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Tua Tagovailoa of Alabama Crimson Tide expected to fully practice, Nick Saban says

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is expected to participate fully in practice on Monday after aggravating his sprained knee during a win over Missouri this past weekend, coach Nick Saban said.

Tagovailoa, a Heisman Trophy front-runner, originally injured the knee two weeks ago during a win over Arkansas. He wore a protective brace against Missouri, but aggravated the knee while sliding at the end of a run during the third quarter. Afterward, he went to the sideline and was attended to by trainers for several minutes. He did not re-enter the game.

“He could have gone back in the game,” Saban said. “He’s going to practice today. Probably better this week than he was last week. We’ll see how he does in practice and continue to evaluate. As long as the medical staff clears him, we’ll keep working him to try to get him ready to play in the game.”

Tagovailoa, a sophomore, has thrown for 1,760 yards, 21 touchdowns and no interceptions this season. He’s also run for two scores.

In Tagovailoa’s absence, Jalen Hurts completed 7 of 8 passes for 115 yards. The former starter and SEC Offensive Player of the Year has appeared in every game this season, throwing for 568 yards, five touchdowns and one interception.

Starting wideout DeVonta Smith, who strained his hamstring during the win over Missouri, is questionable to play against Tennessee on Saturday. Saban labeled his status as “day-to-day.”

Another starter, defensive lineman Raekwon Davis, could see his playing time affected against Tennessee, Saban said, after Davis threw punches during the win over Missouri.

“I visited with (SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey) about Raekwon’s actions and we will handle that internally,” Saban said. “We will have him do some things. I think it should affect his playing time in the future.”

Alabama travels to Tennessee on Saturday. After an open week, the Crimson Tide will go back on the road to face No. 5 LSU.

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