In the wake of losing star wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase and defensive tackle Tyler Shelvin to select outs in the previous 48 hours, LSU coach Ed Orgeron on Tuesday said there are as yet a few different players who are thinking about whether to play this season.
“There are one or two I know are thinking about it,” Orgeron said. “Hopefully they don’t. But again, if they do, that’s what we’ll live with. But we have depth, and if they do opt out, we’re still going to have a great football team.”
All told, LSU had four players quit. Defensive lineman Neil Farrell and defensive back Kary Vincent informed the team regarding their decisions prior this month.
The Tigers return just five of 22 starters from last season’s championship team.
Orgeron said both Shelvin and Chase, who are projected as conceivable NFL first-round draft picks, had “legitimate reasons” for leaving and that the decision was hard for them two.
“Guys are going to opt out for different reasons,” Oregeron said. “That’s the time we’re living in.”
Orgeron conceded he didn’t want Shelvin to go, yet he respected the decision. He said he advised the 346-pound lineman to remain in shape and “go have a heck of an NFL career.”
During the videoconference with journalists, Orgeron additionally tended to reports that the offensive line was hit particularly hard by COVID-19 testing a week ago. He declined to state precisely what number of players missed practice, in any case.
“There are a couple of guys who get positive, maybe more, but there are some guys who are going to be around them and have to get quarantined just like we did,” Oregeron said. “But it’s good that it happened now and not in the middle of the season.
“It may come up with another unit,” Orgeron added. “We just have to deal with it.”
LSU is planned to open the season Sept. 26 at home against Mississippi State.