The state of Indiana is known for it’s basketball, and isn’t a particular hot area for high school football targets. There are some exceptions, of course, and the state has produce some good Quarterbacks over the years. Jeff George, Bob Griese, Rick Mirer, Mike Phipps, Blair Kiel and Rex Grossman are some of the better Quarterbacks that played high school football in the state of Indiana.
In the 2013 football recruiting class, the Purdue Boilermakers signed 4 star Quarterback Danny Etling from Terre Haute, Indiana. He was their top recruit that season.
The 6-2, 220 true freshman, Etling played at Purdue during his first season and threw for 1,690 yards and 10 Touchdowns. Purdue was horrible in 2013 and finished 1-11. Etling got most of the snaps and shared time with senior Rob Henry and another freshman, Austin Appleby.
Austin Appleby was a redshirt freshman from Canton, Ohio and he is now at Florida.
Appleby and Etling split time in 2014, but Purdue didn’t get a lot better finishing with a 3-9 record.
Appleby stuck around for 2015, but Danny Etling transferred to a school with Quarterback problems, He wound up at LSU.
Brandon Harris started every game for LSU in the 2015 season, but the results were mixed. Brandon Harris was ESPN’s 2nd ranked Dual Threat Quarterback in the 2014 recruiting class only behind Deshaun Watson of Clemson.
After sitting out in 2015, Danny Etling went into the Spring in competition with Brandon Harris and former Tiger head coach Les Miles picked Harris.
After a really poor start and a loss against Wisconsin at Lambeau field in Green Bay, the grumblings really began. The favorite player on a lot of teams is the 2nd string Quarterback and that was certainly true in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The change came in game two against Jacksonville State, with Danny Etling taking the job from Brandon Harris. Harris had 1 completion in that game out of 4 attempts. Etling completed a very average 6 out of 14 passes for only 100 yards.
It wasn’t a lot, but it gave LSU fans hope as the Tigers fought off Jacksonville State, 34-13.
Danny Etling took over the job permanently.
The offense was a bit sluggish still as the Tigers beat a very, very bad Mississippi State by only 3 points, 23-20.
Then, the offense was really futile as LSU lost to Auburn, 13-18, and then the Tigers fired long time head coach Les Miles. The LSU fans had had enough of 9-3, 8-5 and 10-3, but mostly they had had enough of not being Alabama. Or, they had had enough of not beating Alabama.
Defensive Line coach Ed Orgeron was named interim head coach and the team perked up instantly. Orgeron had head coaching experience at Ole Miss and at USC. He left the Trojans when he was passed over for the head coaching position by Steve Sarkisian who is already long gone when it was discovered that he coached while drunk.
If you think that driving and drinking is bad, and it is, then drinking and coaching is also bad. How about
drinking and writing on blogs? Nah, I rarely touch the stuff.
The defense was always pretty solid, but the offense perked up immediately under Orgeron.
They beat Missouri, Southern Miss and Ole Miss while averaging over 41 points per game. They had averaged 21 points per game under Miles. Of course, stats can always be not a truthful indicator. The Miles led Tigers faced tougher defenses mostly.
They are still basically the same team as they were under Miles. Running the ball with Leonard Fournette and Derrius Guice, with the occasional pass to one of the super talented Wide Receivers or Tight Ends.
Nobody is going to mistake LSU for one of the high scoring offenses in college football like Louisville, Texas Tech, Washington State or any of those schools.
But, this offense just seems to work with Quarterback Danny Etling behind the Center.
Etling’s stats are not going to amaze anyone. So far, he has thrown 147 passes and completed 89 of them for 1,129 yards and 7 Touchdowns. He also has thrown 3 Interceptions.
Etling is not a dual threat Quarterback, but he has managed to keep his rushing total over negative yardage like some drop back passers. He actually has 47 rushing yards and a Touchdown.
In 2 seasons as one of the Quarterbacks at Purdue, his teams won 4 games. He has been eligible at LSU for 7 games and he has played in 6 of them. The Tigers have won more games during his 6 games than they did in two years at Purdue.
Danny Etling has another year of eligibility remaining at LSU and you just have to be happy for the guy.