LSU football head coach Brian Kelly (boy, that felt weird to type) is less than 24 hours into his tenure as the Tigers’ head coach.
But he’s already working hard to build his staff in Baton Rouge.
According to a report from The Athletic’s Pete Sampson, Kelly has reached out to Notre Dame defensive coordinator Marcus Freeman about joining his staff at LSU.
Sampson reported that Kelly wants to make Freeman the highest-paid defensive coordinator in college football.
There would be some irony in Freeman joining the Tigers’ staff. He interview to be LSU’s defensive coordinator earlier this year, but he elected to join Kelly’s staff at Notre Dame (replacing Clark Lea, who took the Vanderbilt head coaching job).
Landing in Baton Rouge less than a year later under Brian Kelly is a move that no one could’ve predicted.
Two things that could keep LSU football from hiring Marcus Freeman
There are two big obstacles that could prevent Freeman from joining Kelly’s staff.
There are some rumblings that Freeman could be an option to replace Kelly at Notre Dame. If he’s offered the job, that’s a no-brainer.
The Notre Dame search, however, is in the early stages, so it’s unclear if he has a legitimate shot to land that job.
A bigger obstacle is Freeman potentially staying in South Bend as the program’s defensive coordinator.
I think this is something that has a good chance of happening, but only if Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell takes the Notre Dame job.
Freeman was Fickell’s defensive coordinator for four seasons at Cincinnati. He also played under Fickell (when Fickell was an assistant coach) at Ohio State.
It’s hard to imagine Freeman passing up the opportunity to reunite with Fickell at Notre Dame.
We’ll see how this all plays out over the next couple of days. As of now, I think it’s 50/50 that Freeman ends up at LSU.