For years And the Valley Shook has been my favorite website.
I remember stumbling across this place when I was working for LSU’s IT Help Desk. I don’t remember exactly what the first Valley Shook piece I read was but I was hooked nonetheless. Maybe it was one of Dan’s Better Know a Freshman pieces, a post-game review of Billy’s, or Zach Rau’s Life as an LSU Bandsmen series. All I know is once I found this place, I knew I found the source for all things LSU. The writing was sharp, the analysis was deep and the community was strong. Even better it was the kind of site that talked about LSU the way I would with my friends.
And that’s why I am incredibly proud and honored to say I’ll be taking over as the new site manager of this great website.
I never thought I’d be the one running things for And the Valley Shook. All I wanted was to just be part of the team. In December of 2018 I sent Billy a message on Twitter asking if I could write about women’s basketball. I didn’t care if I got paid, I didn’t care if I could go to games, I just wanted to write about LSU. Luckily for me, Billy and PodKatt took a chance on me and I’ve been living my dream ever since.
Writing about the women’s team eventually led to me splitting men’s basketball duties; that led to me becoming the main hoops guy and I got to cover last season’s SEC Championship and Sweet 16 run. I even got to go to Nashville for the conference tournament and D.C. for the Sweet 16. One minute I’m crossing my fingers hoping to have a seat at the Valley Shook table, the next I’m talking to Tracy Wolfson a few hours before the LSU-Michigan State game.
When basketball season ended I got asked to help with baseball coverage. Then football season rolled around and suddenly I’m doing the weekly Playing Nice interview. All because Billy and PK decided there was room for me here, and for that I’m forever grateful.
I never once thought I’d be the one running things here. When I read Billy’s farewell post I was just as sad and stunned as you all were. I’d be lying if I wasn’t nervous about upholding all the good work he’s done here. You never want to be the guy after the guy. Billy is And the Valley Shook’s Joe Burrow, and I guess that makes me Myles Brennan. As nervous as I am, I’m equally excited. I’m ready for this. Covering LSU sports has always been a dream of mine and I won’t take this role lightly. I’m treating this like a job.
There won’t be many drastic changes here. The biggest difference is that we’re making a new Twitter feed, separate from PodKatt’s. We’ll tweet stories from it and maybe use that handle to live tweet games if we ever get sports back. You can find the new Twitter handle @ATVShook.
Speaking of sports, you might have noticed how there aren’t any at the moment. When they come back, we’ll be ready. Until that time comes, we’ll do our best to keep content coming. Our daily Burrow Bracket should carry us through early June. I also want to try and get us into the re-watching games trend, be it through Google Hangout or Zoom or some other platform. If you guys have any content ideas you want us to explore, by all means reach out to me, I’m open to all suggestions.
I truly believe there’s no other website like And the Valley Shook. And I want you all to trust I’ll give this site everything I have to continue the legacy Billy left and hopefully take it to new levels. There’s no place in the world like Louisiana, no school like LSU and no website like And the Valley Shook. For years I would turn here to read smart, interesting, fun, engaging material about LSU; and I promise that whenever you come here, you’ll always find that same quality work.