5 reasons LSU football can win the national championship

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Nov 23, 2013; Boulder, CO, USA; Southern California Trojans interim head coach Ed Orgeron before the game against the Colorado Buffaloes at Folsom Field. The Trojans defeated the Buffaloes 47-29. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Steele/ Ed Orgeron is a better coaching duo than John Chavis/ Brick Haley

When defensive coordinator John Chavis decided to leave the LSU football team for the Texas A&M Aggies this offseason, one of the most successful defenses in the nation was suddenly filled with doubt.

But within weeks, the Tigers replaced Chavis with Alabama’s Kevin Steele. Shortly after, Louisiana native Ed Orgeron was added to the coaching staff as a defensive line coach. Brick Haley, LSU’s defensive line coach at the time, was reassigned and eventually took a job with the Texas Longhorns.

So why will the SEC’s top defense from 2014 be better this season with so many changes at the top?

Because although Chavis and Haley created a powerhouse on defense at LSU, the sum of their parts do not equal that of Steele and Orgeron.

It will be no easy task to replace Chavis’ incredible play-calling ability, as well as his prowess at managing a defense. And it is difficult to make a case that Steele is a better defensive coordinator as of right now.

But where Steele’s specialty lies is in coaching up a linebackers unit. With junior Kendell Beckwith being the only sure thing in the middle of the defense, this experience as a linebacker guru will be extremely valuable.

The biggest upgrade for the Tigers, however, will be the addition of Orgeron leading the defensive line.

No disrespect to Haley, but Orgeron just might be the best defensive line coach in college football. It is no secret that the Bayou Bengals are thin on the defensive line this year, and Orgeron is the type of coach that can turn an inexperienced unit into a dominant one.

The LSU football team has struggled up front in recent years, with their elite secondary making up for average play in the trenches. With two coaches that will immediately improve the play of their front seven, expect the Tigers to not miss a beat on defense.

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