LSU LB Michael Divinity reinstated, to play in title game

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LSU linebacker Michael Divinity will return for the College Football Playoff National Championship against the Clemson on Jan. 13 after missing the team’s last six games.

Coach Ed Orgeron said Divinity was reinstated Tuesday morning. The senior left the team on Nov. 4 — before the Tigers’ game against Alabama — for personal reasons, although Orgeron also has referenced eligibility during Divinity’s absence from the field.

“Obviously, Mike has been a tremendous pass-rusher for us,” Orgeron said during a conference call with reporters. “I know we’re definitely going to use him. He’ll be back in a role, what he’s doing, and we’ll see what fits best. He’s definitely going to play for us, and we’ll definitely use him in the best situations we can.”

Divinity, who returned to practice on Nov. 18, also missed two of LSU’s first three games for what Orgeron called “coach’s decisions.”

He has three sacks, a forced fumble and 22 total tackles in five games this season.

Divinity started 11 games in 2018, recording 54 tackles, including 9.5 tackles for loss and five sacks, to go with eight quarterback hurries, an interception, a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.

On Saturday, Divinity tweeted “I’m back. See y’all back in my city on January 13th” after LSU’s win against Oklahoma in the CFP semifinal.

Orgeron on Tuesday also expressed confidence that passing game coordinator Joe Brady would return to LSU in 2020 with an enhanced contract. Brady, who won the Broyles Award as the nation’s top assistant coach, has been mentioned as a potential coordinator candidate in the NFL, where he spent time with the New Orleans Saints before joining LSU earlier this year.

“I do feel that Joe is going to be a Tiger,” Orgeron said. “I feel like everything is just about wrapped up, and I feel good about where we are. You know football, you never can tell what’s going to happen, but I feel confident saying Joe is going to be here with us at LSU. … We’re very close.”

Orgeron also confirmed he received a phone call from President Donald Trump on Monday morning. He said Trump complimented LSU on its season and how the team has rallied the state in recent months.

“They told me the president’s office called, and I thought it was the president of the university,” Orgeron said. “He said, ‘No, the White House.’ I said, ‘OK, here we go.'”

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