Well, we've hit the end of 2015 here at ATVS and we're...preparing to cover a defensive coordinator search and wondering about the direction of LSU's offense in the offseason so...awesome, not much changed, great!
Of course, that's not true at all. Ed Orgeron came to town. Baseball made it back to Omaha. Softball made it to Oklahoma City. Basketball signed the most-hyped player in school history (let's just skip talking about the rest of that). And we got to watch Leonard Fournette fulfill his destiny to become the best running back in college football, and the greatest in runner in LSU's history. Whatever you think of this season, that part of it was pretty damn awesome.
For me, personally it was...well, it was a year. As many of you know, I lost my job at LSU in July. It's been...well it's been an experience this fall. Spending more time taking care of my daughter day-to-day has been great in a lot of ways, and I think we had our best football season here in terms of content. I've learned a lot of lessons. Some that I wanted to, others that I didn't. And many that I needed to.
Hopefully, that part of my life starts to change this year, with some luck and some prayers. Whether it was my decision or not, I do think that getting away from the environment of the university administration was a good thing for me, for a lot of reasons I won't get into here.
But anyway, here's to a Happy New Year to you and yours, and while we're here, we'll look back on some of my favorite posts from the last year.
1. Hurricane Katrina & Les Miles at 10: Still weathering the storm
This one was something I had conceived of in 2014, and spent a lot of time working on. A real labor of love that you might say took on added importance after my departure from LSU. I wanted to recall how the Les Miles Era dawned, and all of the craziness that was August of 2005. I also wanted to tell the story of people like Lois Stuckey, Greg Stringfellow, Shelly Mullenix and Jack Marucci, because they're all fantastic at what they do for LSU football and they've all been instrumental in the program's success in the last 20 years or so. And they were all wonderful people who were very nice to me during my time at the university. I also couldn't have done it without the help of Derek Ponamsky, Jacob Hester, Quinlan Duhon and Alan Stevens, who shared their stories as well. SB Nation's Jason Kirk and some friends also helped me put it all together. I set out to write the best thing I had ever written, and I think I did that, and I hope everybody enjoyed it.
2. Kevin Steele and LSU: the Good, the Bad & the Ugly
This seems relevant again, no? Look, we all have our reactions to coaching hires, and it's easy to just have a quick and easy one, especially when they have the reputation that Steele had when he came here. So I wanted to get as many angles as I could to it, because there always are multiple viewpoints. You don't get to where Steele has been in his profession if you're the "bad" coach that many dismiss him as. I was lucky enough to get the opinions of a lot of people I respected, and I think that a lot of the points, both for better and worse, held up a year later as we can look back.
3. On LSU's Quarterback Problem, and Focusing on the Right Things
Probably my most controversial posts, and the comments certainly got heated, but I stand by what I wrote. Discussion of LSU and quarterbacks tend to fly off the rails quickly, mostly because of how most people discuss and argue about things in the echo chamber that is the internet, where most things fall into two different extremes of a very broad, complex topic. I felt it was a topic that many didn't really understand, and some still don't, and I wanted to try and explain things. Without rehashing it all, I hope some came to an understanding.
4. Nick Pizzolatto Presents: SEC Media Days
Okay, now for some fun. This was kind of a crazy fever dream I cooked up during the SEC Media Days coverage and LSU Alumnus Nick Pizzolatto's True Detective Season 2. Dan did yeomen's work here, coming up with some damn good shops on pretty short notice late at night.
5. Are the Gators ready for the Madness?
Our football wrasslin' promos probably jumped the shark a bit this season if I'm being honest, and I'm sure a pretty small percentage of the readership enjoys them (and Poseur won't stop complaining). But whatever, they're fun to write, and this one was pretty near to my heart and something that had I'd wanted to get right for a few years. And the Florida game, which was probably the most fun regular season game of the year for LSU, wound up being a pretty great sitting target.