247Sports recently ranked their top 15 assistant coaching hires of the offseason and LSU football was prominently featured in the top five.
Unfortunately for the Tigers, it wasn’t all positive.
247Sports listed new LSU assistant coach Frank Wilson as the fifth-best assistant coach hire this offseason.
New Tigers head coach Brian Kelly hired Wilson, a former LSU assistant under Les Miles, away from McNeese State where he was serving as the program’s head coach.
Wilson is known as one of the best recruiters in the country and someone who can help Kelly dominate recruiting in Louisiana (Wilson is a New Orleans native).
Hiring Wilson was obviously a savvy move by Kelly, who will certainly need some help navigating in-state recruiting.
A former LSU football assistant was ranked as one of the best hires of the offseason
Ranked just above Wilson on 247Sports’ list was former Tigers cornerbacks coach Corey Raymond, who was hired by the Florida Gators last month.
Raymond, who played college football at LSU, had been an assistant in Baton Rouge since 2012.
And The Valley Shook described Raymond recently as the “godfather of DBU”. He’s one of the best recruiters in the nation and one of the best cornerbacks coaches in the country. Raymond has helped LSU churn out NFL defensive backs like Jamal Adams, Tre’Davious White, Kristian Fulton, Grant Delpit, and Donte Jackson, among many others.
Letting Raymond go to Florida — the Tigers’ permanent cross-division rival in the SEC — feels like a massive mistake.
There’s no one that can replace what Raymond brought to LSU — he was the best cornerbacks coach that Kelly could’ve had on his staff in 2022.
(247Sports says Raymond is the most impactful non-coordinator hire of the offseason.)
Kerry Cooks, a former defensive assistant under Kelly at Notre Dame, will likely serve as LSU’s secondary coach in 2022.
I’m sure Cooks, a Texas native who played college football at Iowa, is a great assistant. But he’s not Corey Raymond.
Kelly’s hire of Wilson deserves a lot of praise, while his decision to let Raymond leave for Florida deserves questioning. Those two decisions feel like a push.