Alabama football: Tua Tagovailoa suffers injury on first day of spring practice

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football is already dealing with injuries just one day into spring practice as Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban announced that quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered an injury on Tuesday.

“Tua hurt his thumb [Tuesday] in practice,” Saban said. “We’re taking him to Birmingham to get him evaluated. It’s probably going to require some time for him to get back. I don’t want to speculate on what the injury might be, but most of the time when these type things happen, it takes a little while for them to come back.”

Tagovailoa came into the game in the second half to help lead an Alabama comeback against Georgia in the National Championship Game. He was named Offensive MVP after completing 14 of 24 passes for 166 yards and 3 touchdowns. He added 27 yards rushing.

“I think in a few days, Tua will probably be able to do some things,” Saban said. “But when you hurt your thumb on your throwing hand, it’s kind of hard to grip the ball. I think that’s going to be the issue — whether he’s able to throw it.”

Tagovailoa, who is entering his sophomore season, and junior Jalen Hurts were expected to compete for the starting job, but it’s unclear how this injury will change that competition. Hurts played a key role in getting Alabama to the title game.

Saban wasn’t ready to say either player has an edge over the other.

“He and Jalen were splitting reps,” Saban said. “We’re giving both guys an opportunity to see how they compete and how they do. We don’t have any decisions. We’re not speculating on any decisions. We’re just going to be fair and honest in terms of how we give both players a chance to compete.”

Alabama’s A-Day spring game is scheduled for April 21 and will be televised on ESPN.

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