Upon getting the LSU defensive coordinator job, Daronte Jones reached out to his star cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. In his three years in Baton Rouge, Stingley had never received a call from Dave Aranda or Bo Pelini.
Sure he'd communicate with them on a daily basisfor football reasons but one of the big reasons Ed Orgeron brought Jones on board was because he's a coach who can relate to his players. And getting to know some of his brightest stars on a personal level was one of the areas he addressed in his opening press conference.
On Monday, Derek Stingley Sr. went on The Jordy Culotta Show to give some updates on what his son is working on this offseason and the potential of him playing on offense in 2021 for the Tigers. However, during the conversation he also talked about what Stingley Jr. early impressions were of the new defensive coordinator.
Stingley Sr. has been a coach at the high school level for many years and has helped develop and train not only his son but other LSU and high school defensive backs in the offseason as well.
"I was really impressed with Jones," Stingley Sr. said. "I believe you could see the passion coming through. I believe he's gonna relate to these kids and do what's best for them. Derek really likes him, he's already had a few conversations with him, personal conversations where coach Jones reached out to him and called him on certain occasions.
"Derek called me immediately after and was like 'Dad, Pelini never called me, Aranda never called me.' They'd talk to me yeah but not have personal relationships like coach [Corey] Raymond. It just shows he's relating to these kids. I'm pretty sure Derek's going to want to run through a wall for him."
At times last season, Stingley was obviously a bit beat up and had to miss the final two games of the season against Florida and Ole Miss. Stingley recorded 27 tackles and five pass deflections in seven appearances for the 2020 season.
The physical traits are always there for Stingley to excel so what he and his father have been working on this offseason is mainly the mental side of the game.
"It's all mental for him," Stingley Sr. said. "It's just a matter of understanding 'you're gonna have some setbacks' but you have to come back from it. You can't dwell on it, can't feel like you let the team down because someone caught a five-yard pass on you. He was so used to having that success and he never really had that adversity. Know your strengths, know your weaknesses and get by."
One point in time it was highly speculated that Stingley would be able to help LSU on the offensive side of the ball but those are conversations that haven't been visited in a while according to Stingley Sr. At this time, the junior cornerback is simply trying to improve every day to be the best defensive back he can be.
"Me personally, I think we got a good group of wide receivers to where we may not need him," Stingley Sr. said. "But if they wanna throw something in there with him, I'm perfectly fine with that and I know Derek is as well."