Mathieu’s future was in turmoil. He had a collection of schools interested in him transferring there. Almost every program in the country could use the dynamic skill set of the so-called “Honey Badger.” But instead of moving to another school, Mathieu entered a drug rehabilitation program in Houston run by former NBA player John Lucas.
When he completed the program, Mathieu re-enrolled for classes at LSU, surprising many. When LSU coach Les Miles spoke, he would not commit to one of his best players returning to the squad next year.
Now, while not totally making a reversal, Miles did say on ESPN radio that
Coach Les Miles said at the time that there was no guaranteed Mathieu would be reinstated. Now, while he has not made a commitment, Miles did not rule it out. Sort of.
“I think that this is a very legitimate chance that he would have a happy ending,” he said. “I think the point of degree, and the point of handling your business and making sure everything is right and correct, and getting your feet on the ground — I think that that is a tremendously happy ending.”
Typical of Miles, you can surmise whatever you like out of his sometimes aimless rantings. But it would stand to reason that if Mathieu avoids troubles, passes drug tests and goes to class, he would be reinstated by the team. Why else would he stay and not resume his career with NFL plastered all over it?
Obviously, re-adding an athlete of Mathieu’s caliber would be a huge boost to the 2013 Tigers, particularly with junior defensive backs like safety Eric Reid and Tharold Simon potential NFL Draft flight risks.