High above the field at NRG Stadium earlier this week, Brian Kelly watched the remnants of a team that won the national championship two years ago.
Attrition had whittled down the roster to 38 scholarship players for the Texas Bowl, leaving a wide receiver at quarterback. The game got out of hand, and LSU lost 42-20 to Kansas State, ending a disappointing stretch for the program.
Kelly understood what he inherited as the new coach before the game and what he must do now that he has control. LSU has an 11-12 record since the title. As Kelly said in an interview Tuesday night on the ESPN broadcast, it’s his job to keep the team at the top of the Southeastern Conference, not let it fall into a cycle of peaks and valleys.
“This football team won the national title in 2019, and for whatever reason, we’re going to have to get the standards back up to that level,” Kelly said. “That’s why I’m here — to get the standards back to where they were. That’s my job to go to work on that, and I’ve been working on that.”
In the month since Kelly took over, he has recruited and hired most of his staff. The last thing separating LSU from his tenure was the Texas Bowl. Now that the game has ended, the offseason has officially arrived.
So as LSU enters this transformational period, here are 10 questions Kelly and his coaching staff have to address before the 2022 season opener against Florida State.