LSU Football: How Ed Orgeron is the perfect ‘CEO’ for the Tigers

Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports /

LSU football head coach Ed Orgeron wouldn’t be the coach he is today without getting fired at Ole Miss in late 2007.

Orgeron didn’t find success at Ole Miss for one primary reason — he was a micromanager. Coach O forced the USC offensive system on offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone, which obviously didn’t work.

Mazzone stayed in Oxford under Orgeron for one season before he was fired.

Orgeron didn’t let his assistants coach. He wanted them to basically be an extension of himself.

And that’s not a recipe for success in college football.

Orgeron also tried to coach the entire team like he was coaching the defensive line.

That’s not going to work, either. Every position group is different.

“Those techniques that I used to create some of the best defensive lines in the country did not work as a head coach,” said Orgeron in late 2016 (via Saturday Down South). “But they were applauded of a defensive line coach. So I had to get out of that mode and get more into the head coach and delegate and not be the hard butt on the staff.”

The lessons Orgeron learned by failing at Ole Miss are what turned him into what he is today — the perfect CEO for LSU football.

The perfect CEO for LSU football is Ed Orgeron

Orgeron does a lot of things differently now than he did over a decade ago at Ole Miss.

For example, Orgeron often meets with the leaders of the team, as he did this week, and just listens.

“It was just nice to go to a relaxed setting, let them talk, listen to them, get closer to them this year at the beginning of the year in the spring instead of waiting until the season,” said Orgeron during an appearance on 104.5 in Baton Rouge on Tuesday. “I think more or less, the first thing for me to do is for our coaches and for me to get closer to our team and invest in our team so nothing can ever come in between us.”

Those are the types of things the CEO of a football program does. It’s not all about X’s and O’s — that’s why programs have coordinators.

Another example of Orgeron being a great CEO is something he did on Tuesday morning.

Orgeron told 104.5 that he had just finished up an academic meeting with redshirt senior quarterback Myles Brennan.

I think folks forget sometimes that academics are a huge part of a college athlete’s life. And it’s clear that Orgeron is invested in his players and how they’re doing in the classroom.

“You look at Austin Deculus, Liam Shanahan, who we never have to worry about academics coming from Harvard, I know that,” said Orgeron on Tuesday. “They’re doing phenomenal in the classroom. They’ve got all As and Bs. That’s leadership.”

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Orgeron is having major success at LSU because of his past mistakes. That’s the sign of a great coach who is going to continue to great.