According the ESPN's Joe Shad
, Mathieu would like to stay at LSU as a student for the 2012-2013 school year, and, if it can be worked out with the school, return to the LSU football team as a player for the 2013 season.
Mathieu was dismissed from the team on Friday. During a press conference
on Friday, LSU head coach Les Miles stated the dismissal was due to a violation of team rules. At that same press conference, MIles was asked by a reporter if the dismissal was permanent. At that time, Miles responded "Yes, he won't be back". In a telephone interview
on Monday, Bo Bahnsen, LSU’s senior associate athletic director for NCAA compliance, said "He's (Mathieu) permanently ineligible to play football at LSU. That’s definite. That's what was said Friday." LSU senior associate athletic director Herb Vincent responded to questions regarding Bahnsen’s comment by saying
"LSU has not changed its position. We're not speculating on his (Mathieu's) football future."
his reasoning for wanting to remain at LSU, saying it is because of the support system he has in place in Baton Rouge. Mathieu is from New Orleans, which is only 80 miles from Baton Rouge, so that may also explain his reasons for wanting to remain in school at LSU. However, if team and athletic officials are sincere in their statements that Mathieu is not eligible to return to the LSU football team, Mathieu's desire to sit out of football for a year and then return, appear to be unrealistic.
The inevitable question arises as to why Mathieu would even discuss the possibly of returning to the LSU football team. Is it simply wishful thinking on his part, or is it perhaps the powers that be at LSU are trying to figure out a way to keep the talented cornerback in Baton Rouge and still save face? It could be months before we know the answer to that question.
Mathieu visited McNeese State over the weekend, and Jackson State and Prairie View A&M have expressed interest in Mathieu. The next few days should prove interesting, and even a bit stressful for LSU fans. Mathieu's talent on the football field has never been in question, and there are probably many fans that would love to somehow see him back on the field in a Tigers uniform. It remains to be seen if that dream will become a reality, or if Mathieu's services as a football player will be seen elsewhere. If he remains as a student at LSU, the question as to whether he will ever play for LSU again will most likely continue. If that is the case, one can only hope it does not become too much of a distraction and shift the focus of the upcoming football season on to Mathieu instead of the accomplishments of the LSU players that are on the field.