Jones comes to Baton Rouge from the NFL. He spent 2020 coaching the Minnesota Vikings' young defensive backs, after two-season stints with the Cincinnati Bengals and Miami Dolphins in 2018-19 and 2016-17, respectively. It was his last college job that makes Jones an interesting fit for the Tigers.
In 2015, he spent one year coaching under former LSU DC Dave Aranda, when he led the defense at Wisconsin. Aranda would leave for LSU the following season, while Jones jumped to the NFL. Orgeron is clearly looking to recreate the success that Aranda had from 2016-19, before he took the head coaching job at Baylor.
"Daronte is a great addition to our staff," Coach O said in LSU's release about Jones. "We did a lot of research and talked to a lot of coaches including Dave (Aranda) and every person we spoke with raved about his knowledge and passion for the game. He's going to bring tremendous energy to our defense and he will put our players in position to make plays, no matter the situation or scheme."
"Daronte spent a year working with Dave (Aranda) at Wisconsin and he's learned from some of the best in the game during his five years in the NFL and I know that he's going to do a great job with our defense. I'm excited he's going to be an LSU Tiger," Orgeron continued.
Aranda led some of the best defenses in the country during his time at LSU. In 2019, he dealt with some significant injuries, but the team was bolstered by the historic Joe Burrow-led offense, but Aranda's defense played its best when it mattered most, holding Clemson to 394 yards and 25 points in the national championship.
This will be Daronte Jones' first time leading a defense, but if he can recapture some of that magic, it will be a very, very popular hire for LSU football.
Jones also has some solid Louisiana roots. His first college job was coaching safeties at Nicholls State in Louisiana, before a pair of stints at high schools in the state, leading the defenses at Franklin and Jeanerette High Schools. He's also coached at Hawaii, UCLA, Bowie State, and Lenoir-Rhyne, as well as the CFL's Montreal Alouettes.