-count. LSU signed 23 during the usual signing period but then filled its two remaining spots with the transfers of QB Joe Burrow and CB Terrance Alexander.

From Rick: Who of our commitments will sign early? Who will enroll early? Nuff said.

My Response: Good question, Rick. Honestly, I’m not 100% sure, but I’ll tell you what I’ve heard. Recent reports indicate that cornerback Maurice Hampton (the dual sport football/baseball guy) hasn’t yet said whether he will sign in the early period. It’s also unclear whether JUCO DB Dreshun Miller will sign with LSU. As far as I know, the 18 other commits are expected to sign on Dec. 19. As for who is set to enroll early, I know that CB Derek Stingley and RB John Emery are, and I think Miller would too if he signs, but I can’t think of any others. With Stingley and Emery poised to be early impact players at key positions of need, it’s great that they will be able to take part in spring practice. 

From Chuck: Do you expect a QB coach to be hired? Call me crazy but consider this. With Fisher next door, when recruiting QBs, all Fisher needs to do is ask a recruit, who was the last QB developed at LSU? Followed by who developed that QB. We all know it was Fisher. I recall there was a QB coach the staff wanted to hire last season I can’t recall his name. 

My Response: The person you’re thinking of is ex-NFL QB Sean Salisbury. According to reports like this one by The Advocate, Coach Ed Orgeron and Offensive Coordinator Steve Ensminger had serious talks with him about becoming an offensive analyst for the Tigers this season. Salisbury later tweeted, “Unfortunately, because I privately train QBs who are being recruited, the compliance office had to say no for the 2018 season.”  The fact that he specified “for the 2018 season” makes me wonder if things may be different now, though I haven’t heard one way or the other. 

Turning to the hardwood, the LSU men’s basketball team got back on a winning track and improved to 7-2 on the season with a dominating 91-50 win over Incarnate Word. Here’s a quick word on how it played out:

LSU jumped out to a 7-0 lead and never trailed in the game, but had trouble pulling away early in the contest due to multiple turnovers by Waters and fouls that allowed UIW to hang around. In fact, the Cardinals pulled to within one point, 24-23, before LSU went on a strong 27-6 run in the final 7:32 to take a 51-29 halftime lead into the locker room. With Waters on the bench with two fouls, Skyler Mays and Ja'Vonte Smart really stepped up and spurred the rally with a combined 17 points during a 2:46 span. The second half was all LSU as the Tigers outscored the Cardinals 40-21 and held them scoreless during a stretch of almost eight minutes. And that was with Waters on the bench and walk-ons Will Reese and Marshall Graves on the court much of the half. 

Naz Reid led the Tigers in scoring with 16 points, while also recording seven rebounds and three assists. Smart also scored 16 points and had three rebounds and five assists. With Emmitt Williams out due to a minor injury, Kavell Bigby-Williams saw increased playing time and made the most of it, recording a double-double with ten rebounds and 14 points. Mays led the Tigers in assists with six, while also scoring 13 points and recording five rebounds. It was great to see such a balanced attack on a day when Tremont Waters was not at his best. Waters ended with nine points, four fouls, and four turnovers.  

LSU returns to action for a much tougher test at Houston this Wednesday before traveling to Las Vegas for a neutral-site game against St. Mary’s. The Tigers won’t be back at home in the PMAC until they face No. 25 Furman on Friday, Dec. 21. If they take care of business in those next three games and against UL-M the following week, the Tigers should be back in the top-25 before the start of SEC play on January 8 versus Alabama. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. 

Here are video highlights and the complete box score from yesterday’s win. 

Closing Tidbits: 

• Please note that I’ll be updating our Ticket Exchange page later today, so if you have LSU bowl tickets to sell, or any LSU tickets for that matter, please send me your info for posting.

• Here’s a reminder that we are in the process of building our list of the top 100+ Louisiana prospects for 2020 and welcome your input. If there’s a Division 1 prospect from Louisiana that you would like to suggest for the list, please let us know. We would especially like to hear from LA high school football coaches who have top prospects on their teams. Stats and video links are encouraged and appreciated.

• Lastly, today starts the third week of our annual fundraiser. To those of you who have already shown your appreciation for the work that goes into producing a daily site like this one, my family and I offer our most sincere thanks. If you haven’t yet done so, please take a moment to read this important message and consider donating today.

12/9/18 5:50 am CST

Please read this important message and show your support for DandyDon.com.

Good morning, Tiger Fans,

With conference championships and bowl selections long decided, and with no LSU game to recap today, things are remarkably slow on the LSU news front. That makes this as good a time as any to begin looking back on the year that was. In a few days, we’ll start our annual series looking back at the 2018’s 18 defining moments in LSU sports. We think we’ve got our selections pretty much figured out, but we welcome your suggestions in case we overlooked anything. Here’s what we did last year for 2017’s Defining Moments if you want an example of what’s to come or just want to reminisce.

As the publisher of this daily site, I’m able to easily look back through my archives for content ideas. Well, yesterday I did that and saw that last year at this time, we wrote a four-part series outlining eight things LSU needed to do to be a championship contender this year. Today we’ll review how LSU did with those eight things.

The first thing we wrote about was replacing skill position losses. LSU replaced its top five skill players, including running backs Derrius Guice and Darrel Williams, wide receivers D.J. Chark and Russell Gage, and quarterback Danny Etling. Looking back, I think it’s easy to see that we underestimated how hard it would be to replace those guys. Aside from at quarterback play, LSU came up short. The good news is that all of LSU’s top skill players from 2018 except for Nick Brossette return as veterans next year, plus the Tigers bring in a couple of outstanding running backs.

