BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A potential run-stuffer and serious space-eater has finally joined the LSU defense again.
Sophomore nose guard Travonte Valentine is finally practicing with the Tigers this week after being dismissed from the LSU squad during the summer of 2015 for breaking team rules.
According to multiple reports, Valentine needs to complete just one more class to be eligible to play this year. Until now, head coach Les Miles hasn't been allowed to speak of the mammoth young man listed at 6-foot-4 and 356 pounds on the roster.
"Very quality defensive player," Miles said about Valentine Thursday morning. "A guy in my opinion gives us reason to trust him as being a quality student and doing the things we ask him to do. We're very optimistic it's exactly the right thing to do."
Between last summer and now, Valentine also played at Western Arizona College but had big issues there too. Valentine was arrested because of a physical altercation and although the charges were d ropped, he was dismissed from the program regardless.
Now LSU hopes Valentine's problems are behind him for good and that new defensive coordinator Dave Aranda has the perfect middle man for his 3-4 alignment. Miles said Valentine is actually around 330 to 336 pounds.
"He's really in pretty good shape. We actually watched him run today and he ran pretty well."
Miles also said that in previous practices before now, Valentine caused big problems for LSU offensive linemen.
"Yeah, we had a difficult time blocking him, period. Wherever you put him, he required a double team. But the double team wasn't very successful."
Valentine will wear No. 55 for the Tigers. LSU will scrimmage Saturday, before Media Day and Fan Day Sunday.