There’s a way to make Ed Orgeron chuckle.
Ask him about his field goal kickers. It’s become a laughing matter.
After at least four games this season, LSU’s woeful field-goal kicking has been a topic in a postgame news conference. Orgeron’s normal response is a smile and a snicker.
“Haha,” he bellowed last Saturday night. “We’re going to have to go out and recruit a field goal kicker obviously.”
Saturday’s 45-21 win over Texas A&M served as the third game in which LSU used two placekickers — a sign of the struggles at that position. LSU kickers are 15-of-24 this season, a 62.5 percent make rate that marks a recent historic low.
It is the worst field-goal kicking rate in 12 years. LSU kickers made 58.3 percent of their kicks in 2005. It is just the second time in the last decade that the Tigers’ field-goal kicking is below 70 percent.
Nationally, the mark ranks 103rd. LSU is one of just five Power 5 conference teams with nine or more missed field goals this season, joining Washington (9 misses), NC State (10), Texas Tech (11) and South Carolina (12).
The yo-yoing between walk-on sophomore Jack Gonsoulin and redshirt freshman Connor Culp continued last Saturday and could extend into next season. LSU does not have a kicker committed for the 2018 signing class, but Orgeron suggested the Tigers could look to the transfer market for one this spring.
“(We’ll) continue to give Jack and Connor a chance, but we’ve got to go get the best kicker available. Sometimes transfers are available after their senior year,” Orgeron said Saturday night. “We’re going to go find the best guy available. Getting tight on scholarships, but if we can find one that we think that’s great, that could take those guys’ place, we’re going to take him. If he’s not better, we’ve got to get those guys better.”
Culp, an Arizona native who signed in 2016 as the ninth-ranked kicker in the nation, made eight straight field goals before missing a 32-yarder and two extra-points against Arkansas on Nov. 11. He’s 11-for-15 on the season. Gonsoulin, a Baton Rouge native who started the season as the kicker, is 4-for-9 with three misses coming inside of 40 yards.
LSU field goal kicking
- 2017: 15 of 24 (62.5)
- 2016: 11 of 15 (73.3)
- 2015: 13 of 17 (76.5)
- 2014: 13 of 19 (68.4)
- 2013: 13 of 14 (92.9)
- 2012: 21 of 29 (72.4)
- 2011: 16 of 18 (88.9)
- 2010: 28 of 34 (82.4)
- 2009: 17 of 20 (85)
- 2008: 18 of 23 (78.2)
- 2007: 26 of 33 (78.8)
- 2006: 9 of 14 (64.2)
- 2005: 14 of 24 (58.3)
LSU ended the regular season tied with Alabama for the fewest turnovers in the nation with eight, a mark that is the fewest in school history and is, currently, the fewest amount of turnovers in recorded NCAA history, the school says.
LSU players have lost four fumbles and thrown four interceptions heading into a bowl game, a destination to be announced Sunday. Individually, the Tigers could set turnover-less marks, too.
LSU quarterback Danny Etling ranks second in Southeastern Conference history in interception-to-attempt ratio, throwing 7 picks in 511 attempts, a 1:73 radio. He trails only ex-Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron (1:86).
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LSU is beginning a $4 million project to upgrade the televisions at Tiger Stadium, the PMAC and Alex Box Stadium, the school announced Wednesday.
The Advocate reported about the issue previously, when athletic director Joe Alleva publicly announced the news during a speaking engagement in New Orleans.
The HD, flat-screen TVs are scheduled to be activated at the PMAC by mid-December, the school says. TVs will be installed at Alex Box Stadium and Tiger Stadium by the start of baseball and football season openers there in February and September.
Guice still on pace for SEC mark
Running back Derrius Guice continues to threaten Bo Jackson’s SEC record for career yards-per-carry.
Guice trails Jackson 6.620 to 6.613, a .007 margin. He’ll likely shatter the LSU record set by Leonard Fournette in 2014-16 of 6.22 yards a carry.
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