Surrounded by four police officers, Ed Orgeron strode into the Rose Bowl on Saturday with his briefcase, his crisp grey suit and his inability to be anyone but himself at all times.
From somewhere up above the tunnel to the visitors’ locker room, Orgeron heard a heckler yelling that UCLA was about to beat Orgeron’s formerly mighty LSU Tigers. Coach O — because he’s always Coach O — couldn’t help himself.
“Hey! Hey! Bring your (expletive) on. … Bring your (expletive) on in your sissy blue shirt!” he said before letting out a harumph as if that line about the random UCLA fan’s shirt color really told him who was boss.
All in all, it was probably a harmless, good-natured interaction, though the term “sissy” probably isn’t going to show up in the best practices of any HR manual anytime soon. Also, not the best look to then lose to said team wearing those “sissy blues.”
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Still, it’s the kind of thing that you’d never see Nick Saban or Brian Kelly or Kirby Smart do — which makes Orgeron an endearing, everyman hero to some, an absolute clown to others. The ultimate judgment lies in what happens on the field. And at LSU, that judgment can be unsparing.
Just two seasons after the Tigers’ magical run to the national title, Orgeron is in trouble, the…