Baseball Archives Football Archives Basketball Archives
Which Is Worse?

I watched the Tigers' heart-breaking loss at Georgia Saturday and, when it ended with the Bulldogs ahead 82-80, I asked myself this question:

Which is better - to get blown out as the Tigers did in their previous 14 straight losses or to lose a close one that you could have won if one or two plays (and officiating calls) at the end went your way?

  • The Tigers had lost only three of the previous 14 games by single digits, the closest being a four-point defeat at Auburn.
  • But even in the single-digit losses, they were not leading in the last minute of the game.
  • After viewing it live and several replays, I'm still looking for a foul on J. J. Frazier's final drive to the basket that resulted in the two FTs that put the Dogs one ahead with 1.6 seconds to play. It looked like Duop Reith went straight up on the play and did not enter Frazier's space.
  • I'm not one of those who say the refs should put away their whistles in the final minute of a close game and "let the players decided the outcome." But calls like the one on Reith are not often made during the middle of a game, much less at the end when everything is on the line.
  • To answer the question I posed above: I prefer the Tigers to lose by 5-10 points rather than being blown out - where I change the channel long before the game ends - or losing in the last seconds as happened Saturday.

I continue to be puzzled by how little discussion surrounds the question of who will replace Johnny Jones.

  • I googled "Who will be LSU's next basketball coach?" and got a number of articles from last fall on Les Miles's replacement but only two hits in the top ten on basketball and both of those were from early January. (One of them, "Is firing Johnny Jones the only way to fix LSU basketball?" is worth reading because it's still relevant.)
  • I posted an article a few weeks ago on the young Chattanooga coach, Matt McCall. The newly-fired coach of North Carolina State, Mark Gottfried, is another possibility since he coached Alabama (his alma mater) from 1998 to 2009.
  • In contrast to what happening with LSU's coaching situation, Gottfried's firing at N. C. State immediately produced an article in the Raleigh News Observer listing potential replacements.
    1. Dayton coach Archie Miller, 38, branded "top target" for N. C. State, his alma mater where he also was an assistant coach.
    2. Butler coach Chris Holtmann
    3. UNC Wilmington coach Kevin Keatts.
    4. Will Wade, second-year coach at Virgniia Commonwealth.
  • If an ACC school like N. C. State, which values basketball much more than LSU, can't produce a better list than that, what hope does LSU have of landing a top-notch replacement for Jones?

Of course, two former LSU coaches are available.

  • John Brady, who led LSU to the Sweet Sixteen in 2000 and the Final Four in 2006, is unemployed after eight seasons at Arkansas State.
  • Trent Johnson, whose 2009 Tiger team won the SEC regular season championship (with the talent he inherited from Brady), was fired as TCU's coach at the end of last season.

LSU’s 2016-17 basketball season is such a debacle and the list of replacements so uninspiring that Brady looks mighty tempting to me. 

Tigers in the Draft

USA Today Sports Weekly has a listing of NFL Draft prospects that has LSU players rated differently than most of the lists I've seen.

  • Three in the top ten:
    3 Jamal Adams S
    9 Leonard Fournette RB
    10 Tre'Davious White CB

Rankings by position

  • RB: 2. Leonard Fournette (behind Dalvin Cook of Florida State)
  • WR: 19. Travin Dural, 25. Malachi Dupre
  • TE: 14. Colin Jeter
  • G-C: 7. Ethan Pocic
  • DT: 13. Davon Godchaux
  • ILB: 5. Duke Riley, 8. Kendell Beckwith
  • CB: 2. Tre'Davious White (behind Mashon Lattimore of Ohio State)
  • S: 1. Jamal Adams

The most interesting ranking is ILB, where Duke Riley is #5, three spots ahead of Beckwith.

  • Duke came from not on anyone's radar after his junior year to #5 after a year under Dave Aranda.
  • Riley (6' 230) is undoubtedly ranked ahead of Beckwith (6'3" 255) because he is faster and therefore may be used in multiple ways - outside LB who is a pass rusher one play and a safety or a nickel back the next.

Other thoughts:

  • USA Today Sports Weekly is the first ranking I've seen that has Fournette #2.
  • Colin Jeter even making the list of TEs shows how underused he was at LSU. He had 12 receptions in 2016 for 132y and 1 TD.

Top of Page

About This Site
This site is devoted primarily but not exclusively to college and pro football. The unique feature of this site is the publication each fall of the author's rankings of all FBS college football teams and similar rankings for the NFL. I live in New Orleans and am a graduate of LSU and FSU. So I present a Southern and particularly an SEC point of view but one that is reasonably objective. I also publish a monthly Football Magazine with stories from the past and a monthly Baseball Magazine with a similar format. During the winter and spring, there's a monthly Basketball Magazine.

web counter
web counter
Hits since 8/3/12

For Your Reading Pleasure

They Aren't Really Thinking about Keeping Johnny Jones, Are They?

NEW Edition of the Golden Baseball Magazine [2/19]
Cardinals Clubhouse
---Four pennants in a row - 1888
---Cardinals Quiz
The Ultimate Game 2001 World Series - Game 7
Odd Baseball Facts
- Confused Umpires and More
How Would You Rule? -
Three men on a base
Baseball Quiz
- Match player with record he set.
Short Story - Life with Charlie O.


RECENT Golden Football Magazine [12/24]
Tiger Den: 1960 Sugar Bowl
Saints Saga: Streak Buster - 1980 Opener
Seminoles Sidelines: Profile - Warrick Dunn - II
Profile: Bill Walsh - IV
Super Bowl III - The Game
Short Story: "The New Reality"
How Well Do You Know the Rules?
Football Quiz


RECENT Golden Basketball
Basketball Short Story I'm Not Stanley Roberts.
Tiger Den Basketball Season in Time: 2005-06 - NCAA Tournament Round 3
Profile The Fab Five - V
Basketball Quiz Colleges Never in NCAA Tournament

About This Site

Past Articles

Tigers in NFL - 2016


Top of Page