Tua Tagovailoa Leaves 2018 SEC Championship vs. Georgia with Ankle Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 2, 2018

Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) warms up before an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Gerald Herbert/Associated Press

The Alabama Crimson Tide have largely cruised through the 2018 college football season, but their championship aspirations may have hit a snag after quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered an ankle injury in the fourth quarter of Saturday's SEC Championship Game against Georgia.

Tagovailoa departed after his ankle was stepped on by offensive lineman Jonah Williams. The sophomore laid on the turf for over a minute as trainers examined his leg.

After the game, head coach Nick Saban provided an update on his quarterback, per John Talty of AL.com:

"Tua actually sprained his ankle in the first half. He came back and played. The other injury he got stepped on -- his foot -- which I don't think is significant. We are going to evaluate his ankle tomorrow but I don't think it is something that would keep him out. Maybe for a little while but we probably won't practice for a couple weeks anyway. We'll know more about that tomorrow."

Tua dealt with a knee injury earlier this season but has remained on the field as the driving force for the defending champions. He entered Saturday as the Heisman Trophy front-runner with 3,189 passing yards and 36 passing touchdowns to go along with 211 rushing yards and five scores on the ground.

Tagovailoa first burst onto the national scene when he entered last season's CFP National Championship Game after halftime and directed Alabama to a comeback win over the Georgia Bulldogs.

He is a primary reason Alabama looks like a championship contender yet again, but the team may need to rely on Jalen Hurts if this injury proves to be serious.

Hurts gives the Crimson Tide a fallback option most teams don't have, seeing how he helped lead them to the College Football Playoff in each of the last two seasons as the primary quarterback. He is a dual-threat playmaker who tallied 2,081 passing yards, 855 rushing yards and 25 total touchdowns during the 2017 campaign.

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