Blog Entry

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

Posted on: August 26, 2011 1:42 pm
Edited on: August 26, 2011 2:54 pm
 
A promo banner across the top of LSU's website Friday could have passed as a taunt considering the current state of the program.

Who's Next?

At the moment -- and check back frequently for updates -- LSU goes into its mega-match with Oregon in eight days diminished and disgraced. Once again, updating from two seconds ago, LSU ...

--is currently under NCAA investigation because of its dealings with Will Lyles.

--will be missing its fastest player and best big-play threat Russell Shepard against Oregon due to suspension.

--has no idea whether starting quarterback Jordan Jefferson and backup linebacker Josh Johns will ever play again. Both were suspended indefinitely Friday within an hour of warrants being issued for their arrest. The two were expected to be charged with second-degree felony assault stemming from the infamous Shady's bar fight.

--in the middle of all this, awarded coach Les Miles with a contract extension on Friday. Before the outrage boils up, be advised this just happened to be a serendipitous convergence of events. School officials were already scheduled to meet Friday to rubber stamp the deal.

Get your heads up, Tiger Nation. This is what passes for closure. This is what many of you wanted. Your team went 11-2 last year and you blamed Jefferson. At best, he was the most experienced quarterback on the roster. At worst, he had become a huge distraction. Law enforcement decided the issue. 

Who's next? Senior Jarrett Lee. He's not a difference maker. Don't worry, it's not like LSU has been churning out top draft choices at the position, but fans being fans they're always looking toward the next best thing. Some of the more uncaring had tagged Lee "Pick Six." Can't imagine why. This is the same guy who in an eight-game stretch in 2008 threw 10 interceptions. Five of them were returned for touchdowns. That includes a four-pick performance in an overtime loss to Alabama.

Lee is now perceived as somewhat of a savior. First, because he's the only guy on the roster with any notable experience. Second, he's not Jordan Jefferson. It's easier now to remember Lee's heroics last season against Alabama (key third-down pass) and Florida (game-clinching touchdown pass to Terrence Tolliver).

Closure might not be the right word. LSU might actually be better without Jefferson. But that's not the point either. Whether LSU beats Oregon or wins the SEC probably wasn't going to hinge on the quarterback. The Tigers have won national championships with a former minor league catcher (Matt Mauck) and with a savvy guy who shows up nowhere among the school's top 10 career passers (Matt Flynn).

Lee is serviceable, which is all LSU needs right now. There isn't that much of a drop off between him and Jefferson. The difference is Lee is committed having lost 30 pounds and, well, eligible to play. Transfer Zach Mettenberger is the guy on the come but still third-string.

As mentioned, it's not like the program has been producing top NFL quarterbacks lately. But it has been winning -- big.

Miles didn't earn that extension because of his grass-eating ability. He won 62 games in six seasons in the toughest conference in the country. His name continues to pop up for big-time jobs, especially at Michigan. LSU has won under Miles (and Nick Saban before him) with two time-worn SEC strategies -- running the ball and playing defense.

And talk about clock management, Les is a changed man. Barely 30 minutes passed before Miles suspended the two players after word came down about the arrest warrants. 

So in a strange way it is a more stable LSU program heading into the season opener. We know for certain that Jordan Jefferson is an accused felon right now. That doesn't mean he's responsible for what is reported to be the battery of a bar patron. It doesn't mean he's guilty or will serve jail time.

It means that we know his situation going forward. LSU and Les can move on. The coach knows he has been betrayed. Miles went to wall in defending his inconsistent senior. It looks like Jefferson has repaid him with a slap in the face.

It's not like Oregon has its Ducks in a row heading to Arlington. The program has had its own unfortunate dealings with Lyles. Defensive back Cliff Harris is suspended himself having successfully proven it's possible to get a rental car up to 118 mph on I-5 while driving with a suspended license.


Who's next? Maybe a lawyer and an NCAA investigator at the 50 for the coin toss.

