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LSU's Jeremy Hill reinstated, begins practice immediately

By Jerry Hinnen | College Football Writer

LSU leading rusher Jeremy Hill was reinstated to to the football team on Monday after a judge extended his probation and did not order him back to jail.

Tigers coach Les Miles said Hill will face "internal" punishment, but the sophomore running back was allowed to begin practice immediately. It is still possible that Hill could miss time as a result of his recent legal troubles, but Miles declined to say how many, if any, games would be added to his punishment.

Check out video of Miles addressing the situation below, courtesy of NOLA.com.

According to Miles, Hill's reinstatement came as a result of a team vote on Monday afternoon. With the backing of his teammates, Hill pledged to be a better teammate and apologized for the "poor choice" that almost cost him the 2013 season.

The reinstatement process took place just hours after State District Judge Bonnie Jackson ordered Hill to perform 40 hours of community service and renewed restrictions on his probation, ones imposed after Hill's guilty plea to battery charges from an April incident in which he punched a man at a Baton Rouge bar. But she also agreed to curfew flexibility that allowed him to take part in team activities.

The April arrest violated the terms of Hill's existing probation from his guilty plea to carnal knowledge of a juvenile during his time as a high school student. Prosecutors had asked for Hill's probation to be revoked, which would have sent him back to jail.

But while admonishing Hill over the "arrogance" he showed on a video of the April incident -- in which Hill laughs after delivering a blow that sent the victim to the hospital -- Jackson also said she understands that (in the AP's paraphrase) young people make mistakes.

Hill said that he "let my emotions get the best of me" at the April incident and was "terribly sorry."

Hill's Monday hearing was originally scheduled for Aug. 16 before a request from Hill's attorney, Marci Blaize, to move it forward to Aug. 5. Blaize denied that the rescheduling was in response to the Tigers' practice schedule, saying she had a scheduling conflict with the Aug. 16 date and adding that her primary goal was to keep Hill enrolled at LSU and registered for classes.

Jackson had initially established a 9 p.m.-to-6 a.m. curfew for Hill's probation, but at Hill's guilty plea in July, District Judge Michael Erwin ruled that exceptions could be made if Hill was reinstated to the football team. Jackson agreed to those exceptions in her ruling Monday.

As a freshman in 2012, Hill burst onto the scene late in the season and led the Tigers in rushing with 755 yards and 12 touchdowns.

CBSSports.com's Chip Patterson contributed to this report.

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