Les Miles confirmed at his Tuesday media luncheon that the erstwhile "Honey Badger" has enrolled in classes at LSU for the fall semester, where he will be paying his own way. Miles declined to discuss Mathieu's football future, saying only that he had "made some really difficult decisions" and was now "making some quality decisions for himself."
Mathieu spoke briefly to the LSU student newspaper the Reveille Tuesday, saying he was focusing on "the self" over "the athlete."
"I'm just focusing on academics right now and really myself," Mathieu said. "I'm not worried too much about football."
Mathieu left Baton Rouge after being dismissed from the team Aug. 10 for reportedly failing a drug test. As recently as mid-August was in a drug rehabilitation center in Houston run by former NBA star John Lucas.
Mathieu's decision was first reported by local TV anchor Jen Hale of WVUE Fox 8 New Orleans. She reported that Mathieu has already returned to Baton Rouge after his stay in Houston.
What Mathieu's future plans are following what appears to be a full academic year on campus are uncertain. He could attempt to rejoin the LSU football team in 2013, or he could test April's NFL Draft waters, where his stock is damaged but teams will no doubt exercise an interest after his All-American 2011 season.
CBSSports.com's Rob Rang wrote in August that Mathieu's decision to enter rehab would be seen as a "mature" decision by NFL executives. "I think it is the smart move," one told Rang. Mathieu is currently the No. 3-ranked corner in the 2014 Draft according to NFLDraftScout.com.
Mathieu had spoken to coaches at nearby FCS McNeese State in the immediate wake of his dismissal from LSU, but eventually decided against trying to play football in 2012. The Cowboys seem like they'll be all right without him; they defeated FBS Middle Tennessee State Saturday 27-23 and are currently ranked in the FCS top 25.
Miles added that he and LSU wished Mathieu the best, but that he was concentrating on the Tigers' upcoming home game against Washington.
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.