Ed Orgeron shares latest on LSU's defensive coordinator search, believes Tigers are close to landing 'up and coming star'
LSU’s national search for its next defensive coordinator may finally be coming to an end.
After missing out on Cincinnati’s Marcus Freeman and New Orleans Saints defensive line coach Ryan Nielsen, both of which had reportedly landed the job according to at least one outlet during the process, the new candidate rumored to land the position is Minnesota Vikings defensive backs coach, Daronte Jones.
This news was first reported by Bruce Feldman of The Athletic. Of course, Feldman is very close to Ed Orgeron, as The Athletic writer has written two books on Orgeron’s coaching career.
During a Tuesday appearance on Baton Rouge-based 104.5 FM ESPN radio show Off The Bench, Orgeron was asked to share the latest on LSU’s defensive coordinator search.
“It’s not finalized yet but I feel really good about the process,” Orgeron said on the show. “Daronte interviewed (on Monday), did a very good job, very impressive. Knows the secondary/defense that I’m used to, the same coverages, same fronts, very sound, very articulate. I think he’d do a great job. I’m presenting the defense to our team and he’s an up and coming star in the coaching ranks.”
The LSU coach was then asked how Jones came onto his radar.
“He was recommended to me by Dave Aranda,” Orgeron answered. “I trust Dave and I called Dave and asked him (to share) his top defensive coordinators in the country and he and I went down the list.
“And there were several guys that I called, but they didn’t want to leave where they were at. So Daronte was right there where I interviewed him and it was an opportune time and I’m glad, if we do get him, I think he’ll do an outstanding job for us.”
Jones worked under Aranda during the 2015 season at Wisconsin. That season, the Badgers led the country by allowing just seven touchdowns for the season. Following that outstanding season for Wisconsin’s defense, Aranda was hired by Les Miles to run LSU’s defense.
The decision to return to Aranda’s defensive system makes sense for the Tigers, as LSU had one of the best defenses in the SEC during his tenure in Baton Rouge and while the offense got the majority of the credit for the team’s run to the 2019 SEC and national championships, the defense did its part during the final five games of the season to ensure the Tigers won it all that season.