LSU: Heisman hopeful Mathieu, aka 'Honey Badger,' dismissed for breaking team rules
LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu speaks to the media before the BCS championship in January.
August 10th, 2012
03:10 PM ET

LSU: Heisman hopeful Mathieu, aka 'Honey Badger,' dismissed for breaking team rules

It's been said that Honey Badger don't care, but what may be more accurate is that Honey Badger don't play - at least not for the LSU Tigers.

The team, which played in last year's national college football championship game, announced this afternoon that their top player and arguably the nation's best cornerback, Tyrann Mathieu, has been dismissed for violating team policy.

“This is a very difficult day for our team,” head coach Les Miles said. “We lose a quality person, teammate and contributor to the program. However, with that being said, we have a standard that our players are held to and when that standard is not met, there are consequences."

Miles added, “It’s hard because we all love Tyrann. We will do what we can as coaches, teammates, and friends to get him on a path where he can have success. We are going to miss him.”

LSU did not say which team rule Mathieu broke. The 20-year-old All-American ran into trouble last year when he and two other players violated the team's drug policy. ESPN reported at the time that the trio tested positive for synthetic marijuana.

Mathieu and the others were suspended for their team's game against Auburn.

Despite missing the game, Mathieu was still a finalist for the Heisman Trophy, awarded to college football's best player, as a sophomore. In addition to winning the Chuck Bednarik Award, given to the top defensive player, he came in fifth in Heisman voting with 34 first-place votes and was the only defensive player among 10 finalists.

According to LSU, the Columbus, Ohio, native who attended high school in New Orleans, has registered 133 tackles - 16 for a loss - in 26 games for the Tigers. He also has four picks, 11 forced fumbles and eight fumble recoveries, as well as four touchdowns, two on punt returns and two on fumble returns.

The 5-foot-9, 175-pound Mathieu got his nickname for his fearlessness on the gridiron. Honey badgers are known to scrap with animals many times their size, including lions, and even tangle (successfully) with poisonous snakes.

Said the Dallas Cowboys' Morris Claiborne, a former teammate of Mathieu's: "Tyrann deserved the nickname ... because the honey badger takes what it wants, and Tyrann takes what he wants on the field," ESPN reported today in a profile.

The sports network had to add an editor's note, saying, "This story was published prior to Tyrann Mathieu's dismissal from LSU's football program on August 10."

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Filed under: College football • Football • Louisiana • Sports • U.S.
soundoff (669 Responses)
  1. LakeRat1

    If he's not in jail, he couldn't have done something THAT bad. (Could he?). It sure is different to see a college footbal team screw itself for the sake of a player's (or anybody's) personal integrity.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jimijoni`

    Killing me, LOL !!!

    August 10, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. eroteme

    The point, obviously, is Obama and Travon, when it was reported the 'child' was shot and killed after going to the store to buy candy and had skittles in his pocket. It was later reported that the 'child' was 17, with the skittles in his pocket.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Fast Fred

    He was caught.......hear a pantie raid.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
  5. randy

    Must of smoked to much pot and got busted then again LSU is known for that

    August 10, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Mike

    A lot of people are saying that, if you have rules, you can't exempt the franchise players, and that's true. What seems to get ignored here is that (if it's really about pot, or even "synthetic pot") it's a dumb rule.

    The remit of college sports organizations over their players' private lives is very limited. Keep up with your studies, because otherwise you're not a "student-athlete". Don't cheat; don't use performance-enhancing drugs, don't hurt anybody. Other than that, just win, baby. Legal matters are between you and the law.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Tom in Desoto, TX

    I hear Penn State is looking for players.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
  8. rexdogcanadien

    The hue of skin has anything to with his action. There is good in the worse of us and bad in the best of us. None of us is more good or less evil than the other. Our core values are what steer us along the right path. Race is a social concept and has nothing to do with colour

    August 10, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Husker

    I hope the Huskers get him, Bo will set him straight.

    August 10, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  10. hjs3

    Maybe Night School well help him develop some common sense...Dope

    August 10, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Techpro

    I have mixed feels about this. First, I hope no other school picks him but that some how he continues with his education. This will be a life long lesson for him and it will make him a better person for it. Second, lets celebrate that the lessons from the Pen State scandal have begun to be implemented. This coach did the right thing.

    August 10, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  12. AHines

    The Bengals will draft him they have all the convicts....

    August 10, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  13. ichorrid

    Honey Badger should have got a license. Poor kid...
    What a joke. How's the war on drugs coming along?

    August 10, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mark9988

    He was handed natural talent, given an opportunity others would kill to have, then peed all over it. Nice job.

    August 10, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • John C

      Handed talent ? You dont think the kid worked his ass off to get here ? Give me break ..

      August 10, 2012 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ratickle

    Lane Kiffin would not have dismissed him.

    August 10, 2012 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
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