Ed Orgeron responds to criticism amid camp drama

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Thursday June 15, 2017

The issue of LSU and satellite camps in the state of Louisiana is only getting bigger, and Hal Mumme says he’s taking it to the NCAA.

Earlier this week, Sports Illustrated wrote a second story about LSU using political pressure to keep schools in the state from hosting out-of-state schools for camps. Division III Belhaven (MS) was set to host a camp at a Louisiana high school this week that included Texas, Houston and others, but it was canceled right after the story.

Mumme, Belhaven’s head coach, went on 99.1 The Game in Birmingham on Thursday and said he’s taking LSU and Ed Orgeron to the NCAA over this. He says all the high school coaches wanted him to come, but the people above them made the decisions.

I don’t see how a public figure at an SEC school can basically extort people into not using their facilities for the public good,” Mumme said.

Before Mumme’s comments, Orgeron was also on the radio this morning, joining 104.5 ESPN Radio in Baton Rouge, and the topic was brought up.

I love the state. We’re the flagship school. We want to give every man, every player in the state of Louisiana great opportunities. We’re doing that,” Orgeron said. “We’ve brought in every state school to our camp, recruit the guys. …

“We go to the state of Louisiana. Alabama, Mississippi, they come into our state. That’s the way recruiting goes. We like our guys to come to our camp. We recruit guys that come to our camp, and that’s what we do. We’re excited we teamed up with the schools in the state of Louisiana. A lot of guys are offered scholarships in our camps. We had over 1,000 guys on campus. This weekend, we’ll have 500-700. Next week, colleges from all over the state of Louisiana that can offer scholarships. What a great opportunity for the boys in Louisiana.”

In reality, satellite camps don’t help the LSUs and Texases as much as they help the Group of Five and lower-level schools. But Orgeron needs to fix his own in-state recruiting. In 2016, LSU signed nine of the top 10 players in talent-rich Louisiana. In 2017, LSU signed only three, and Alabama got three of the top five.

LSU won’t say they’re the reason Texas, Michigan, Houston and other schools have been booted from camps in Louisiana, but the other people involved say they are. Orgeron is sticking with the belief that it helps the state.

A lot of times, when you have Louisiana Tech there, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, McNeese State, they’re waiting for the guys we don’t offer, and they offer,” he said. “What a great opportunity for our young men.”

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.