Comments

Since: Dec 22, 2008
Posted on: August 31, 2011 12:12 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

I am an Oregon fan.  Having grown up in Oregon, I have rooted for the Ducks through the many bad years and now the good.  Right now though I am a little more than disgusted at how the Ducks have had law enforcement issues with players over the last few seasons, and am even more disgusted that it seems to be the norm for top ranked teams (in the nation) to have these issues.  While I hope the game is good and Oregon prevails, I am not going to lose sleep if they don't.  It seems that when teams recruit student-athletes who are courted by sleaze-bags like Lyle, everyone gets what they deserve.  My thoughts - quit imposing sanctions on the teams and start imposing sanctions on the coaching staff and the Universities.  Put the coaches out like they just did with Pearl and fine the Universities the full amount of any revenue generated during the season.  Once you hit the people in charge in the pocketbook, they will think twice about recruiting thugs that aren't smart enough to realize a free education should be sufficient reason to stay out of jail.



Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: August 30, 2011 6:57 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

"Now if Dodd and Doyel can just stall till the season starts, they can conveniently get past the fact that LSU's quarterback was caught on cell phone cameras committing a felony.  Allegedly, of course.  Those cell phone videos could be lying."

@mrbcs--Wow, you may want to give that cellphone video to the police as they are looking for it.  You must be the only person in the country that has seen it and can recognize Jefferson as the police can't.  I do think there is some lying going on here, but it is not by the cell phone video.  If you are going to make stuff up, do a bit more research. 




Since: Aug 29, 2011
Posted on: August 29, 2011 10:24 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

OMG ... I don't have a team in this discussion, but let me ask this. Have Ohio State fans already forgotten Maurice Clarett? He was one of the prized recruits very early in the Tressel era. Those red flags that should have been waving aren't Buckeye banners. But then this is the school that gave us The Punch when Woody Hayes decked the Clemson player. Buckeyes bite your tongues and drop those stones. You really don't have a case in this one.



Since: Oct 15, 2006
Posted on: August 29, 2011 9:17 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

And if they are found guilty, I'm sure you'll see the same thing out of Doyel and Dodd that they did with OSU.  They have to be found guilty first.  We don't live in your communist society of guilty until proven innocent.  It's called benefit of the doubt.


Yes, I remember the months of outraged articles by Doyel and Dodd a few years ago when Alabama had 201 athletes abusing their free textbook privileges, including seven football players.  "Four football players were the worst offenders, obtaining books worth between $2,700 and $3,950."  I would actually be somewhat impressed if they had cheated to get the books to read themselves, but that wasn't the case.  Anyway, it was only "the third probation penalty for university athletics in the past decade."

Former Auburn defensive lineman Stanley "McClover says he received $4,000 after having four sacks in a game against Alabama. "  That's one of many quotes from the HBO Real Sports special this spring about corruption in college football, and Auburn took the lead role in that piece.  Of course Dodd and Doyel jumped all over that one with article after article.  Not.

In fact all 12 SEC schools have been hit with major sports infractions since 1990.

"When I took over (in 2002) half our institutions were somewhere in the NCAA infractions pipeline,” said SEC Commisioner Mike Slive.

Now if Dodd and Doyel can just stall till the season starts, they can conveniently get past the fact that LSU's quarterback was caught on cell phone cameras committing a felony.  Allegedly, of course.  Those cell phone videos could be lying.

Of course if SI comes out with an article naming additional Ohio State players involved in a swap of memorabilia for tattoos, they'll treat it like fact.  Forget that parents are suing SI with the ridiculous argument that their son couldn't be involved because he doesn't even have a tattoo.

Let's see.  What company employs Dodd and Doyel?  CBS.  What network pays about $55 million a year for SEC football, which dominates their Saturday fall schedule?  CBS.  Expecting the writers here to treat the SEC as harshly as they did OSU is like asking the Big Ten Network to welcome Nebraska with a big hit piece.  It's just not going to happen.





Since: Nov 6, 2008
Posted on: August 29, 2011 1:37 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

Dodd, these marvelous sec stories about these superior athletes are such a joy to read!




