LSU dismisses the Honey Badger

LSU head coach Les Miles has dismissed the famed Honey Badger from the football team for violation of school and team rules.

Tyrann Mathieu electrified the game of college football last season, becoming a Heisman Trophy finalist on his way to helping LSU to a 13-0 record and BCS title game appearance.

Miles would not specify the reason Mathieu was kicked off the team. When asked if it was a team rule or a school rule, the “Mad Hatter” replied “Both.” He said it was not a legal issue.

Mathieu served a one game suspension last season for failing a drug test, later said to be for the use of synthetic marijuana.

The Honey Badger gained his name and fame for being able to take the ball away, seemingly at will, from the opposition. That notion came crashing down in the BCS Championship Game however when Kevin Norwood, a reserve Alabama wide receiver, used him like a roll of toilet paper, going over top of him for multiple catches on his way to a career best game.

Bama fans most remember Mathieu for the cheap shot he delivered to former Alabama cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick in the first Bama-LSU matchup in Bryant-Denny Stadium. As the seconds ticked down in regulation, Kirkpatrick covered a punt, became tangled up with Mathieu, then received Mathieu’s fist in his throat. Cameras caught the whole transaction, but like the old WWF referees, the officials missed the whole thing. That one play personified LSU football for Alabama fans, making the 21-0 bludgeoning that came later in the season that much sweeter.

How important was the Mathieu to his team? He was an elusive punt returner and a pesky defender. But maybe more importantly, he was the face of the LSU defense, and maybe the program itself, on the way to one of the most dominate seasons in LSU history.

Matheiu personified LSU football, and in turn, the fanbase endeared itself to him. So how big is his loss? I’m torn somewhere between monumental and huge. The Tigers have depth, but gone is Maurice Claiborne, who allowed Matheiu to move around in nickel coverage while opposing quarterbacks avoided the All-American.

With Matheiu and Claiborne now both gone, the LSU secondary just got a little more suspect. There is still plenty of talent to go around, but the loss of the Honey Badger is similar to the void left by Javier Arenas at Alabama. There are other bodies, sure. But a punt returner and relentless defender in the same body don’t come around very often.

As for what’s next for Mathieu, we may see him enroll at a lower tier school, transfer to another division I program, or (most likely) see him declare for the NFL draft next spring.

Still, this is just another case where a player who has it all throws it all away because he can’t control his demons. It’s sad. But it couldn’t have happend to a bigger…or littler…jerk.

With the loss, at this hour it’s not clear if Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson, Tim Brando or Brent Musberger, who all loved to say his name, repeatedly…even more than Tebow’s…have found the strength to go on.

But the line in Vegas is that a certain program in the SEC West is scrambling to get another renegade on their team, ordering a pair of hot pants practice shorts for him, just in case.


(Follow me on Twitter for Bama news, commentary and smack.)

10 Comments

Add Yours
  1. 1
    RC

    I do have to say this about Les Miles. HE CARES ABOUT HIS PLAYERS. Just like a caring father will spank and discipline his unruly son, Miles did what was in the best interest of the kid over the school. Nick Saban did the same for Prince Hall and Robby Green. That @s_ clown on the other side of the state. What was his name again? Chistik? He will only kick a player off a team on his way to jail. See the armed robbers and Mike Dyer. None of it was in the interest of the kid, or all of them would have been disciplined before it got out of hand. I’m sure Chette is already hiding the kid in his basement. “Don’t me messin with what the Lawd been blessing.” -Chette Williams

  2. 4
    RC

    The Auburn excuse would then be, “We turned around Cam, we can turn around Tyrann. See, Cam reads Dr. Seuss to all the little children!” THe AU fans would be, “Weagle Weagle Wah Eagle” with a tear coming down their country, redneck faces

  3. 5
    JW

    Bottom line is Miles finally got tire of his shit…He was a all out thug..And Dumbo had to can his ass…Always running his mouth on the field and showing how dirty he was.It could not have happen to a better person.Crimson Tide exposed him in BCS game and showed his ass could be beat like a bitch!!!!!!

  4. 6
    ITK

    Truthfully, I’m not sure how much Miles had to do with the decision, as the university was involved. But I do see Miles as a class guy who would do this if the university didn’t. More than I can say for some teams in the West.

  5. 9
    RC

    Does anyone remember how Chizik ran to the press after The Trailer Park Horror & tried to sound all ‘disciplinarian’ when, in fact, those pieces of crap were kicked out of the University?

    • 10
      ITK

      Chiz probably didn’t know. Afterall, he’s not running the program down there anyway.

      Something tells me Patrick Fain Dye’s liquor cabinet just got refreshed.

Comments are closed.