ESPN analyst wouldn’t be surprised to see Lincoln Riley to LSU

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Let the speculation continue.

One name that has been linked to the LSU job, no pun intended, is Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley. The name was brought up by both Brody Miller of the Athletic and Adam Rittenberg of ESPN. However, it is another analyst from the worldwide leader in sports that believes that Riley could really be in play.

There’s something going on at Oklahoma right now and I would not be surprised one bit if the next LSU coach is Lincoln Riley. – Tom Luginbill on SiriusXM Radio

Responding to his quote on Twitter, Luginbill stated that this isn’t source-based. His response when asked about this being from an inside source, “Never claimed to. My own gut. Would make sense for both parties in my mind.”

Apart from this being pure speculation at this point, does Riley to LSU make any sense? Is Riley a splash hire and an established head coach? Yes. Outside of Clemson, Ohio State, and Alabama, Riley is the only other head coach to make multiple trips to the College Football Playoffs.

The money would be a huge factor, not in terms of his pay but the buyout from his Oklahoma contract. According to the USA TODAY Sports database, his buyout is $25.2 million. That puts the number at over $40 million to buy out the Ed Orgeron contract and Riley’s contract. All of which comes before they even pay Riley on his LSU contract. Currently, the Oklahoma head coach is getting paid $7.6 million which falls $1.4 million short of what Orgeron was set to make in 2021.

Would I be surprised to see Riley head to LSU? A little bit considering that the Sooners are set to join the SEC. However, in Baton Rouge, he would have unlimited resources and no in-state competition for Louisiana talent.

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What industry experts are saying about the LSU head coaching search

It remains to be seen if there is anything to this story but Riley’s name keeps getting brought up which begs the question, is this more misdirection?