It’s tough to say that Danny Etling wasn’t good for the LSU Tigers last year, but with that being said he wasn’t great. He ranked outside of the top 40 in both passing yards and touchdowns, and the Tigers went 9-4 finishing 3rd in the SEC West. Unsatisfied with 3rd place, Ed Orgeron worked his magic and landed a graduate quarterback transfer from Ohio State in the form of Joe Burrow. Burrow, a 4-star recruit coming out of high school redshirted his freshman year and played only a backup role his sophomore year before battling some injuries forcing him to redshirt again his junior year.
A talented quarterback on a stacked roster, and luckily for Tigers fans, there simply wasn’t enough playing time to go around.
With the Tigers looking to take the next step this year, here is some background information on the transfer they could end up leaning on to get them there:
High School Career: Athens High School (The Plains, OH)
To put it simply, Joe Burrow was on another level in high school. The 4-star recruit and Ohio’s Mr. Football led his Athens team to three straight playoff appearances and won a total of 7 playoff games during that span, which at the time were the first wins in school history. The 2013 Gatorade Player of the Year would finish his high school career with a stat line of 11,400 passing yards and 157 touchdowns, along with 2,000 rushing yards and 27 rushing touchdowns.
Burrow closed out his high school career by throwing for nearly 4,500 yards with 63 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions. With numbers like these, it is no surprise that Burrow was drawing the attention of the big programs and ended up at a school like Ohio State who seems to always draw in the top talents.
College Career: Ohio State/LSU
There is a reason that Ohio State is one of the country’s top programs and it is because they are absolutely loaded with talent, and with a team like this, there are always going to be players that won’t get the playing time they feel they could be; Joe Burrow was one of those players. After redshirting in 2015 as a true freshman, in his redshirt freshman year in 2016, he served primarily as JT Barret’s backup and saw action in only six games. In those games, however, Burrow managed to connect 22 of 28 passes for 226 yards and a couple of touchdowns. He also added in 58 rushing yards and a rushing TD.
His 2017 sophomore season was much of the same, playing in only four games and passing for just 61 yards. Burrow constantly impressed coaches throughout his time at Ohio State, but was never able to climb to the top of the depth chart, in part due to injuries, and in part due to the team simply having a plethora of talent at the position.
Now finding himself at LSU where the quarterback position is by no means locked up, it will be interesting to see who Coach Orgeron has under center for week one.