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‘This is a team that can win it all’: No. 3 signing class, combined with LSU’s returnees, have Les Miles and his Tigers thinking title

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU cheerleaders and the Golden Band from Tigerland work to pump up the crowd ahead of head coach Les Miles' arrival to the River Center, February 3, 2016, during The Gridiron Club Bayou Bash, which celebrates LSU's incoming recruiting class.

Fireworks in LSU’s 2016 signing class came in January, when five highly touted prospects enrolled early. Booms were heard in the summer, when eight recruits committed in an 18-day span in June. And the feel-good story of the class? That happened Sunday, when Zachary quarterback Lindsey Scott Jr. announced his commitment. That didn’t… Continue reading →

After a hectic, meticulous recruiting process, ‘someone big’ — LSU — fell in love with Lindsey Scott Jr.

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS --Zachary quarterback, and LSU commitment, Lindsey Scott, right, is all smiles and wearing an LSU cap at a signing ceremony at the high school Wednesday. Scott signed with LSU and five other players signed to play with colleges after graduation this May. At left is (OL) Kellton Hollins who is going to TCU

A football emblazoned with a red “Z” sits between two plants on a mantel in Lindsey Scott Sr.’s luxury Zachary apartment. He takes the ball and begins to toss it from hand to hand, walking around the apartment with headphones in his ear and a splintered iPhone in his hand. That ball was special. “Dad — aw, you’re not… Continue reading →

Zachary quarterback Lindsey Scott commits to LSU, giving Tigers their first QB in 2016 recruiting class

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Zachary High QB Lindsey Scott Jr., is an All-Metro MVP.

LSU’s search for a quarterback in the 2016 class is over. Continue reading →

Zachary QB Lindsey Scott gets LSU offer; Neville's Rashard Lawrence set for Friday announcement

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- Zachary High QB Lindsey Scott Jr., is an All-Metro MVP.

Andre Anthony is starting to get to know new LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda more than anyone. Aranda visited the Edna Karr product last week at his high school, and Anthony hung out with the Tigers’ new assistant during last weekend’s official visit to Baton Rouge. “Mastermind,” Anthony said in describing Aranda, who LSU hired away from… Continue reading →

NFL Films video: How troubled LSU star Tyrann Mathieu found personal, pro redemption in NFL

Arizona Cardinals' Tyrann Mathieu is seen before an NCAA college football game between LSU and McNeese State in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Sept. 5, 2015. (AP Photo/Jonathan Bachman)

Former LSU star cornerback Patrick Peterson says a lot of former Tigers are "tearing it up in the NFL right now, "But the one I'm most proud of is my best friend, Tyrann Mathieu." Peterson is narrator on an NFL Films video posted on YouTube last week. "Born & Bred in New Orleans: The Tyrann Mathieu Story" tracks the trials… Continue reading →

University High star, nation’s No. 1 recruit Dylan Moses transferring to talent-magnet Florida academy

Advocate photo by BRIAN ROBERTS -- U High LB Dylan Moses (6) and a pack of Cubs tackle a Donaldsonvile player at the Donaldsonville High School vs University high School game at U High's Jeff Boss field on November 5, 2015

Dylan Moses is taking his talents to Florida. Moses, the nation’s top-ranked 2017 prospect and a one-time LSU commitment, is transferring from University High to IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, he announced on Twitter on Thursday. Moses, a 6-foot-2, 220-pound linebacker/running back, called the decision the “toughest of my life” in a four-sentence post on… Continue reading →

Latest: LSU confirms four early enrollees arrive on campus for classes, but WR Dee Anderson yet to enroll

IMG Academies photo by Casey Brooke Lawson -- IMG Academy's Saivion Smith

Latest: LSU confirmed the addition of four early enrollees on Wednesday morning, but a fifth has yet to begin classes.

Cornerback Saivion Smith, linebacker Michael Divinity, receiver Stephen Sullivan and linebacker/running back Devin White have enrolled in classes, as The Advocate reported Tuesday. Receiver Dee Anderson, a Texas native, has not. See the full story here. Original… Continue reading →

Scott Rabalais: Crimson Tide didn’t simply roll to its 4th title in 7 years, making Monday night’s 45-40 victory over Clemson extra special

Alabama's Reuben Foster celebrates with fans after the NCAA college football playoff championship game against Clemson Monday, Jan. 11, 2016, in Glendale, Ariz. Alabama won 45-40. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Deshaun Watson ran evasive maneuvers and threw pinpoint passes to someone named Hunter Renfrow. Derrick Henry just ran and ran in his steamroller way, while Jake Coker rained bombs out of the sky on the Clemson defense. In a bowl season filled with duds and routs, including both national semifinals,… Continue reading →

LSU’s Leonard Fournette ends season with rushing title; incoming coordinator's defense led nation in scoring

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU running back Leonard Fournette (7) leaps over obstacles while running for a first down during the first half Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2015, in the AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl.

