Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Les Miles enjoys Tyrann Mathieu's swagger
By Gary Laney
HOOVER, Ala. -- LSU safety Eric Reid said he didn't see the epic Twitter rant of his teammate, Heisman Trophy finalist Tyrann Mathieu, on July 13. When Reid heard about it, however, it didn't faze him.
"That's just Tyrann being Tyrann." Mathieu said Wednesday at SEC media days.
The LSU junior free safety, entering his third season roaming the same Tigers secondary as Mathieu, is clearly used to the Honey Badger's trash-talking. Mathieu, whose 12-tweet tirade came in response to media criticism of his play, has never been afraid to talk on the field either. Reid is usually right there to hear it.
With Twitter, everybody gets a taste of Mathieu's penchant for brashness. That was never more evident than on Friday the 13th.
"I AM THE BEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL," he proclaimed in all-caps glory. The tweet finished by saying "I'm a different breed!"
After came emphatic follows, like "Imma shock the world again this year" and "How bout all you sportswriters label me overrated until you label me the greatest." When he was through, it was 12 tweets of indignation at the notion that he might not be the best.
Reid chuckled at the antics of his secondary mate.
"He's a passionate guy," Reid said. "He loves to play football. It's what he does."
And he gets in Twitter wars with similar passion.
Earlier in the summer, Mathieu got in a Twitter back-and-forth with with Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron, starting when Mathieu suggested that McCarron's role in the Alabama national championship was limited.
Head coach Les Miles addressed Mathieu's social media exchanges, saying Wednesday "Games are not won or lost on Twitter."
It's notable that Mathieu was not one of the three LSU players Miles brought to media days. It's also clear that, while there isn't love for the antics, Miles kind of likes the swagger that is behind them.
"I don't think anybody in America has the kind of confidence Tyrann Mathieu has," Miles said.
Mathieu expressed just that thought on July 13 when he finished his run of Tweets with this thought:
"Self-driven," it said, "but ya'll call it cocky."