Alabama's quarterback race has been the most discussed and prominent position battle of this off-season. Adding to the high stakes between Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa is the possibility that the loser will elect to transfer.
Tagovailoa entered the off-season as the likely favorite after his performance in the national title game. However, a hand injury limited his availability this spring, and left Hurts with an opportunity to take the bulk of reps.
Hurts couldn't take full advantage of this chance as he struggled during the program's annual spring game and left many thinking the job will eventually belong to Tagovailoa. However, one ESPN analyst is betting on the rising junior to regain his starting spot.
Booger McFarland appeared on The Paul Finebaum Show today with Peter Burns and maintained his prediction that Hurts will begin the season as QB1.
"I’ve gone on record after the championship game and I’ll go on record again,” McFarland said. “I think when Alabama takes the first snap this season, I think it will be Jalen Hurts.”
“Fans are going to get all up in arms about what they see on the good side. Hurts is still in the competition. Tua is a little more flashy but Jalen is still consistent. It doesn’t matter if you score running or passing, the name of the game is scoring points, and Jalen has been able to do that successfully the past two years.”
You can listen to the full interview with McFarland here.
It is unlikely that Nick Saban will name a winner in this race until late in the summer. He doesn't want to lose a player to transfer early.
Our money is still on Tua's talent winning out, even if Booger disagrees. You can't discount his ability to throw the ball better than Hurts, making Alabama's attack more diverse and explosive.