There’s a power struggle happening in Louisiana recruiting, as three announced satellite camps involving Texas have been shut down before they could happen. According to a report by Sports Illustrated college football reporter Pete Thamel, LSU is likely behind the cancellations.
The virtual tug-of-war between two of college football’s blue-blood programs has left high school and small-college coaches like Hal Mumme (Belhaven University) and Mike Roach (Madison Prep) in the middle.
“I guess we let the optics of college football influence the ultimate goal, educating young men and exposing them to a better life,” Roach, who is the father of Longhorns linebacker Malcolm Roach, told Thamel. “The optics of college football has gotten in the way of what the mission of this thing is all about. I don’t have any allegiance to anyone. I have an allegiance to these kids in my community.”
Belhaven was scheduled to host a camp in Baton Rouge on Thursday with Houston, Texas, Cornell (La.) and Belhaven attending, but political pressure forced it to be moved to Hammond, La., and later canceled altogether.
Mumme told Sports Illustrated the canceled camp would cost Division III Belhaven $5,000. Previous announced camps were canceled at Louisiana College and Southeastern Louisiana.
Roach, who initially tried to help facilitate the camp, declined to go into details on what LSU may have done to prevent it from happening, but said “Louisiana home cooking may have played a part in it.”
It makes sense that LSU coach Ed Orgeron wouldn’t want Tom Herman and his staff around Louisiana recruits. The Longhorns have already reached beyond the Texas border for commitments from Oklahoma, California, Florida and Missouri.
However, there could be more at play here. Remember, Texas and LSU waged a recruiting war back in November for Herman. Might these latest moves be aimed at Herman in retaliation for choosing the 40 Acres over the Bayou?
Whatever the motives, it’s clear Texas is not welcome across the Louisiana state line. It will be interesting to see if Texas does anything to retaliate.
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