No. 2 on our list was improving quarterback play, and LSU succeeded there. Joe Burrow’s numbers might not look significantly better that Danny Etling’s, but he was clearly a difference-maker. Not to knock Etling in the least bit, but Burrow’s intangibles such as poise and football I.Q. really elevated his play beyond his stat line. And those stats, unimpressive as they were, would have been much more impressive with better protection and fewer drops.

Next, we said the left tackle position needed stability and additional depth. Well, the stability thing took a while to fall into place due to a shake up in the lineup caused by early injuries and Ed Ingram’s suspension. Through the first five games, LSU started four different players at left tackle. Eventually, LSU settled onSaahdiq Charles for the final seven contests, but there wasn’t as much depth behind him as expected since Badara Traore, the No. 1 JUCO OT in the country, didn’t have the immediate success we expected. Next year, all of LSU’s current tackles will be back, and the one to watch will be redshirt freshman Dare Rosenthal who made the move to offense after signing as a D-lineman.

We also mentioned that the D-line rotation needed some rebuilding after losing fifth-year seniors Christian LaCouture, Greg Gilmore and Frank Herron. Rashard Lawrence, Ed Alexander, Breiden Fehoko, Glen Logan, Neil Farrell, and Tyler Shelvin did an admirable job, though there was still a dropdown in defending the run. Fortunately, most of those guys should be back next year, though we’ll be anxiously awaiting word on whether Lawrence and Alexander return. If they do, LSU’s D-line won’t need much rebuilding at all next year and should be rock solid, especially if Shelvin can get his weight down and keep it there. Still, LSU desperately needs to add another D-lineman or two in this year’s recruiting class to avoid finding itself in a precarious position in the near future.

The sixth thing we wrote about was making special teams special again and I think we can all agree that LSU did just that. With the hiring of Greg McMahon as the full-time special teams coordinator and the additions of  kickers Cole Tracy and Avery Atkins, LSU’s special teams were light years ahead of where they were the season before. The only “miss” in this regard was in the return game. Still, a big improvement overall.   

Next, we talked about keeping some juniors in the fold. LSU ended up losing Donté Jackson, Derrius Guice, Arden Key, and Will Clapp to the draft. Kevin Toliver and Toby Weathersby also left early but were not drafted and later settled on free-agent deals. Man would it have been great to have those two guys this year. 

The final two things were wrote about were Coach O and the staff taking the next step, and navigating a brutal schedule. From a staffing point, Coach O succeeded big-time in keeping Dave Aranda on board, and that’s likely something he’ll have to contend with again. If not this year, then soon. He also brought in McMahon as special teams coordinator, replaced Jeff Grimes with new O-line coach James Cregg, brought in safeties coach Bill Busch, and fired offensive coordinator Matt Canada. With LSU’s offense finishing marginally better this year in scoring (31.8 ppg vs. 27.2 ppg) and passing yards (205.4 ypg vs 203.5 ypg), but worse in total yards (389.3 ppg vs 411 ppg), the jury is still out about whether Ensminger is the long-term solution. Coach Cregg still has a bit to prove as O-line coach, but I think it’s safe to say that Busch and McMahon have been a smashing success. And as for navigating a brutal schedule, LSU certainly did that as well as anyone could have expected, far exceeding the national projections and setting itself up for its first 10-win season since finishing the 2013 season with a win over Iowa in the Outback Bowl.

I hope you enjoyed that brief look back. In a subsequent report, we’ll talk about what LSU needs to do to be a contender in 2019.

Turning to hoops, the LSU men’s basketball team is returning to action today after a long break for final exams. LSU’s men team (6-2) will look to get back on a winning track and extend its home win streak when it hosts Incarnate Word (5-5) today at 1 p.m. CT at the PMAC. The game will be televised by the SEC Network, but fans can attend the game for free by bringing a new, unwrapped toy for distribution by the Toys for Tots campaign to the upper concourse ticket windows beginning at 11:30 a.m. Today’s game is the start of a seven day stretch which includes three games, two of which are on the road. The Tigers will travel to Houston on Wednesday and will face Saint Mary’s next Saturday in a neutral site game in Las Vegas. Look for our full recap of today’s game in tomorrow’s report.

In high school football news, three state champions were crowned last night in the conclusion of the LHSAA playoffs. John Curtis defeated Catholic-BR 49-7 to earn the Division I title. Then in a nail-biter, Edna Karr pulled off a three-peat by defeating Warren Easton 28-20 and earning its third consecutive state title. In the nightcap, Class 5A Zachary won it third state championship in four years with a 27-24 win over West Monroe. 

A real quick word on football recruiting before closing out: All I’ve heard about this weekend’s visits is that the two kids from Horn Lake – five-star LB Nakobe Dean and four-star cornerback Raydarious Jones – both made it in and brought lots of family along. That suggests to me that there is serious interest. Also, LSU continues to extended new offers for next year’s class. A trio of four-star prospects – cornerback Lorando Johnson (Lancaster, Texas), athlete Teriyon Cooper (Saint Louis, Mo.), and running back Mecose Todd (Villa Rica, Ga.) – all recently tweeted that they were thankful to receive LSU offers.

Lastly, if you have a question or comment you’d like us to consider for a mini-mail call tomorrow (it’ll probably shorter than usual since we’ll have a basketball game to recap), please let us know.

Folks, stop and think about it. Where else can you get an easily accessible all-in-one daily dose of news relevant to Tiger fans other than at DandyDon.com? If you appreciate what we bring to you every day, there’s no better way to keep the daily doses coming than by donating to our annual fundraiser. My family and I offer our sincere thanks to those of you who have already answered the call.

Have a great Sunday, Tiger Fans.



 

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