The Alabama Crimson Tide had never lost to the Tennessee Volunteers under Nick Saban entering Saturday. That trend held strong in the aftermath of their collision on the
Third Fourth Saturday of October, as the Tide won 48-17 to improve to 5-0 on the year.
That win did not come without a price, though. On the opening kickoff, star wide receiver and return man Jaylen Waddle took the ball out of the end zone. He was promptly taken down by a Tennessee defender and broke his ankle in the process. The prognosis wasn’t good for Waddle, as at the half, Saban told CBS’ Jamie Erdahl that the scintillating Waddle would be out for the remainder of the season.
Alabama is obviously no stranger to dealing with rash injuries to their star players lately. But this one will sting not only for the Tide but for college football as well. Exciting players like Jaylen Waddle don’t come around too often, and given that he’s likely to be a top-flight prospect in next year’s NFL Draft, it is likely that Waddle’s played his last CFB game. That’s a shame, especially in the manner that it all went down.
Nevertheless, the Tide were able to roll impressively anyway. They shut out the Vols in the first and fourth quarters. They held an 18-point advantage at the half after scoring four touchdowns,, two of them going to Najee Harris. Mac Jones also scored on a rushing touchdown, as did Brian Robinson. Harris stood out once again, as he had another rushing touchdown later on. Harris currently has a ridiculous 14 rushing touchdowns through the first five games of the season, an absurd pace that will certainly gain him notoriety.
‘Bama scored their only other touchdown of the game on a fumble recovery and return by Malachi Moore.
Tennessee’s touchdowns came from the arm of Jarrett Guarantano, who tossed long passes to Jalin Hyatt and Josh Palmer. But they were otherwise kept off the board in a bounceback performance for a Tide defense that had been having its fair share of troubles lately. If they keep the clamps on like this in the future though, they will be even tougher to beat than they already are.
Alabama will host the Mississippi State Bulldogs this Saturday, as they seek to move to 6-0. Meanwhile, Tennessee has a bye week this week, a much-needed reprieve after chalking up three losses in a row.