Dec 28, 2019; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; LSU Tigers defensive back Derek Stingley Jr. (24) during the second half of the 2019 Peach Bowl college football playoff semifinal game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

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LSU expects CB Stingley to return vs. Vanderbilt

LSU All-American cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. returned to practice and is expected to play this weekend after missing the Tigers’ season-opening loss against Mississippi State with a mystery illness.

LSU missed Stingley, whose illness was not COVID related, in a 44-34 upset loss to the Bulldogs on Saturday, but hopes to welcome him this week against Vanderbilt.

“A huge lift for us,” LSU coach Ed Orgeron said Wednesday of Stingley’s potential return. “Derek’s one of our best players. … He’s a force and he’s a difference.”

Stingley’s father, Derek, told a radio station Tuesday that his son “had a reaction to something” and was doing better after the scare.

“It was scary,” Derek Stingley Sr. said. “But it wasn’t as bad as we thought it was when we first got the call and all that. But he’s good to go. I’m pretty sure they’re going to probably take it easy with him this week. But I’m pretty sure he may wind up playing as well.”

As a freshman in 2019, Stingley started all 15 games during LSU’s national championship season. He led the Southeastern Conference and ranked No. 5 in the nation in interceptions (six) and No. 2 nationally in passes defended (21).

Derek Stingley Sr. played baseball in the Philadelphia Phillies’ system before spending nine seasons in the Arena Football League. His father, the late Darryl Stingley, was a wide receiver and first-round draft pick of the New England Patriots in 1973. He was paralyzed in a preseason game in 1978 against the Oakland Raiders.

–Field Level Media

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