The LSU Tigers needed a shot in the arm at defensive tackle, and on Monday it appears the NCAA gave them just that. Incoming freshman defensive tackle Travonte Valentine had issues getting clearance, but two weeks in to camp things have changed for him and the Tigers.
According to NOLA.com, Valentine has received his clearance to play from the NCAA clearinghouse. With both Anthony Johnson and Ego Ferguson off to the NFL, having the 6’3″, 325-pound freshman available to play is a big boost to the team.
Just how dominant was Valentine in high school? As a defensive tackle he racked up 85 tackles, 31.5 tackles for loss and 16 sacks, while leading his Miami-area Champagnat Catholic high school to a Florida class 2A championship.
He came in to LSU as a 4-star prospect by the 247Sports composite rankings. He was the No. 65-ranked player in the country and the No. 3-ranked defensive tackle as well as the No. 9-ranked player out of the state of Florida.
Getting Johnson in time for the season opener comes at a great time in fall camp, as NOLA.com also reported that fellow defensive tackle Quentin Thomas sustained a biceps tear this past week.
He’ll have to go through four days without pads, but just having him as another body in drills and getting to work with his talent level will help this team heading towards its season opener against Wisconsin at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.