Lee, Jefferson lead list of LSU free agents

LSU quarterbacks Jordan Jefferson (9) and Jarrett Lee (12) are shown during practice for the BCS Championship at the Louisiana Superdome.

AP Photo by Bill Haber

Seven former LSU football players have signed free agent contracts with NFL teams after going undrafted last week.

They include:

  • QB Jarrett Lee (San Diego Chargers)
  • QB Jordan Jefferson, LB Ryan Baker (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
  • DE Kendrick Adams (Jacksonville Jaguars)
  • OG Will Blackwell (Carolina Panthers)
  • TE Deangelo Peterson, OL T-Bob Hebert (St. Louis Rams)

In addition, three Tigers have been invited to free agent tryout camps: fullback James Stampley (Seattle Seahawks), deep snapper Alex Russian (Pittsburgh Steelers), offensive lineman Greg Shaw (Detroit Lions).

LSU sports information director Michael Bonnette tweeted Monday afternoon that deep snapper Joey Crappell and tight end Mitch Joseph were in talks with teams but have no deals signed yet.

Five LSU players were drafted last week:

  • CB Morris Claiborne, first round, Dallas Cowboys
  • DT Michael Brockers, first round, St. Louis Rams
  • WR Rueben Randle, second round, New York Giants
  • SS Brandon Taylor, third round, San Diego Chargers
  • CB Ron Brooks, fourth round, Buffalo Bills


Full text of BCS news release

Below is the full text of the BCS news release from Thursday.

It takes a bit of reading, but the meat of the statement is in the fourth paragraph where it says the BCS will present “a very small number of four-team options” to its conferences for them to consider.

There will be no 8- or 16-team playoff. In addition, BCS exec Bill Hancock told reporters at Thursday’s meeting the possibility of having two semifinal games plus the Rose Bowl between the Pac-12 and Big Ten, then determining the two teams for the championship game, is also dead.

There’s a lot of work to be done – starting with how to determine the four teams for the playoff and how to divide the cash bonanza a college football playoff is sure to provide. But it is now apparent, perhaps even surprisingly so, that college football will have a playoff. BCS officials say they hope to have a plan finalized as early as July 4.

Remember, though, the current BCS system will still be in place for the next two seasons, which is through the January 2014 BCS bowls. That’s because of TV contracts currently in place.

Bowl Championship Series

Every Game Counts

Bill Hancock, Executive Director


April 26, 2012

Statement by the Eleven Conference Commissioners and the Notre Dame Athletics Director

“As part of our deliberations, we have carefully considered a number of concepts concerning the post-season structure for the BCS.  From the start, we set out to protect college football’s unique regular season which we see as the best regular season in sports.  We are also mindful of the bowl tradition and seek to create a structure that continues to reward student-athletes with meaningful bowl appearances.

“Having carefully reviewed calendars and schedules, we believe that either an 8-team or a 16-team playoff would diminish the regular season and harm the bowls.  College football’s regular season is too important to diminish and we do not believe it’s in the best interest of student-athletes, fans, or alumni to harm the regular season.

“Accordingly, as we proceed to review our options for improving the post-season, we have taken off the table both an 8-team and a 16-team playoff.

“We will continue to meet and review the exact structure for what a new post-season could look like.  We are making substantial progress.  We will present to our conferences a very small number of four-team options, each of which could be carried out in a number of ways.

“We have discussed in detail the advantages and disadvantages of in-bowl or out-of-bowl games.

We have discussed in detail the advantages and disadvantages of campus sites or neutral sites.  We have discussed in detail the advantages and disadvantages of various ways to rank or qualify teams.

“Our process is proceeding as we have planned and we look forward to further conversations.”

[statement ends]


LSU releases plans, renderings of Tiger Stadium expansion

LSU has at last released renderings and official plans for its south end zone expansion of Tiger Stadium.

Athletic department officials will present their proposal to the LSU Board of Supervisors at their April 27 meeting.

As was reported in The Advocate on March 1, the addition would include 60 suites (capacity of 24 people in each) and a 1,500-seat upper deck. The LSU plan now calls for about 3,000 club seats as compared to about 4,000 as was first reported in March.

An unspecified number of standing-room only tickets will also be part of the plan, as will be two new large video boards in the southeast and southwest corners of the stadium above the south end zone’s existing rim.

According to LSU, Tiger Stadium’s capacity would increase from 92,560 to just above or below 100,000. Back in March, we pegged the new capacity of Tiger Stadium at about 99,500.

If approved, construction would begin this fall with a target of completing the addition in time for the 2014 season. The existing scoreboard in the south end zone will be removed before the 2013 season, though the one in the north end zone will remain in place.

Tiger Athletic Foundation (TAF) will seek a $100 million bond issue to fund the expansion project plus some additional facility needs for tennis, track and field and gymnastics, according to LSU athletic director Joe Alleva.

To see a photo gallery of the Tiger Stadium expansion project, click here.

Jones to be LSU’s next basketball coach

LSU will fill the school’s basketball vacancy with North Texas coach Johnny Jones, a source close to the hiring process told The Advocate. The source said an official announcement about the hiring is forthcoming.

Jones was a candidate for the job in 2008, after John Brady was fired and before Trent Johnson was hired.

Johnson went 67-64 at LSU before leaving Sunday for TCU.

LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva met Tuesday night with Jones, who played guard for the Tigers in the early 1980s and later served 13 seasons as a Dale Brown assistant.

Jones, 51, recently finished his 11th season at North Texas, which he has made into a perennial Sun Belt Conference power. The Mean Green is 190-146 during his tenure with two trips to the NCAA tournament.

He signed a seven-year extension in April 2011 worth more than $400,000 annually, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Jones led North Texas to NCAA tournament appearances after winning the Sun Belt Conference tournament in 2007 and 2010. The Mean Green went 18-14 with a young roster this past season, but found its way to the Sun Belt title game for the third year in a row.

Jones was a controversial figure late in his tenure as an LSU assistant, when he was alleged to have funneled payments to star recruit Lester Earl. However, the NCAA eventually cleared Jones of any wrongdoing.