Murf Baldwin

Baldwin: Orgeron's success may have been fool's gold all along

After losing to Florida, the loss by LSU exposed what Ed Orgeron's interim coaching stint might have been all along.

While this may come across a bit crass, which, for me, is par for the course, I'm almost glad LSU lost to Florida -- at least in the fashion it did -- because, perhaps, sanity may have been restored.

As it pertains to the prospects of LSU's coaching search, to borrow a phrase from Zoolander, "I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!"

Interim head coach Ed Orgeron has done a pretty good job, no doubt, but I wholeheartedly believe he didn't do anything ousted HC Les Miles wouldn't have done.

But it reminds me of my dating life, post the worst girlfriend I've ever had, as the subsequent woman I dated could do no wrong despite her obvious flaws, too. (Not saying I'm perfect, but I'm also not saying I'm not.) No matter what she did, I compared it, positively, to the previous woman -- almost to the point of it being cartoonish.

If Woman B did something thoughtful, I thought it was the greatest thing in the world even though, ultimately, she was only doing it to benefit herself, as well.

Comparing it to LSU, fellow media and fans, alike, were painting a reckless narrative that Coach O had changed the culture, motivated the team to the point of being a Cajun Tony Robbins and even evolved the offense making it more modern than what Miles had done.

The reality is: Those people were reaching like a dehydrated man in the desert in front of a cactus; let's take the situation into totality.

Road defeats of 16-14 and 18-13 to Wisconsin (neutral site, really?) and Auburn, respectively, don't look bad considering those teams are now 9-2 and 8-3. And while beating a couple of teams in Ole Miss and Arkansas, as Coach O has done, is awesome, this is undoubtedly a down year for both -- especially on the defensive side of the ball.

And, quite frankly, everyone beats up on the 3-8 Missouri.

This left Alabama and Florida as the two best tests on the schedule; two teams with two of the best defenses in the land (outside of LSU, of course). While LSU's defense held up to its end of the bargain, against Bama, the offense looked even more inept than we saw under Miles in the 10-0 loss, at home.

And in a home game where LSU's brass, players and fans called the Gators "scared," the offense, once again, wet the bed in what has to be the most embarrassing loss of the season considering the given circumstances.

Now don't me wrong; Coach O is an excellent person to have on any staff, as he understands how to recruit and motivate. But when I hear people saying how LSU shouldn't be interested in Florida State's HC, the national title-winning Jimbo Fisher, it makes me want to gag myself with a spoon -- for lack of a better expression.

I mean, this is freaking LSU; there should only be a few coaches in the country not interested in the job. The Tigers should be able to reel in a proven HC with a background of recruiting and developing quarterbacks and incorporating multiple offensive schemes in an infrastructure still rooted in pro-style concepts.

And is there anyone more fitting of that description than Fisher?

Do you know what that man has done even with average quarterbacks like E.J. Manuel and Christian Ponder? And let's not forget that all of his teams closely resemble LSU's in talent on both sides of the ball.

Offensively speaking, he's a genius that has maximized the potential of many of his teams and judging him, shortsightedly, on this season would be the type of mistakes foolish programs make. (And FSU is still 8-3 with razor-thin losses of 37-35 and 37-34 to North Carolina and Clemson, respectively.)

And even if it's not Jimbo, LSU shouldn't be so quick to hop on the first thing smoking without properly doing its due-diligence to make sure it doesn't hit the skids like most programs do when they replace someone who has been successful for a long period of time.

Marrying the first girl you date after your worst is risky business. (Not saying Miles is anything of the sort)

If that involves hiring Coach O, after you've exhausted all possibilities, I can dig that. But it won't be because he magically turned the Tigers into some type of 10 personnel-based Air-Raid attack equipped with pass tags on the back of run calls because that's not true.

Most of Orgeron's success has come off the strength of doing exactly what Miles did over the years: ground and pound.

Sorry, Tigers faithful, the 16-10 loss to the Gators revealed you haven't found your long-term wife, as of yet.

Here's hoping LSU takes its time and makes the best possible decision it can.


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