LSU football made a huge move this offseason when they hired Brian Kelly away from Notre Dame.
The Tigers decided to move on from Ed Orgeron midway through the 2021 season. And LSU athletic director Scott Woodward was determined to make a splash.
I’d say landing Kelly qualifies as a “splash”. Kelly has been regarded as one of the best coaches in the nation over the last decade. The success he’s managed to have at Notre Dame — a place where it hasn’t been easy to win over the last 20 years — has been nothing short of incredible.
Kelly will be tasked with turning LSU into a national championship contender once again. The Tigers are just two years removed from winning a natty, and the roster has some elite talent, but the program fell far short of expectations in 2020 and 2021.
Of course, Kelly won’t be doing it by himself. He has hired a solid staff of assistants — all new faces except offensive line coach Brad Davis — that should be able to help the program get back to the top of the SEC West.
247Sports grades LSU football’s coaching staff
247Sports’ Brandon Marcello graded the new college football coaching staffs this week and he had a favorable view of Kelly’s staff.
Marcello gave LSU’s new staff an “A”.
Here’s what he had to say about the Tigers’ assistants:
"He (Kelly) can probably push LSU into contention in 2023 with a couple of Top 5 signing classes and a half dozen instant-impact stars out of the transfer portal. He certainly built a tremendous staff to get those type of players on campus and develop them into superstars. Perhaps the biggest hire in assistant coaching circles was Frank Wilson, the McNeese State head coach who resigned from his post to become the Tigers’ running backs coach for a second time."
Marcello only handed out one “A+” and that was to Billy Napier’s new staff at Florida.
I have a feeling that had a lot to do with former LSU cornerbacks coach Corey Raymond joining the Gators’ staff. Letting Raymond leave Baton Rouge is the only move that I think Kelly should be questioned about. It’s hard to see that being a good idea (especially since he’ll be replaced by Robert Steeples, a coach that has never been a secondary coach).
On the whole, though, it seems that 247Sports really likes what Kelly did with his staff. That’s certainly a good sign as LSU enters a new era.