Steve Ensminger paused for a moment at the podium. The former LSU quarterback was choked up.
"I'm so excited about this opportunity. A tremendous honor. A job I've worked my entire career for," he said. "It's been offered before (to me), and it didn't work out."
A passionate and enthusiastic Ensminger, sporting a loud purple-and-gold tie, was introduced as the Tigers' new offensive coordinator Wednesday. The Advocate reported Ensminger's promotion Monday night.
Ensminger, 59, is expected to work alongside LSU consultant and longtime NFL receivers coach Jerry Sullivan, who is expected to be given a significant role in the offense. Sullivan's exact title is unclear, but he is likely to have a heavy hand in the Tigers' passing game.
The school has not announced Sullivan's promotion.
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After Les Miles was fired in September 2016, coach Ed Orgeron elevated Ensminger to interim offensive coordinator. Ensminger revealed later in the season at a Citrus Bowl news conference that he declined Orgeron's initial overture.
Why now for Ensminger?
"Was there any hesitation? No there wasn't. I'm the guys who knows these players ... I'm the one guy to lead them," he said Thursday.
Ensminger replaces Matt Canada, who after one season split with the school in a mutual financial agreement signed Friday. Canada will receive about half of the $3.3 million remaining on his contract, ending a somewhat messy 12-month marriage.
Ensminger, a Baton Rouge native, has not served as a permanent offensive coordinator in 20 years. He was last in that position at Clemson in 1997-98. He had stops as a coordinator/quarterbacks coach at Texas A&M (1994-96), Georgia (1991-93) and Louisiana Tech (1988-90).
Orgeron said he "researched some other guys" for the position but kept returning to Ensminger, who insinuated the Tigers will throw the ball plenty with the offense's 2018 strengths apparently at quarterback with Myles Brennan and an emerging group of wide receivers.