Jaylen Waddle, Alabama’s star wide receiver, will unfortunately miss the remainder of the season with an injury. The Crimson Tide standout suffered a fractured ankle in the first half of today’s game against Tennessee.
The injury occurred on a kickoff return. Waddle brought the ball out of the end zone and suffered the injury while getting tackled.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban addressed the injury in the second half. He had an interesting comment that is now trending on social media.
“You’re not supposed to bring a ball out when you’re that deep in the end zone but he’s a great player so you have to let him use his judgment,” Saban told CBS Sports.
Nick Saban on Jaylen Waddle's season-ending injury pic.twitter.com/anwK5MPGcA
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) October 24, 2020
Saban was clearly hurting, so you can’t blame him for speaking honestly, but it’s rare to hear a coach say something like that directly after an injury.
It was Saban, after all, who had Waddle returning kicks.
ESPN’s Chris Fowler wonders if that’s a smart thing for college football coaches to do.
“Always a debate: do you risk your best players returning kicks and punts?” the veteran ESPN college football announcer asked.
Sad to see Jaylen Waddle loaded into an ambulance. Had hoped his ankle injury returning the opening kickoff wouldn’t be that serious. CFB and @AlabamaFTBL lose one of its’ most exciting playmakers. Always a debate: do you risk your best players returning kicks and punts?
— Chris Fowler (@cbfowler) October 24, 2020
Unfortunately, the risk did not pay off for Alabama today.
The Crimson Tide lead the Volunteers, 28-10, at the end of the third quarter.
The game is on CBS.