Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne, a rookie from LSU, said he was surprised to learn that former teammate Tyrann Mathieu _ a Heisman Trophy finalist last season _ had been dismissed from the team today for violation of team rules.
Claiborne called Mathieu, a cornerback/punt returner, a close friend and “great guy” but said the Tigers have ample depth in the secondary to make another run at a national championship. Redshirt freshman Jalen Collins is expected to replace Mathieu in LSU’s lineup.
“Obviously, he did something he wasn’t supposed to do. But me knowing Tyrann, he’s a great guy. Sometimes, things just happen,” Claiborne said. “When I first heard it, I was like, ‘What?’ I really was (surprised). We’re losing a good player. I know there are guys behind him who can step up and get the job done as well.”
Asked specifically about Collins, Claiborne said: “Jalen is a good player and he’s growing. That team has got a lot of depth. You saw that last year. Those same guys that are there now are the guys who were going in when we came out or were tired. I know those guys want to pick it up and get the job done.”
Asked if he was disappointed in Mathieu, Claiborne said: ““No. Things happen for a reason. I don’t know what that reason may be. But you’ve just got to know how to bounce back from it and learn from your mistakes.”
_ Jimmy Burch