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Heisman Trophy eluded Leonard Fournette, but not the FBS rushing title. Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry of Alabama needed to rush for 381 yards against Clemson in Monday night’s CFP Championship Game to surpass Fournette’s 162.8 yards per game average. Henry finished with 158 yards on 36 carries,… Continue reading →

LSU’s Bayou Bash heading back to Baton Rouge River Center

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU head football coach Les Miles talks about his new recruits during the 2014 Tiger Gridiron Club's Bayou Bash.

LSU’s Tiger Gridiron Club Bayou Bash recruiting party is moving back to its old stomping grounds. The bash will be held this year at the Baton Rouge River Center in downtown, said bash chairman Chuck Goodwin. L’Auberge Casino and Hotel hosted the event for the past two years, but space issues have precipitated a move back to the spacious… Continue reading →

‘You’ve got to slay a dragon’: Clemson’s high-flying offense takes aim at Alabama’s daunting defense in the College Football Playoff title game

Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) attempts to evade Oklahoma safety Ahmad Thomas (13) on his way to a touchdown during the first half of the Orange Bowl NCAA college football semifinal playoff game, Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Joe Skipper)

When Clemson coach Dabo Swinney was a player at Alabama back in 1992, the Crimson Tide already had won the national championship with a 13-0 record. Swinney’s Tigers are 14-0, but they still have one more game to go to stay No. 1. The game — and the challenge — couldn’t be bigger.… Continue reading →

Scott Rabalais: With a shot at yet another national title, Nick Saban is unquestionably college football’s best — and maybe the best ever

Alabama head coach Nick Saban speaks during a news conference for the NCAA college football playoff championship game Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

If you coach Alabama to a national championship, you get a statue outside Bryant-Denny Stadium. Even if it’s a lame national championship, like the one Alabama claims in 1941 from something called the Houlgate System for a Frank Thomas team that went 9-2 and finished No. 20 in the AP poll. Oh,… Continue reading →

No. 1 for now -- and in future? LSU football’s recruiting class the nation’s best at moment, but still work to do

Advocate staff photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ-- At six feet and six inches tall, Willie Allen towers over most of his John Curtis Christian School teammates as they play against Holy Cross at Tad Gormley Stadium in New Orleans, La. Friday, Oct. 23, 2015.

Willie Allen admits it would be cool to be part of the nation’s top signing class. Kristian Fulton agrees. After all, the Tigers’ current recruiting class is on pace to be the first consensus No. 1 group in school history. Who wouldn’t want to be a member of such a historic haul? “You want to be… Continue reading →

Marcus Spears, former LSU player turned TV analyst, says Les Miles has to improve offense — or ‘I don’t think he’ll last the year’

PHOENIX — Former LSU All-American Marcus Spears likes Les Miles’ bold hire of Dave Aranda as the Tigers’ new defensive coordinator, but he says LSU’s long-time coach has to be just as bold in modernizing the offense. “I don’t think he’ll last the year if he doesn’t change,” said Spears, who is here covering the CFP National Championship Game… Continue reading →

LSU center Ethan Pocic, tackle Christian LaCouture to return

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- LSU quarterback Brandon Harris (6) prepares to take a snap from Ethan Pocic (77) against Texas A&M.

LSU center Ethan Pocic and defensive tackle Christian LaCouture plan to return for their senior seasons. Pocic, a 6-foot-7, 310-pound draft-eligible junior, flirted with leaving school early but has decided to pass on entering the NFL draft and remain at LSU, he told The Advocate on Friday afternoon. LaCouture posted a message on Twitter on Friday night announcing… Continue reading →

Highly touted North Webster running back Devin White signs with LSU, bolsters loaded 2016 class

North Webster's Devin White (photo courtesy of 247 Sports)

Make it five. North Webster running back and linebacker Devin White signed with LSU during a ceremony at his high school Friday afternoon, joining four other early enrollees and boosting the Tigers’ already top-ranked class. White, a 6-foot, 258-pounder, is the fifth-best athlete in the 2016 class, according to 247Sports. White is the latest highly regarded player to join… Continue reading →

Ex-LSU quarterback Bert Jones, ex-Saints kicker Morten Andersen among nominees for College Football Hall of Fame

LSU’s most decorated quarterback, a pair of former New Orleans Saints greats and a Louisiana coaching legend are among 200 nominees for this year’s induction class into the College Football Hall of Fame. LSU quarterback Bert Jones headlines the Louisiana contingent. Also nominated are long-time Saints kicker Morten Andersen of Michigan State, Saints Hall of Famer John Hill… Continue reading →

The next step: LSU OT Jerald Hawkins heading to Arizona on Friday to begin training with an old friend

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU offensive tackle Jerald Hawkins (65) congratulates LSU running back Leonard Fournette (7) on his touchdown against Texas A&M.

Jerald Hawkins will miss the Louisiana humidity “a little,” he said during an interview Thursday. A couple of seconds passed. “Not really,” the former LSU left tackle said laughing. Hawkins is leaving Friday for the dry heat of Arizona, where he’ll train for six weeks at a facility with other draft-eligible… Continue reading →

Mississippi State pursuing LSU’s Ed Orgeron while LSU works on a new deal, sources confirm

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron stalks the sideline in the second half of the LSU-Texas A&M football game in Baton Rouge, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015. LSU won, 19-7.

