From top to bottom, Ed Orgeron feels great about the roster he'll be displaying on the field in 2020. He's always said the Tigers have the talent but on Wednesday evening he took the praise of his current roster to another level.
While making an appearance on college football show "Big Noon Kickoff," Orgeron proclaimed that the 2020 LSU roster from top to bottom is right there as the most talented team he's seen since being named head coach after the 2017 season.
"This is a great opportunity, we've got a lot of hungry guys on this football team," Orgeron said. "We have a great roster right now, we've got as great a talent as any year that I've been here."
There was one caveat to Orgeron's answer and that comes with the unknown at the quarterback position. Junior Myles Brennan has waited patiently but now it's his turn to prove he can lead this team on the field.
Orgeron pointed to the quarterback position as the one that will make or break LSU's team this year, reiterating the point that the program doesn't expect Brennan to be Joe Burrow but rather the best Myles Brennan he can be.
"That is the position that is going to have to show up in order for us to have success," Orgeron said. "Myles has a really strong arm, he's very talented but we can't expect Myles to be Joe Burrow. If he's Joe Burrow, there's nobody that will be disappointed I promise you that. We’re not going to put a lot of pressure on him. We've got a lot of talent, we've got a lot of receivers. Making the right decisions at the right time will be key."
Orgeron also touched on the hiring of Bo Pelini and Scott Linehan in the offseason as major additions to the program. One of the best parts of Orgeron's development as a coach is his willingness to relinquish control to allow his fellow coaches the opportunity to thrive.
That'll be the case for both Pelini and Linehan, who Orgeron has given the reigns and allowed both to come in with inventive ideas on how to improve the defense and offense.
"I really believe we're going to be better on defense, we didn't play to the standard we wanted to play at last year and that's the reason I brought in Bo Pelini," Orgeron said. "Bo has wholesale change opportunity, it's his defense. When I go in there, I'm the assistant defensive line coach, I'm going to support him in any way I can. Scott Linehan has brought in some new ideas, he and Steve [Ensminger] have full control of the offense."
One of the components of an offseason for every college football team is establishing the culture among the players. Because LSU, like every other team in college football had to put that team building on hold, the next few weeks are critical in terms of establishing leadership and locker room chemistry.
Orgeron said at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, players and coaches were stuck at home but they were competing everyday to be prepared for a season.
"We have to reestablish the LSU standard of performance, how we handle our business on a day-to-day basis in the office as coaches and how we practice on the field," Orgeron said. "We stayed up to the daily task of what we'd normally do, came back in great shape and now it's time to practice."
Orgeron said it still hasn't sunk in completely about what that 2019 team accomplished because the coaching staff has been focused on the 2020 season. The ring ceremony on Tuesday night helped Orgeron reminisce as many of the players were able to return for the event.
"It was beautiful, it was a great memory and now it's time to move on," Orgeron said.