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One Alabama Quarterback Reportedly Dominated The Position Battle Today

Jalen Hurts of the Alabama Crimson Tide and Tua Tagovailoa #13 celebrate after winning the AllState Sugar Bowl against the Clemson Tigers.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 01: Jalen Hurts #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide and Tua Tagovailoa #13 celebrate after winning the AllState Sugar Bowl against the Clemson Tigers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 1, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Nick Saban has the blessing of two quarterbacks that he knows can win him a giant game. Unfortunately, that also means the headache of dealing with a Jalen Hurts-Tua Tagovailoa quarterback battle.

Saban clearly doesn't love everything about the situation. At SEC Media Days, he chastised the gathered reporters for "creating" the controversy.

Of course, no reporter created the controversy. Saban did that himself with his bold move at halftime of last year's national championship. It wound up being one of the best moves he's made during a storied coaching career, even if it has led to some headaches over the last few months.

Most assume Tagovailoa, the rising sophomore who came in in relief of Hurts in that game and led the Crimson Tide to a national championship, will get the nod.

It isn't easy to ignore Hurts' resume, though. He has taken Alabama to two-straight title games, and is a dynamic athlete at the position.

Based on reports, it sounds like today was a major step forward in the Tua Tagovailoa-Jalen Hurts Alabama quarterback battle.

Reporters were not permitted to watch Alabama scrimmage today. However, word got out about how both quarterbacks performed, and based on what those on hand saw, Tua won the day.

From AL.com's Matt Zenitz:

Word is that Tagovailoa threw at least three touchdowns with no interceptions while Hurts had three interceptions and didn't account for any touchdowns.

The first Tagovailoa touchdown was more so a great play from sophomore wide receiver Jerry Jeudy, who put a great move on one of Alabama's defensive backs and then outran other defensive players to the end zone after catching a short pass.

There were at least two more Tagovailoa touchdowns later on, though -- one of about 20 yards to redshirt freshman receiver Tyrell Shavers and the one to No. 44, sophomore tight end Kedrick James.

Zenitz also cited this tweet from former Crimson Tide defensive back Will Lowery, who backs up what he heard about the difference.

The word is out there, but Saban is sticking to the script.

"We're going to evaluate the quarterback situation," Tide coach Nick Saban said. "We're going to keep looking at the guys. What somebody did today or didn't do today is not going to win or lose him the job, aight. It's going to be a cumulative effect and the consistency that they practice with and play with the whole time. And that's in fairness to both players, who are really good competitors and really working hard and really doing a good job. So we don't have much more to say than that."

As Lowery tweeted, it seems unlikely that Saban will make a call before Week 1. He's had a few recent seasons where he entered the season without quarterback settled, including 2016, when Blake Barnett started Week 1, before ceding the job to Hurts during the opener against USC.

Ultimately, Tagovailoa has to be the heavy, heavy favorite based on everything we've heard.

[AL.com]