Joel Klatt explains why LSU cracked his preseason top 15

The 2024 season is shaping up to be one of quite a bit of change in Baton Rouge.

Heisman-winner Jayden Daniels is gone, as are his top two receivers in Malik Nabers and Brian Thomas Jr. The Tigers lost some key players along the defensive line, and they have new coordinators on both sides of the ball.

In spite of that, there’s some optimism with this team. And while it won’t begin the year in the top five like it did last season, Joel Klatt included them in the top 15 of his preseason rankings. Here’s his explanation for why he ranked LSU at No. 14.

“This is a bit of Brian Kelly trust,” Klatt said. “They’ve got to replace a ton of talent in Jayden Daniels, Malik Nabers, Brian Thomas. Garrett Nussmeier’s going to be at QB, they lost their OC Mike Denbrock to Notre Dame, so we’ll see how that goes. And again, Brian Kelly has been good everywhere he’s been, and this is a bit of trust in Brian Kelly at LSU at 14.”

Kelly won 10 games in each of his first two seasons in Baton Rouge, but the results didn’t quite fall in line with the program’s expectations, either. He will try to take that next step in 2024, but the losses this offseason won’t make that easy.

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Story originally appeared on LSU Tigers Wire