Blog Entry

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

Posted on: January 20, 2011 10:38 am
Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The LSU offensive coordinator's position should be one of the most sought-after in college football: a steady supply of premium-grade home-grown talent, a more-or-less permanent place in the race for one of the premier division titles in the sport, a fearsome defense that means your unit could, say, finish no higher than 11th in the conference in total yardage over two seasons and you could still claim a role in 20 wins over that span. Les Miles ought to have his pick of nearly any offensive assistant in the country.

So why on earth would he pick this assistant?

Yes, the Baton Rouge Advocate means that Kragthorpe, Steve Kragthorpe, the coach most notorious for tearing down in the space of one season what had taken Bobby Petrino years to build at Louisville. As assistant coaching hires go, taking a flyer on one of the biggest head coaching failures of the past decade isn't going to be the most inspiring choice.

That's not to say it couldn't work out anyway. Kragthorpe had a highly successful tenure at Tulsa that won him the Cardinal job in the first place, and many of the failed responsibilities that led to his dismal record at Louisville won't be issues as an assistant. He also has productive experience as an OC, calling plays for R.C. Slocum at Texas A&M in the late '90s and even winning a Big 12 title in that role in 1998.

All the same, his Tulsa success was built on a foundation of solid defense rather than offense. And when you have as many options as Miles must have had for filling the vacancy, settling on a name so closely associated with the stench of misery at Louisville seems like, well, settling. Kragthorpe's hardly doomed to failure in Baton Rouge -- in fact, the grade of talent at his disposal suggests he could be a smashing success even without much in the way of innovation or creativity -- but until LSU fans see his offense in action, they should be forgiven for scratching their heads.

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: January 20, 2011 3:40 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

I am going to tell it like it is...... I am not an L.S.U. hater but folks this was truly a poor choice.

Kragthorpe took a team the returned 17 starters and won a BCS Bowl Game in to the laughing stock

of Div. I football. All those who keep saying that he is not going to be the head coach but only the O.C. I

Have news for you....Kargthorpe fired the O.C. @ Louisville and became the O.C. & Head Coach in his last year

with the program and Louisville went into reverse. Louisville got worse not better. The offense was very vanilla.

Kagthorpe is a nice man. He is well intentioned. He was an awful Head Coach and an even worse O.C. He never had a

winning record. Compare this to Charlie Strong with Kragthrpe's players and Louisville had a winning season and a

bowl victory !  Good Luck will need it.

Since: Sep 19, 2006
Posted on: January 20, 2011 1:47 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

kragthorpe was asked to clean up the thugs at louisville by the AC it takes time to rebuild after tearing anything down if he was given more time all would have seen that he is a winner.

Have to part ways with a Brother Sooner, but as a Louisville season ticket holder - I witnessed a total ship wreck.  And not just what Patrino had established - Louisville Football began its climb back in the 80's with Schnellenberger - and to see what became of the program in such a short time was devestating.

And with regards to the "thugs" reference - I wouldn't consider Elvis Dumervil, Harry Douglas, Omobi Okoye & Michael Bush less than execptional talent & character.

I wish nothing but the best for Kragthorpe & LSU Nation.

Since: Dec 5, 2006
Posted on: January 20, 2011 1:45 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

LSU is not hiring Kragthorpe to be the head coach.  He is being hired to be an assistant coach and he has been successful at doing that.  LSU is looking for a coach to develop quarterbacks and he has done that.  And Miles was looking for someone to run his type of offense, strong running game with a good passing game.  That is the type of offense that Miles employed when winning the NC in 2007 with Matt Flynn as QB.

And don't forget, he hired John Chavis and LSU not has one of the top defenses in the counttry.  Is the offense next?  As a Tiger fan, I am excited.  And Kragthorpe has good Texas ties and that should help recruiting in Texas. Geaux Tigers.

Since: Dec 7, 2007
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:59 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

I'm on the fence, we will see. He certainly cant be worse than Crowton was.

There are plenty of coaches who are terrible HC but great assistants. He should give us stability at the position of OC if he can get us within the top 40 in offense we will do well.

Someone like Fuente may have come in for 2-3 years, done well then gone to be a HC somewhere.

