Almost three years ago, LSU brought home a Louisiana guy to coach the football team. Last week, LSU hired another Louisiana guy to take over as athletic director.
“We represent the people of the state of Louisiana,” Orgeron said. “The people in the state of Louisiana have a unique culture. They like to talk, they like to have fun, they like to be exciting. That’s what LSU is all about.”
Orgeron said he thought about his own introductory press conference when new LSU athletic director Scott Woodward was introduced to the media and public Tuesday afternoon.
“I thought about it, especially when it mentioned his parents and how proud his parents must be of him,” Orgeron said. “I know the feeling, being from Louisiana and getting hired from LSU is an honor.
“This is a place that everywhere we’ve been — I’ve been at USC, at Miami — but we’ve always wanted to come back to LSU. There’s something that attracts us. It’s that Cajun blood that we have.”
Woodward met with all the LSU coaches prior to his introductory press conference. Orgeron, as well as softball coach Beth Torina liked the things he said and are excited and optimistic about what he can bring to all the LSU programs.
“I’m excited,” Orgeron said. “I loved his interview and I love the things that he had to say. I met with him this morning. Scott has been very supportive of me. I’m very excited of the job that we’re doing. We want to win championships, and we all know the expectations at LSU.”
Torina said she spent a couple of days researching Woodward andshe felt like she came to an understanding of who he is and what he stands for.
Torina emphasized that LSU stands for excellence and believes that Woodward is the man for the job.
“I think he understands LSU and that’s a big key,” Torina said. “I think that’s kind of the feeling you get. He knows more people in the room than I do and I’ve been here for the last eight years. I think he knows the lay of the land and I think he’s well equipped for the job.”
While they are excited about Woodward, both coaches are grateful for the opportunity the former athletic director gave them.
“When Joe Alleva hired me, I loved him,” Orgeron said. “I’m very loyal to him and I’ll forever be indebted to him.”
“I’m very loyal to Joe,” Torina said. “He gave me an opportunity that has changed the outcome of my family’s life forever. I think I will always be grateful for him and this opportunity. I’m very confident in LSU and I wouldn’t be here if LSU didn’t stand for excellence in everything that we did.”
Woodward said the sports in this athletic department are like his children — he can’t prioritize one or two over the others, even if some produce more revenue than others.
He wants to be hands off, while also providing help wherever necessary to every single program.
“He wants it to be about the coaches and the athletes, which is very similar to my feelings too,” Torina said. “I want it to be about the athletes, not about me. I’ve had an opportunity to play the games. I liked a lot of the things he stood for, and we’re going to do it the right way. That’s how we want to live and what we want LSU to represent.”