LSU Fires Les Miles, Begin Search for New Coach
On Sunday, LSU did something most people expected them to do, which was the firing of head coach Les Miles. The timing however, was unexpected. College football spreads had the Tigers defeating Auburn on Saturday, and LSU appeared to have covered the spread with a last second touchdown against Auburn. However, the touchdown was overturned because time ran out before LSU hiked the ball, giving Auburn the win.
After the game, there was speculation that LSU would part ways with Miles after this season because the team hasn’t lived up to expectations over the past five seasons, while rivals Alabama has added a few more championships to their collection.
However, the powers to be at LSU, who tried to fire Miles after last season but decided to give him another year, decided not to wait until the end of the year to fire their coach. According to college football insiders, the move was done to get a jump start on other schools in the coaching search.
Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele, who was LSU’s defensive coordinator last season, is one of the people that doesn’t agree with LSU’s decision to part with Miles. Steele said his thoughts and prayers were with Miles and his family, whom he said were good to him when he was at LSU. Despite not agreeing with LSU’s decision, Steele said he understood it from a business standpoint.
Miles was hired in 2005 by the Tigers after Nick Saban led the team to a BCS championship. In 2007, Miles led the team to another BCS championship, and was 114-34 as the head coach of the Tigers, making him the second-winningest coach in school history.
The popular coach had trouble developing quarterbacks over the past few years, which led to some disappointing losses and eventually led to him losing the support of the team’s administration, who feel they should be national title contenders every year.
LSU named defensive line coach Ed Orgeron as their interim coach, and according to Steele, while he isn’t happy about the circumstances that led to him being named interim coach, he is a good coach that will win some games for the team this year.
However, even if Orgeron goes undefeated for the rest of the season, he won’t be given a chance to become the team’s full-time coach because the athletic department is going after a few big name coaches after the season is over.
Some of the names that are expected to be in the mix for the LSU job after the season are Louisville coach Bobby Petrino, who had success as the coach of Arkansas before being forced out due to an extramarital affair he had with one of his aides.
Petrino has done a great job at Louisville and is expected to be highly sought after when the season concludes.
Tom Herman, the head coach of the Houston Cougars is another coach that is expected to be in high demand after the season, and someone the Tigers will likely go after. When the news of Miles firing broke, Herman was asked if he had been contacted by LSU, which he denied. Herman added that he won’t discuss other openings until the season is over.