On his Tuesday appearance on the Scott Van Pelt Show, Les Miles wasn't spelling anything out directly, but his comments will without question spark speculation that the "Honey Badger" will be back in an LSU uniform before he leaves Baton Rouge.
Asked at the end of his appearance if "there is a chance [Mathieu] has a happy ending with the LSU football family," Miles responded in quintessentially Milesian fashion:
"I think that this is a very legitimate chance that he would have a happy ending.
"I think the point of degree, and the point of handling your business and making sure everything is right and correct, and getting your feet on the ground--I think that that is a tremendously happy ending."
Fans can feel free to draw their own conclusions from that, but Times Picayune LSU beat writer Randy Rosetta has his own interpretation:
So if I can decipher Les Miles-ese, and I've gotten pretty good at it, Tyrann Mathieu is on his way back to #LSU in 2013.— Randy Rosetta (@RandyRosetta) October 2, 2012
Obviously, re-adding an athlete of Mathieu's caliber would be a huge boost to the 2013 Tigers, particularly with junior defensive backs like safety Eric Reid and Tharold Simon potential NFL Draft flight risks.
After being dismissed from the Tigers over the summer and spending a brief stay in a drug rehabilitation center, the 2011 Heisman Trophy finalist confirmed to the LSU student paper in September that he had enrolled in fall classes at LSU with an aim towards working towards his degree.