Mississippi State is pursuing LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron for its open defensive coordinator position, even as Orgeron and LSU are discussing extending the coach’s contract with the school. Continue reading →

LSU junior tackle Jerald Hawkins will enter the NFL draft

Advocate file photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU tackle Jerald Hawkins looks to block Mississippi State defensive lineman Torrey Dale during a game last season.

LSU left tackle Jerald Hawkins will bypass his senior season and enter the NFL draft, according to a message he posted on Twitter on Wednesday evening. Hawkins, a 6-foot-6, 305-pound junior from Baldwin, is a fourth-year player who redshirted as a freshman. He had to be encouraged to return last season as a draft-eligible sophomore. LSU… Continue reading →

Ex-LSU defensive coordinator Kevin Steele on Auburn: ‘I want to be here the duration of my career, and I’ve never been able to say that before’

Kevin Steele speaks to the media after being introduced as Auburn's defensive coordinator Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, at Auburn Athletic Complex  in Auburn, Ala. (Julie Bennett / via AP) MAGS OUT; MANDATORY CREDIT

AUBURN, Ala. — Kevin Steele is hoping to halt Auburn’s defensive coordinator turnstile. Hired away from LSU, Steele has returned to the state aiming to revive the fortunes of a struggling defense now led by its fifth defensive coordinator in six years — and third in coach Gus Malzahn’s four years. “I want to… Continue reading →

Scott Rabalais: As LSU’s defense goes modern under new coordinator Dave Aranda, it’s up to Les Miles to modernize the offense, too

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- LSU football coach Les Miles, center, answers media questions following a news conference introducing new defensive coordinator Dave Aranda on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016.

Taken simply on the merits of trying to get the best person for the job, LSU’s hiring of Dave Aranda to be its new defensive coordinator is significant enough. If Aranda didn’t trade Wisconsin red for LSU purple and gold — and the green of a three-year contract that will reportedly pay him $1.3 million next season… Continue reading →

John Ehret linebacker Michael Divinity putting ‘my big boy pants on,’ signs with LSU

Advocate file photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- John Ehret linebacker Michael Divinity celebrates a fumble recover against St. Augustine at Hoss Memtsas Stadium on Aug. 20.

Michael Divinity made it official Tuesday morning: He’s headed to LSU. Divinity, the standout linebacker from John Ehret High School, signed his scholarship papers and will be enrolling in classes in Baton Rouge starting Jan. 13. “It’s crazy,” Divinity said. “It hasn’t really hit me yet, but I know it will eventually. I knew this day… Continue reading →

Dave Aranda, the ‘absolute star’ of last year’s coaching search, introduced as LSU’s new defensive coordinator

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS --New LSU football Defensive Coordinator Dave Aranda answers media questions during a press conference on campus Tuesday.

Dave Aranda’s introductory news conference as LSU’s defensive coordinator was a year in the making Continue reading →

LSU, offensive coordinator Cam Cameron working on new contract; Les Miles expects assistants staff to stay intact

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron shouts on the sideline during the second half of the Advocare V100 Texas Bowl.

LSU is working on a new contract for offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, athletic director Joe Alleva said Tuesday, and coach Les Miles expects his staff of assistants to remain intact. Cameron, 54, is in the final months of a three-year contract that expires on March 31 and pays him an annual salary of $1.5 million. During a news conference… Continue reading →

Dave Aranda, newly hired by LSU, should prepare to become a household name, former Tiger coach Gerry DiNardo says

Gerry DiNardo  (AP File Photo/Darron Cummings)

LSU's new defensive coordinator Dave Aranda will have to get used to the football-obsessed "craziness on the bayou" in south Louisiana, former Tiger coach Gerry DiNardo said Monday. DiNardo, an analyst for the Big Ten Network for the past nine years, coached LSU from 1995 to 1999. Last week, Aranda, who spent three seasons as Wisconsin's defensive coordinator, agreed to a… Continue reading →

Sources: LSU QB Brandon Harris scheduled for hernia surgery, played with injury for last six weeks

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU quarterback Brandon Harris (6) scampers past the outstretched arms of a Texas Tech Red Raiders defender to score a touchdown during the second half Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2015, in the AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl. LSU won 56-27.

LSU quarterback Brandon Harris underwent a surgical procedure for a sports hernia Monday and will miss about six weeks, according to multiple sources. Harris, the Tigers’ starting quarterback this season, suffered the injury in the game against Alabama on Nov. 7 – a 30-16 loss that started LSU’s three-game losing skid. He is expected to recover from the… Continue reading →

Defense steals the show in Under Armour All-America Game; LSU quarterback target Dwayne Haskins taking his time

ORLANDO, Fla. — As all-star games go, Saturday’s Under Armour All-America Game was the sort of exhibition you’d expect when you try to put together a football team of 18-year-olds in one week. Officially, Team Highlight defeated Team Armour 27-0 , but the real winner was anybody playing on defense. Team Highlight… Continue reading →