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Report: LSU Closing in on Assistant Hires

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Media reports link candidates to staff openings.

Mickey Joseph
Former Nebraska QB Mickey Joseph in the running.

Per a report from Ross Dellenger in The Advocate this afternoon, LSU appears to be closing in on replacing Dameyune Craig and Jabbar Juluke:

Southern California running backs coach Tommie Robinson and Louisiana Tech running backs coach Mickey Joseph have emerged as the LSU football coach's top targets to replace assistants Dameyune Craig and Jabbar Juluke, a source told The Advocate on Monday.

Robinson jives with our report from last week, and was a name given to me by a source after the fact, alongside Memphis assistant David Johnson — whom I was later told, by a different source (coaching! searches! *clapclap...clapclapclap*) is not a major candidate.

USC’s running backs coach/running game coordinator would absolutely be a slam-dunk hire for Ed Orgeron. Robinson has a fairly long track record; he’s in his second stint at USC, after working there in 2013 on Lane Kiffin’s staff, along with Orgeron, and even spent time with Les Miles, both as an assistant with the Dallas Cowboys in the late 90s, and then on Miles’ first staff at Oklahoma State. The Phenix City, Ala., native has worked coast-to-coast, from Los Angeles, to Texas (at UT and TCU), to Miami and Atlanta. He was also named Recruiter of the Year this year in the Pac-12 by 247 Sports, after helping the Trojans close big on National Signing Day to land in the top five in the team rankings. His roster of commitments includes five-star running back Stephen Carr this year, along with five other top-120 recruits, and his past includes players like Duke Catalon and D’onta Foreman.

Mickey Joseph is the more interesting name — he comes from a long line of New Orleans-area athletes, including brothers Vance, and Sammy, who all played at Archbishop Shaw High School and went on to play college football. Joseph was a star quarterback at Shaw in the late 80s, and went on to play for Tom Osbourne’s Nebraska teams. Younger brother Vance, also a former Big-8 quarterback at Colorado, was recently named head coach of the Denver Broncos. Sammy, the youngest , was a highly recruited cornerback out of Shaw, and signed with Vance when he was coaching in Boulder before eventually transferring to LSU in 2004. Additionally, cousin Terry Joseph has been the defensive backs coach at Texas A&M (responsible for most of the Aggies’ minor recruiting successes in the state), and is now on Larry Fedora’s staff at North Carolina.

Off-hand, Joseph doesn’t have the track record of some of the other names mentioned, even among those with ties to the Crescent City. He’s largely coached at smaller colleges, with his current stint at Louisiana Tech after spending the 2013-15 seasons at Alcorn State and Grambling. What that suggests is that he’s likely pitched Orgeron and the rest of the staff on some specific ties he has to some of the talents coming out of the NOLA Metro Area in the coming years. He would certainly have connections with coaches in the city.

Joseph has also coached receivers and special teams, so in theory, he could handle either responsibility there. Word is that a full-time special teams coach may be hired if the NCAA approves the reported 10th full-time staff position. But for now, LSU only has two openings.

We will stay on top of this story as it develops.