2/28/15 5:35 am CT
Good morning, Tiger Fans,
Well folks, there’s rarely a dull moment when it comes to LSU sporting news. In today’s report, we’ve got a lot to cover, starting with news that broke last night of former LSU coach John Chavis and LSU set to battle it out in the courtroom. Here we go…
According to multiple reports, John Chavis and LSU have filed lawsuits against one another over whether the former LSU defensive coordinator owes LSU a $400,000 buyout. The case hinges on when exactly Coach Chavis took the job as Defensive Coordinator with Texas A&M. According to The Advocate, Chavis’ deal with LSU calls for a buyout of $400,000 if the coach left LSU before Jan. 31, 2015. Chavis contends that he turned in a 30-day notice to terminate the contract on January 5, which presumably would put his last day as February 4. Chavis wasn’t officially announced as A&M’s defensive coordinator until February 13. According to reports by The Houston Chronicle, Chavis landed in College Station, Texas, and was seen exiting a private jet with A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin on New Year’s Day, and it’s apparent from many photos posted on Twitter that Chavis was recruiting for Texas A&M during the month of January. According to The Advocate’s report, Chavis is suing Texas A&M as well, contending that if in fact LSU is owed the $400,000, A&M should pay for it. Stay tuned, folks. This could get interesting.
Yesterday evening, LSU issued the following statement on the Chavis matter:
“Late Friday afternoon, amid an ongoing dialogue between LSU and former LSU football defensive coordinator John Chavis, LSU received notice that Chavis has sued LSU in Texas state court. The lawsuit, which was filed in Brazos County, Texas, concerns Chavis’ early termination of his employment contract with LSU.
“The state of Texas is not a proper venue to decide a contractual dispute between Louisiana State University and one of its former coaches, and LSU will pursue immediate dismissal of Chavis’ suit. LSU has also initiated a legal action against Chavis in Baton Rouge, Louisiana to recover the $400,000 buy-out owed to LSU by Chavis. LSU regrets that what is ordinarily a simple matter must be resolved in litigation, but it will vigorously defend the contractual and constitutional rights of the University.”
In baseball, LSU improved to 8-1 on the season with a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Princeton. The Tigers were out-hit 4-6, but were able to edge out the win with aggressive base-running and excellent pitching, especially from the bullpen.
Jared Poché got the start for the Tigers, lasted 6.2 innings, allowed two earned runs on six hits, and stuck out five. He also walked one and had a wild pitch. Alden Cartwright relieved Poché in the top of the seventh with two runners in scoring position and did a fine job of getting LSU out of a jam. Zac Person pitched a scoreless eighth inning and Jesse Stallings came in and earned his fifth save of the season by retiring Princeton in order with three strikeouts in the ninth.
LSU was led at the plate by Jake Fraley who went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Fraley got his second consecutive start because of Andrew Stevenson being out with a hamstring injury, and in both games he took advantage of the opportunity with impressive outings. In Thursday’s win, he had three hits including a game-winning two-RBI triple, and last night he had two stolen bases to go along with his hot hitting. Andrew Steveson is expected to return to action today and it will be interesting to see what that means for Fraley.
Here are the baseball game’s video highlights and here is the box score.
Because of anticipated rain in Baton Rouge later this weekend, the game that was originally scheduled to be played on Sunday has been moved to today as the second half of a doubleheader. The first game of the twin bill will start at 4 p.m. and the second game will follow approximately 45 minutes after the conclusion of the first game. Both games can be viewed online on SEC Network +, available at WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app. The games can also be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network.
In basketball news, LSU’s men return to action today with an important home contest against Ole Miss. The game tips-off at 1 p.m. and will be televised regionally on FSN including Fox Sports South and Fox Sports Southwest as well as the FoxSportsGo app. The game will also be available on the WatchESPN app outside the SEC footprint. Every game from here on out is important for the Tigers in terms of NCAA tournament selection and SEC tournament seeding. The Tigers enter the contest 20-8 and 9-6 in the SEC, while Ole Miss is 19-9 and 10-5. Ole Miss is currently tied with Texas A&M for third place, and this is particularly significant because the top-four teams in the conference standings receive a double bye in the SEC tournament. LSU and Georgia are currently tied for fifth place. When LSU and Ole Miss met earlier this season (January 14), LSU won 75-71 at Oxford. Both teams are playing better at this point in the season and today’s game should be a great one.
As for LSU’s football recruiting sanctions that I wrote about yesterday, here’s an article by Scott Rabalais of the Advocate that I think makes a few interesting points worth repeating. First, the rule is ridiculous. That’s clear to see. Second, while the sanctions seem unjust to me, they shouldn’t be terribly damaging. Loosing 21 evaluations days is not a huge deal as often all of the allotted days are not used anyway. Losing the ability to sign any prospects to FAAs the next two years does hurts more, but it does not mean, as some have understood it, that LSU cannot sign any early enrollees during that time. The only silver lining I can see in this whole deal is that maybe it will shed some light on the need to change the rule and help bring about the arrival of an early signing period in college football, which is something that’s been discussed a lot lately.
One more football-related tidbit: Here’s part 2 of 3 of Ronn Higgins’ Q&A with LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron on the topic of LSU quarterbacks.
Last but not least, a big congratulations to the No. 2 LSU gymnastics team for defeating No. 5 Alabama last night! With the win, the Tigers have gone undefeated in the SEC for the first time in school history!