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LSU head coach Ed Orgeron addresses the crowd, Wednesday, February 1, 2017, during the 2017 Bayou Bash on National Signing Day at the Belle of Baton Rouge.

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK

LSU football coach Ed Orgeron is chatting up a recruit. "Whaddayasay!" The small talk includes food (gumbo is a popular topic), coaches or past players from the recruit's area.

Nearby, Tiger football staff members are waiting three deep, each with a prospect on the line waiting to hear a few words from the coach. It's a mad rush leading up to Signing Day, captured in great detail by Fox Sports senior reporter Bruce Feldman in a feature titled "72 hours inside Ed Orgeron’s LSU war room."

"War room" is right, as the coaches strategize, analyze reports from the field, celebrate recruiting victories and deal with defeats.

All the while, Orgeron marvels at how the pieces of his life and career had to fall just right to lead him to this moment in time at LSU.

Some nuggets from the story:

  • Photos of past LSU teams have appeared in the hallways of the football offices. Some say former Coach Les Miles didn't want to display old championship photos containing Nick Saban. "Ed doesn't worry about any of that B.S.," someone comments.
  • Among the sparse decorations in Orgeron's office: A wooden plaque that was given to him by a fan that says “NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER QUIT!” It reminds him of his father.
  • Orgeron, who trusts his ability to evaluate talent, loves being the first one to offer a prospect. It builds loyalty, he says, to be the first college coach to believe in a player.
  • Leading up to Signing Day, defensive coordinator Dave Aranda points out that LSU has more kickers on scholarship than linebackers. “We’ve got to get that fixed,” Orgeron says.
  • Celebrating a recruiting victory facilitated by linebackers coach Dennis "Meatball" Johnson, Orgeron leads the staff into chants of “MEATBALL! MEATBALL!”
  • In the midst of 2017 recruiting, time is set aside for an update on 2018 and 2019 prospects.

Recruiting, as it turns out, never ends.

See the full story here.