Since: Sep 19, 2008
Posted on: August 29, 2011 10:56 am
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

You obviously don't know the real situation from the "bar fight".  Funny how the media hasn't brought it to light, but justice will be served.  It will be nothing like the pistol whipping LSU is going to give the Ducks in Dallas.  Stay limp my friend, stay limp.



Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:56 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

They are not. LSU's is worse.
I wasn't aware that LSU athletic department went into a bar and beat up a bunch of guys.  Last I checked, it was a few players.  No coaches, ADs, assistant coaches, or anybody else affiliated with LSU as a university was involved.  It was a bunch of kids who got drunk and did something stupid.  So, since they aren't similar in any form or fashion, why should Doyel and Dodd get up in arms with LSU over something that LSU had nothing to do with?  Only an ignorant jackass would blame a university for something that some of their players did.  Kind of like blaming parents for their offspring murdering someone.

LSU is under investigation for ties to an agent AT THE SAME TIME.
And if they are found guilty, I'm sure you'll see the same thing out of Doyel and Dodd that they did with OSU.  They have to be found guilty first.  We don't live in your communist society of guilty until proven innocent.  It's called benefit of the doubt.




Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:51 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

Lots of things are reported, it was reported LSU paid for players like Peterson.  Should we belive everything that is "reported"?
We have proof that Tressel violated NCAA rules, so why shouldn't I believe that one?  An assistant of Tressel's was the one who talked about the raffles.  Where's the proof with LSU?  Once again.  I'll wait.



Since: Oct 15, 2006
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:31 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

I'm still waiting for Dodd and Doyel to show their outrage and self-righteouness over this like they did over the Ohio State situation.
Please explain to me how those two situations are similar.  Go ahead.  I'll wait.


I'll take this from another viewpoint.  I'll tell you how they're different.  Dodd and Doyel write for cbssports.com, the website we're on right now.  CBS sports pays roughly $55 million a year to air SEC games.  That is the bulk of their college football schedule.  Imagine for a minute that the Ohio State starting quarterback was kicking a guy in the head while he was down.  Do you think for one minute the articles would now be about how this was going to affect the Buckeyes on the field?  If you think the sportswriters here are some bastion of integrity who don't favor their own pocketbooks, then take off you SEC-colored glasses for a minute and think this through a bit.  The LSU quarterback is reportedly on video(thank you for cell phones or this might have been easy to brush aside) committing a felony.  That's pretty bad.  Forget about the 49 shoes and the natural questions that might raise.


On another note, here's a little quote attributed to former Buckeye Robert Rose from the SI article.

“I knew how much money that the school was making,” Rose told SI. “I always heard about how Ohio State had the biggest Nike budget. I was struggling, my mom was struggling. … It was just something that I had to do. I was in a hard spot. … [Other] guys were doing it for the same reasons. The university doesn’t really help. Technically we knew it was wrong, but a lot of those guys are from the inner city and we didn’t have much, and we had to go on the best we could. I couldn’t call home to ask my mom to help me out.”

This is the real issue.  It's not that OSU is paying their players.  They're not.  The players see how much tickets and memorabilia go for and they rationalize that they should get a chunk of that.  Shady people around any of the big programs are willing to oblige.  If you don't think the players at LSU are getting little nickel and dime benefits, you're crazy.  I wonder if the LSU players even payed for their own drinks that night at Shady's.  If they got free drinks because they were football players, wouldn't that be an NCAA violation? 



Since: Jun 30, 2009
Posted on: August 28, 2011 12:50 pm
 

Quarterback not key issue with LSU going forward

It was reported that, during campus trips, all recruits were entered in a raffle for prizes, all sanctioned and administered by Tressell.  Turns out the raffles were rigged so that the blue chip recruits won.  *sniff sniff*  Smells like Tressell was handing out gifts to blue chippers to get them to come to OSU.

I've said it before, pay these kids something, but don't pretend like Tressell barely violated any kind of NCAA rules.


Lots of things are reported, it was reported LSU paid for players like Peterson.  Should we belive everything that is "reported"?


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com