Mel Tucker Leads the List of Candidates to be LSU’s Next Head Coach
On October 17, LSU announced that head coach Ed Orgeron would not return following the 2021 season. Orgeron took over as head coach of LSU in 2016. He led them to three straight bowl games, before winning the National Championship in 2019.
Since then, LSU is just 9-8.
While Orgeron has the job until the end of the season, sportsbooks have begun to release odds on who the next head coach will be.
Let’s check out the odds and find out who is the favorite.
LSU Football Head Coach Odds
With Ed Orgeron’s exit, LSU becomes one of the most desirable head coaching options. Michigan State head coach Mel Tucker has the best odds to land the job.
Interestingly enough, Tucker and Lane Kiffin opened as co-favorites, but the odds have shifted in Tucker’s favor.
Luke Fickell comes in with the third-best odds. If you ask me, I think he is a prime candidate for the USC head coach opening.
Now that we know the odds, let’s discuss Tucker’s background and his status as the favorite.
Why is Tucker Favored to Be the Next LSU Football Head Coach?
Mel Tucker has a long history in football.
His career began as a defensive back for Wisconsin in the early 1990s. His first coaching job actually came as a graduate assistant for Michigan State.
In 2000, Tucker went to LSU, serving as the team’s defensive backs coach. In that time, he served under head coach Nick Saban.
He served as the Cleveland Browns defensive coordinator in 2008. In his lone season in the role, the Browns finished second with 23 interceptions. The following season, Tucker assumed the same role with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Check out the improvement in the Jaguars defense in his three seasons with the team.
- 2009: 352.3 Yards Per Game (23rd)
- 2010: 371.8 Yards Per Game (28th)
- 2011: 313.0 Yards Per Game (6th)
Following a few more years as an assistant, Tucker landed his first full-time head coaching job in 2019 with Colorado. He went 5-7 before resigning at the end of the season.
In 2020, he took over as head coach of Michigan State. The team went just 2-5, but both of their wins were memorable. Michigan State defeated in-state rival Michigan and No. 8 Northwestern.
This season, Tucker has Michigan State in the top 10 with a 7-0 record.
With his success at Michigan State, could Tucker bolt for his third different school in four years?
Early on, it seems like the interest is coming from people within LSU. Tucker himself hasn’t come on and commented on the position.
Tucker clearly has the experience, with over 10 years in both college and the NFL. This season, he is showing how he can turn around a team due to elite recruiting and taking advantage of the transfer portal.
Michigan State is a good team, but they don’t have the same reputation as LSU. The thought of leading LSU to the National Championship could be enough to draw Tucker away from Michigan State.
The State of LSU Football
Right now, LSU football looks like a team trying to find their identity. They haven’t been able to maintain any success.
With college football, it only takes one strong recruiting class to change everything. Michigan State is the perfect example of that.
If Tucker can bring that recruiting expertise to LSU, who’s to say they aren’t a playoff team in the next year or two.