Why Florida State can blame the Florida Gators if Jimbo Fisher leaves for LSU
NEW ORLEANS -- If LSU poaches Jimbo Fisher from Florida State, Seminoles fans can blame the Florida Gators.
That's my view, at least, from the floor of Gate B2 of the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. Follow along
Pregame Baton Rouge radio on my drive to the stadium focused on three candidates to replace Les Miles as the Tigers' next full-time head coach: Interim coach Ed Orgeron, Houston's Tom Herman and Fisher. I'm not vouching for the validity of sports-talk radio, but let's roll with it for a blog post that is admittedly pure speculation. And it meshes with other reports that have come out of LSU (some also include North Carolina's Larry Fedora).
If LSU wants Herman, it now has competition. A lot of it, after Texas' 24-21 overtime loss to Kansas. Yes, Kansas. Seriously. Kansas.
Barring a Thanksgiving miracle, that defeat means the end for Charlie Strong with the Longhorns. And that leads to Herman (or Fisher - some FSU folks think UT has a better shot of landing Fisher than LSU). It's hard to see Herman choosing LSU over Texas. That takes one potential strong candidate out of the LSU mix.
The case for Orgeron seemed contingent on a strong finish to the season after inheriting a 2-2 team. Then UF beat the Tigers 16-10 in Tiger Stadium, dropping LSU to 4-2 since Orgeron took over.
"Minor bowl abyss," as The Times-Picayune's Ron Higgins dubbed it, won't exactly fire up the fan base. Neither will losing to a rival, especially given the odd dynamics of the situation - LSU played a road game at home, against a banged-up opponent and still got beaten on the line of scrimmage when it mattered most. That's a hard sell for a program that just ran a national-championship coach out of town.
And then there's Fisher.
To be clear: I'm not saying he'll leave FSU, or that he should, even though I've made a historical case, that he might want to consider leaving. Fisher's family situation will play a factor, and there's no win total or extra digit in a contract that can change that.
Fisher has said that he wants to stay in Tallahassee. I'm not disputing that. But coaches don't always say the same things in December as they did in October or November.
If Fisher does end up bolting the ‘Noles for LSU, FSU fans can blame it on the Gators and the biggest goal-line stand in UF history.