With little warning, LSU announced Saturday morning a scheduled press conference for 1 p.m. ET at which it would announce its new coach. Moments later, The Advocate's Ross Dellenger reported that interim coach Ed Orgeron was to be hired as the full-time coach. The Tigers made that official hours later.
It was reported late Friday that LSU was choosing between Houston coach Tom Herman, who it neared an agreement with on parameters of a deal as of Thursday, and Orgeron, who apparently became the only other candidate after going 5-2 as interim coach in place of Les Miles.
Since LSU is acting so quickly after a meeting with Orgeron on Friday, it is reasonable to believe the Tigers have been informed by Herman and his representation that the coach plans to focus on the Texas job.
According to Dellenger, Orgeron, a 55-year-old native Louisianan, "blew away" LSU's brass, including athletic director Joe Alleva, with his "long-term plans" contained in a "massive binder" he brought to the meeting.
Part of those plans is reportedly attempting to hire Lane Kiffin as offensive coordinator, according to Dellenger and FootballScoop.com, which also reported Orgeron's hiring. If successful, Orgeron would be swiping Kiffin from Alabama coach Nick Saban, which would reverberate in the SEC West. Kiffin, however, also reportedly is interested in head coaching jobs. Considering offense was a large part of the reason LSU fired Miles, this would be Orgeron's most important hire.
This will be Orgeron's second full-time stint as a coach in the SEC West. Ole Miss hired Orgeron, then an assistant at USC, as head coach in 2005. After three rocky seasons that included a 3-21 SEC record, Orgeron was dismissed.
He returned to college football in 2008 as defensive line coach under Kiffin at Tennessee, following him to USC before taking over as the interim coach of the Trojans in 2013. After taking 2014 off, he joined Miles' LSU staff as defensive line coach in 2015 and has spent the past two seasons with the Tigers.
Orgeron is 11-4 as an interim coach at USC (2013) and LSU, compared to 10-25 as a full-time head coach.
Under Orgeron this season, LSU beat Missouri, Southern Miss, Ole Miss, Arkansas and Texas A&M, falling to Alabama (10-0) and Florida (16-10).
Texas, after dropping its final two games to Kansas and TCU, reportedly was set to fire coach Charlie Strong in a Saturday morning meeting and then turn its focus to Herman. It has been reported that Herman, who has spent most of his career coaching in the state of Texas, sees the Longhorns as his "dream job."