Since: Aug 11, 2008
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:50 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

I would imagine Petrino wouldn't get much love in Baton Rouge since he is 2-1 against Miles with an overtime loss. I'm guessing Saban probably isn't liked a whole lot down there either. Come to think of it Houston Nutt has won 3 of his last 4 against them so they probably don't like him either. Wow LSU doesn't like the majority of the coaches in the SEC West! And Kragthorpe failed at Louisville pure and simple; losers do tend to make excuses. 

Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:42 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

I don't know much about this guy, but I have to trust that Les has made the correct hire here.  We all know about his failures at Louisville, but he is not going to LSU to be the HC.  I did see where he was a QB coach in the NFL with the Billls when they had Bledsoe, and he was the OC at Texas A&M when they won a conference title.  No matter what, I don't think Kragthrope can do any worse for the LSU offense than what we have been these past three years, but that is not much of an endorsement.  The LSU nation wanted a new OC and we got one.  If Kragthorpe is indeed the guy, then he becomes my guy and I will definitely pull for him with all of my LSU pride.  We will know an awful lot about him the first game of the season as we start out against Oregon.   Geaux Tigers!!!

Since: Oct 30, 2006
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:25 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

Take it from me, Kragthorpe was solely responsible for the plunge at Louisville. His teams were undisciplined, poorly coached and lacked heart. It all stemmed from the top.

He's a nice guy, but as a head coach he was a complete disaster. Just look at the players that Strong is recruiting and those that Kragthorpe recruited. Night and day.

On the field, we were always out of position. Inexcusable. Kragthorpe fired his OC, then replaced his replacement in his final season. Our offensive production went down.

It's one thing to win at Tulsa, quite another to win at a BCS school. Louisville had finished in the Top 6, 2 of Petrino's final 3 seasons. And Kragthorpe shipwrecked the program in less than a year.

Insiders will tell you that the players didn't respect him as a coach. They liked him as a man. All you have to do is listen to the players who remained on how much better the new staff is.

I agree with this article. LSU could have done much better. Blaming Petrino for Kragthorpe's failures is simply ignorant and laughable.

Since: May 5, 2008
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:19 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

after the Sugar bowl in 2007, tOSU DC said what was so hard about playing LSU was never knowing what they were going to do.  So Many weapons you never knew which one was coming next.

the last 2 years, anybody could predict the next play...

and just about everybody knows that on 4th down when LSU went for it

MILES made the calls

weird how successful LSU is on 4th down...


FACT in 2007

Crowton was brought in and ran the system in place with a 5th year Senior QB

FACT 2008 and 2009

Crowton was not as successful-  chalk it up to young inexperienced QB's

Fact 2010

Crowton had experienced QB's, strong line and good skill players

he just didnt work out


watch LSU's offense climb the charts

Since: Nov 10, 2010
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:12 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

Kragthorpe can't be blamed for the mess that Petrino left behind at Louisville. Petrino doesn't get much love in Baton Rouge.
This will turn out to be a good hire. Kragthorpe has experience in college and the big leagues. He also has experience in coaching quarterbacks which Miles was looking for. He also fits well with Miles philosophy. Not all LSU fans are unhappy with this hire, I think he is a good fit for the Tigers. 

Since: May 5, 2008
Posted on: January 20, 2011 12:10 pm

Report: Kragthorpe hired as LSU coordinator

My questions are simple:

can he coach QB's?
     what did he do in the past?  who has he worked with?  what was their success?

can he call plays?
    what is his offensive coordinator background?  was the team successful?  run-pass combo's?


Some guys are assistants for a reason.  They can do 1 or 2 things well and if allowed to focus they get the job done. 

I have heard that Kragthorpe did well as an assistant, then did ok at Tulsa.  Fine they played no one, but had limited resources.  At Louisville he ran into a train wreck.  Some say he inherited a good team from Petrino.  Or maybe Petrino bailed when his QB left and he knew what was coming?  Being a poor head coach is not all bad.  Maybe he learned to take a good job and stay there.

my main concern is can this guy and Miles gel so that Ware, Blue, Ford, Shepard and other ball carriers get their snaps?

can Jefferson, Lee and Mettenberger get the ball into the hands of Shep, Randle, Landry and others enough to make big plays?

and can the guy just make it simple?


Gary Crowton was a good OC, BUT...

his success was always with smart QB's that understood what was being done and why.

Problem with GC, was he tried to outsmart the defenses so much he LOST his own guys...


BTW for the record

I like how Miles works behind the scenes to let coaches move on...

why fire somebody when you can suggest behind closed doors that it is time to move on...

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