Since his suspension from the LSU football program last Friday for violating team policy, Tyrann Mathieu has been tweeting redemptive messages.
But his hopes of redemption as a member of the Tigers football squad in the future appear to be dashed. At least, that's how it first appeared on Monday.
ESPN's Joe Schad said Monday morning that Mathieu was considering remaining at LSU, sitting out a season and returning to play football for the Tigers in 2013. Schad made the comment on ESPN Radio's "The Herd," with Colin Cowherd.
Schad reported later Monday afternoon on Twitter that an LSU spokesman indicated Mathieu is welcome to return to school as a student but is "permanently ineligible" for the football team. In a report by Glenn Guilbeau of Gannett Louisiana, LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva is quoted from Friday as confirming that the former St. Augustine High School standout will not play for the Tigers again.
"The policy is a written policy," Alleva said. "Being an athlete is a privilege. And you have to follow the rules to take advantage of that privilege. Unfortunately, he doesn't have that privilege here anymore. I don't like it when an opportunity is taken away. And right now at LSU, his opportunity is taken away for good."
Yet, Associate Athletic Director Herb Vincent refuted the Guilbeau report on Monday evening, tweeting that "LSU is not speculating on (Mathieu's) football future."
The New Orleans native has entertained the possibility of transferring to McNeese State to play immediately and weighed other options. Schad has multiple sources who tell him Mathieu wants to return to LSU and play football.
A finalist for the Heisman Trophy and the nation's top defensive player in 2011, Mathieu played in 26 games for LSU from 2010 through 2011. He recorded 133 total tackles, including 16 for loss, along with four interceptions. He also forced 11 fumbles, which ranks first in school history and seventh in NCAA history, to go with eight fumble recoveries.
An accomplished kick returner, Mathieu scored four touchdowns for the Tigers, two on punt returns and two on fumble returns.
Schad reports Tuesday that the Mathieu family is "taking the time to heal" and do not expect to make an announcement on his football future on Wednesday.
"Mathieu will not be on this football (team) this year -- I guarantee it. That's a fact. I have no idea beyond that," LSU head coach Les Miles was quoted by Schad as saying Tuesday.
The watch continues on where the Honey Badger will end up next.
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