Dig Baton Rouge

If Canada bolts, why not Hugh Freeze?

I am pretty good at reading body language and/or picking up on vibes.

With that said, I am not sure that Matt Canada will be back at LSU next fall – whether he becomes a head coach or not.

Of course, the talk about Baton Rouge this week (besides the ridiculous coaching searches around the country) has surrounded Canada after coach Ed Orgeron said at his post-game press conference last week that he hopes Canada becomes a head coach in the offseason, which, of course, would mean that he wouldn’t be back for a second season at LSU.

I thought the comments were a bit interesting – enough so that I decided to talk about it here.

Let’s study the facts.

Earlier in the season, LSU’s offense struggled and there were rumors of Orgeron meddling into offensive game planning. Neither Canada nor Orgeron has said publicly that there is a rift between the two, but enough was there for Athletic Director Joe Alleva to get involved and meet with both men earlier in the season. That usually means there’s a flame to go with that smoke.

And then there’s this: Canada is a natural-born drifter.

Canada almost never stays at one place a long time. He tends to come and go and bounce around a little bit – especially lately.

Since 2011, Canada has been with five schools. At three of his stops since then (Northern Illinois, Wisconsin and Pitt) he stayed just one season.

Some guys like to stick around and built for four or five seasons, but Canada isn’t that way. He is a bit headstrong and he tends to bounce from gig to gig like a touring rock band.

What could keep him at LSU for a while is his salary. He is making $1.5 million per season.

But then again, maybe the allure of being a head coach would allow him to accept less than that salary at a smaller school.

OK, so let’s assume for a minute that he’d leave. Who would LSU hire to take his place?

For me, that’s easy. How about former Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze?

The NCAA released its penalties against Ole Miss on Friday and in it, it was announced that Freeze is suspended two conference games as part of his role in the penalties.

But there are two important nuggets.

First, the penalty is only for the 2018 season and second, they only apply if Freeze is a head coach. If he is an assistant coach, he is free to coach for the duration of the 2018 season without penalty.

Again, assuming Canada would leave, I think he’s worth looking at.

Yeah, the NCAA stuff isn’t ideal, but Freeze is an offensive guru who has what LSU fans have been looking for.

He’s beaten Alabama … twice.

His teams usually have good quarterbacks.

And he runs a spread offense that is awfully hard to stop.

Look, I don’t want to see Canada go. I hope I wrote this entire troll for nothing.

But I just get the feeling that he won’t be back. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.


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