Kragthorpe steps down as offensive coordinator

LSU offensive coordinator Steve Kragthorpe talks about the upcoming season at the last stop on the Tiger Tour in Baton Rouge. Show caption
LSU offensive coordinator Steve Kragthorpe talks about the upcoming season at the last stop on the Tiger Tour in Baton Rouge.

Steve Kragthorpe has relinquished his role as LSU’s offensive coordinator but will stay on as quarterbacks coach after being diagnosed with Park-inson’s disease. Head coach les Miles made that announcement after the Tigers’ first practice of fall camp Thursday morning.

Offensive line coach Greg Studrawa, who is in his fifth season at LSU, is the new offensive coordinator.

“Our concern is for Steve and his family,” Miles said. “We are all hopeful that he will have the opportunity to coach for a number of years and be at LSU and continue the things he has gotten started here. We will do what-ever we can as an LSU football family to help Steve and his family during this difficult time.”

Kragthorpe, who was hired during the offseason to replace Gary Crow-ton, spoke briefly with reporters after Miles made the announcement.

“I want to thank coach Miles for the opportunity to come here initially and for the opportunity to stay here,” Kragthorpe said. “This is obviously a bit of a blow to myself, but by the same token we’re a family of great faith and will be exactly where God wants us, and that is at LSU.

“I am very excited to coach the quarterbacks. We have a great (staff). When I was the offensive coordinator before this happened it was all of us together in the same room. I think that will continue to remain that way. We have a great staff and a great group of guys. I hope for the next 10, 12 or 14 years that I can be here at LSU coaching the quarterbacks. It is a place that I love. I love the team, the staff and working for Les.”

Studrawa was offensive coordinator at Bowling Green for four years be-fore joining the Tigers in 2007.

“I feel very comfortable in the direction we’re going,” Miles said. “I told coach Studrawa that this is a battlefield promotion. I hired Kragthorpe as coordinator, but we are fortunate to have a veteran offense and offensive coordinator that can step in and make these calls.

“This promotion for Greg gives us reason to not miss a beat and to con-tinue on. First, Kragthorpe is going to be in every huddle, every play call and in the press box. He will assist fully with game plan and the passing game will be called with him and (wide receivers coach/passing game co-ordinator) Billy Gonzales’s thumb on it. Coach Studrawa will understand how to get it done.”

LSU canceled player interviews that were scheduled to take place after the morning practice and said there would be no player interviews Thurs-day. Freshmen and selected veterans were scheduled to practice Thursday afternoon.