LSU Twitter

To those of a certain age (Jurassic) LSU's latest football dilemma is a bit mystifying.

To those of another age (millennial, mostly) it is a full-blown program crisis.

But suddenly, as if the national champion Tigers didn't have enough challenges with replacing 14 NFL draft picks, along comes the biggie.

In the modern vernacular (Twitter) this is what is usually known as a "BOOM!!!" moment, decidedly worthy of all caps and sometimes multiple exclamation points.

But brace yourself, Tigers.

Now LSU is going to need another Hype Master.

And the social media branch of the fan base is reaching for the smelling salts.

Joe Brady leaves for the Carolina Panthers, Ed Orgeron reaches for the file in his top drawer. Dave Aranda takes the Baylor head job? Orgeron makes a few phone calls.

But this?

BOOM!!!!!

Will Stout has left the LSU football operations building.

Whatcha going to do now? the other SEC fan bases seem to be singing in gleeful harmony.

It could be a problem, for sure.

In the hyper-competitive world of hype videos, poaching is becoming more and more of a problem.

The University of Southern California had a bargaining chip LSU couldn't match for a big-name videographer — namely, Hollywood right on its back porch.

"I told myself many, many years ago, as far back as I can remember, that I would end up in Los Angeles one day," Stout, a Baton Rouge native, said via Twitter. "It's always been my dream, and it's something that I've always looked forward to and worked for."

How far back Stout can remember is open for debate.

Another perk USC offered was the promise that he could finish his education even while upping the Trojans' hype game.

Wait, what?

Yes, he recently finished his junior year at LSU and can hype up the Trojans between classes to finish his degree requirements.

Who knew NCAA student videographers had a transfer portal?

But maybe Stout is apparently the Joe Brady of wunderkind college hype video producers.

He has enough clout in the industry to make it a package deal, as his LSU colleague, Jacob Brown, will go to USC as director of football video production.

Or, who knows? Maybe Stout is an old vet.

For sure, it's a cutthroat business.

Check the underbelly of the hype-video industry, and it's possible it looks like a lot of American households, where dad is constantly calling his 14-year-old over the make this foul computer machine work right.

"This is worse than losing Aranda and Brady," one presumably young LSU fan posted on social media.

It's also either a new college football development … or I maybe was just late to this party.

But, as I now understand it, LSU's remarkable offensive metamorphosis last year was really just a matter of the Tigers catching up to its Department of Hype & Social Media.

LSU finally had a football team that the Hype Drop could be proud of.

"I think a case can be made that these losses are as big as losing an on-field coach," another chimed in.

I guess it first came to my attention before LSU's second game last season.

That's when I learned that the Tigers didn't even need to go to Austin. When LSU's hype video was "dropped" on the Thursday before the Texas game, it was so startling and perfect that LSU had already won.

BOOM! Game over.

The 45-38 final, even third-and-17, was just icing on the cake — the fan taunting began before the Tigers even left Baton Rouge.

It turns out LSU's Hype Videos, along with is social media dominance, have long been the envy of college football.

But last year, those of a certain age, not mine, were soon looking forward to the Thursday Hype Drop as much or more than the kickoff.

As I understand it, once the hype videos were dropped, Bama had to know its streak was over, Georgia knew it was wasting its time in the SEC championship game, Oklahoma was already bracing for a 49-point LSU first half and Clemson might as well not have shown up for the national championship game.

But now it's back to square one for the Tigers.

It's possible rest of the SEC can breathe a sigh of relief and relish a level playing field.

This is no laughing matter.

"The amount LSU's social media team kicked (butt) and went viral constantly and made LSU ‘cool' is vital for recruiting in this day and age," was another Twitter reaction to Stout's departure.

Others have cautioned that the hype videos were team efforts and LSU will no doubt adopt a next-man-up philosophy to keep the hype coming.

But somebody ­— probably somebody really young — is about to feel the pressure Myles Brennan will know in trying to replace Joe Burrow.


Scooter Hobbs covers LSU athletics. Email him at shobbs@americanpress.com

More from this section

On the odd chance that the NCAA is paying attention — admittedly, a long shot considering the subject is baseball — the college game could turn Major League Baseball's current follies into a big plus.