Alabama RB TJ Yeldon Suspended 1 Quarter for Throat-Slash Gesture vs. Texas A&M
Alabama Crimson Tide star running back T.J. Yeldon has been suspended for the first quarter of Saturday's game against Colorado State for a throat-slashing gesture he made in last week's win over Texas A&M.
Marquavius Burnett of The Anniston Star reported the news on Friday, citing a source with knowledge of the situation.
The action came under scrutiny when Yeldon scored on a four-yard run to put the Tide up, 28-14, just before halftime of the 49-42 victory in College Station.
Head coach Nick Saban was visibly displeased with Yeldon's antics, which cost Alabama a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
Yeldon, a sophomore who's run for 224 yards and two touchdowns in 2013, seemed to sincerely regret what he had done in an apology he issued on Monday, per AL.com's Andrew Gribble:
I want to apologize to everyone for my selfish actions on Saturday. That is not the way I want to represent myself, my family and our team. That is not the way we do things at Alabama. This is something that I will learn from, and I will use better judgment in the future.
It was succinct but effective in getting the message across, as Saban's no-nonsense approach to the game certainly won't condone behavior of that caliber.
Manziel is known for his competitive fire on the field, and according to Cecil Hurt of The Tuscaloosa News, Saban had specifically instructed his players not to galvanize the opposing team or the raucous Texas A&M crowd:
Re: Yeldon. Saban was clearly still miffed last night about players gesturing vs A&M "when they were specifically told not to do it."— Cecil Hurt (@CecilHurt) September 20, 2013
Did T.J. Yeldon's actions warrant a suspension?
It's not as though the Tide are in any real danger of losing this game against the Rams, especially in the friendly confines of Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Alabama enters as 39-point favorites, according to Bovada, so Yeldon's absence for the first 15 minutes won't have too much of an impact.
Veteran quarterback AJ McCarron can steer the ship offensively until his top runner's return, while Kenyan Drake and Jalston Fowler should be chief among the deep Tide backfield who shoulder the workload in brief relief.
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