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Losing the 'Honey Badger' might not hurt LSU's title hopes

August 10, 2012|By Chris Dufresne
  • LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu returns a punt against Northwestern State last season.
LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu returns a punt against Northwestern State… (Gerald Herbert / Associated…)

Louisiana State's quest for this year's national title took a big hit Friday when the school dismissed star cornerback Tyrann Mathieu for violating team policy.

Or will LSU be just fine?

The kid known as "Honey Badger" was an impact player in the secondary but the Tigers still have enough talent to challenge for this year's title.

LSU debuts at No. 1 in the first USA Today coaches poll.

It should be noted Mathieu was a non-factor in his team's 21-0 loss to Alabama in the BCS title game.

LSU also has a habit of shaking off bad news. Last summer, a bar brawl led to the indefinite suspension of quarterback Jordan Jefferson before the start of the season.

LSU responded with a convincing win over Oregon en route to a 13-0 regular season.

Mathieu became an in-season sensation after a video of a real honey badger went viral. Mathieu's sensational SEC title-game performance against Georgia earned him an invite to Heisman Trophy ceremonies, where he finished fifth well back of winner Robert Griffin III.

Mathieu has two years left of eligibility but will have to sit out a season if he transfers to another major college school. He can play immediately if he transfers to a 1-AA program.

If he's willing to wait, how about the "Honey Badger" to Wisconsin?

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