Getty Images

When LSU opens the season with a marquee showdown against Florida State on Sunday, Sept. 4, it will be without one of its top weapons. According to multiple reports, running back John Emery will be suspended for the first two games of the season. Emery was also ineligible for the entire 2021 season due to academic reasons after playing a supporting role at running back during his first two seasons on campus. He is attempting to appeal the suspension, according to The Athletic.

Emery's absence from LSU's Labor Day evening game with the Seminoles to cap college football's opening weekend could put Penn State transfer Noah Cain in the spotlight at running back along with sophomore Armoni Goodwin. Cain ran for 806 yards and 12 touchdowns on 193 carries in three seasons at Penn State, while Goodwin carried 16 times for 65 yards as a freshman for LSU last season.

First-year head coach Brian Kelly said recently that Emery was in good standing with the football program but said couldn't get into the specifics of his running back's situation. 

"Everything that he's done, he's done a good job with us in football," Kelly said. "Anything else that arises is something I can't comment on because of privacy rights."

As a five-star prospect and the No. 11 overall prospect in the Class of 2019, Emery ran for 566 yards and seven touchdowns while also catching 20 passes over the 2019 and 2020 seasons while playing behind stars such as Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Ty Davis-Price. 

LSU defensive back Raydarious Jones has also been suspended for the entire 2022 season because of academic issues, The Athletic is reporting. Jones has nine career tackles in three seasons.