Louisiana’s budget crisis has the state’s attention.
It may have also grabbed that of the nation now, too.
In a TV address Thursday night, Gov. John Bel Edwards said that the ongoing budget crisis involving TOPS recipients may cost them their scholarships and LSU its football season.
“If you are a student attending one of these universities, it means that you will receive a grade of incomplete, many students will not be able to graduate and student athletes across the state at those schools will be ineligible to play next semester,” Edwards said.
“That means you can say farewell to college football next fall.”
TOPS, the Taylor Opportunity Program for Students, is a statewide college scholarship program that covers tuition for in-state students that meet certain academic benchmarks.
LSU has more TOPS-eligible students than any other college in Louisiana with about 53 percent of the students using the program, including a number of student-athletes.
The financial issues plaguing Louisiana are an estimated $2 billion and are considered the worst more than three decades.
Edwards has proposed a number of potential solutions.
However, with no imminent fix in sight, LSU may have an even more difficult path to chase than the coveted national championship in 2016.