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LSU running back Jeremy Hill. (Associated Press)

LSU running back Jeremy Hill. (Associated Press)

LSU suspends Hill after arrest; Tigers in discussions to play Wisconsin

Last Modified: Monday, April 29, 2013 7:22 PM

By Scooter Hobbs / American Press

Jeremy Hill, LSU’s leading rusher from last season, has been suspended from the team indefinitely by head coach Les Miles for his part in an off-campus altercation over the weekend.

Miles, who will be in Lake Charles Tuesday night to speak to fans at the Tiger Tour stop at L’Auberge, said in a release from the school that he would not comment further until the matter has played out through the legal system.

Hill was charged with simple battery, a misdemeanor, after the incident which occurred early Saturday morning outside Reggie’s, an off-campus bar.

Police were called after a 20-year-old said he was knocked unconscious.

Meanwhile, East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hillar Moore said that police are looking for a second suspect in the altercation who, based on a clear cell phone video taken during the incident, may be facing more serious battery charges.

Moore told Louisiana Gannett that the unidentified culprit, a white male, struck the blow to the victim’s face that actually knocked him down after Hill had backed off from hitting him in the side of the head.

Hill’s case may be complicated by the fact that he is already serving probation for a guilty plea to carnal knowledge of a juvenile, stemming from an incident while he was still a student at Redemptorist High School in Baton Rouge.

Moore said that just the fact the Hill was arrested would not necessarily be a violation of that probation.

“He is presumed innocent at this point,” Moore said.

As a redshirt freshman last season, Hill came up from a deep stable of running backs to lead the Tigers in rushing with 755 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Hill’s emergence as the Tigers’ go-to back may have influenced juniors Spencer Ware and Michael Ford to give up their senior seasons to enter the NFL draft early. Ware was drafted in the sixth round by Seattle Seahawks. Ford was not drafted, but signed a free agent contract with the Chicago Bears.

LSU still has veterans Alfred Blue, Kenny Hilliard and Terrence Magee at the position.

Tigers, Badgers discussing possible series

BATON ROUGE (AP) -- LSU is having discussions to play Wisconsin in football, but whether or not the Tigers and Badgers square off will be influenced by whether the Southeastern Conference goes to a nine-game conference schedule, Athletic Director Joe Alleva said Saturday.

The games between LSU and Wisconsin would be at neutral sites. Possible venues include Reliant Stadium in Houston; Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas; and historic Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis., home of the Green Bay Packers.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported Friday that Wisconsin would like to play LSU at Lambeau.

Alleva said he isn't interested in playing a game at Lambeau, mentioning instead the two Texas sites.

LSU will open the 2013 season Aug. 31 at Cowboys Stadium against TCU.

The Tigers have yet to play a neutral site game in Houston, the center of the fertile southeast Texas recruiting region and the largest LSU alumni base outside Louisiana. LSU senior associate athletic director Verge Ausberry, who handles football scheduling, has long expressed an interest in playing a neutral site game in Houston.

However, if the SEC goes from its current eight game schedule to nine games, leaving LSU with only three nonconference slots available in its 12-game season, Alleva said the prospect of playing Wisconsin will likely evaporate.

A nine-game conference schedule is one of the major topics expected to grab the spotlight during the SEC Spring Meeting, which will be May 28-31 in Destin, Fla.

Alleva said he isn't a proponent of a nine-game SEC schedule, but would support it if it meant the end of permanent cross-divisional opponents.

Alleva and LSU have fought for the past couple of years to get the SEC to do away with permanent opponents in the name of fairer scheduling. It is expected that next month's Spring Meeting will be the last chance to do so before the SEC locks into a new long-term scheduling format.

"I can be for nine games without permanent partners," Alleva said.

Meanwhile, LSU has announced a third nonconference game for 2014 against the New Mexico State Aggies.

LSU will open the 2014 season Sept. 6 against Louisiana-Monroe, followed by games Sept. 13 against Georgia Southern and Sept. 27 against New Mexico State. All three games will be in Tiger Stadium.

No other games are currently on LSU's 2014 schedule as the school awaits its SEC schedule.

LSU and Wisconsin have met only twice in football, playing a home-and-home series in 1971-72. The Tigers won 38-28 at Madison, Wis., in 1971, then beat the Badgers 27-7 in Tiger Stadium the following year.

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