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Hip injury ends Tagovailoa’s season

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Alabama QB set to have surgery today

By PAUL JONES

The Associated Press

STARKVILLE, Miss. — What was planned to be the last series of the day for Tua Tagovailoa ended in the final play of his season — and maybe his Alabama career.

The Crimson Tide’s star quarterback will miss the rest of the season after dislocating his right hip in the first half of No. 4 Alabama’s 38-7 victory over Mississippi State on Saturday.

Tagovailoa, the potential top pick in April’s NFL draft, was injured while being dragged down by two Bulldogs late in the first half, with the Tide up four touchdowns. The Saint Louis School alum was flown by helicopter to the St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Birmingham, Ala. Hours later the school announced he had sustained a dislocated right hip.

“He is undergoing further testing to determine the best course of treatment,” Alabama team orthopedic surgeon Lyle Cain said in a statement. “He is expected to make a full recovery but will miss the remainder of the season.”

On Sunday, Cain announced that the quarterback is scheduled to have surgery today while reiterating he expects Tagovailoa to make a full recovery. Earlier in the day, defensive linemen Phidarian Mathis and Raekwon Davis posted a picture with a smiling Tagovailoa in his hospital bed.

Tagovailoa had been nursing an ankle injury and Alabama was considering holding him out of Saturday’s game. The junior needed surgery four weeks ago for a high ankle sprain on his right leg that caused him to miss a game and a half.

Alabama coach Nick Saban said the plan was to remove Tagovailoa from the game before the series when the quarterback was injury. Alabama was leading 35-7, but it was decided to let Tagovailoa play one more possession to get some work in the two-minute drill.

“We can second guess ourselves all we want,” Saban said. “We told Mac (Jones) to warm up and we were going to go 2-minute before the half. Tua wanted to play in the game and so I don’t really make a lot of decisions worrying if a guy is going to get hurt.”

Tagovailoa was 14 of 18 for 256 yards and two touchdown passes against Mississippi State, giving him 31 TD passes on the season. He was replaced by Jones, who went 7 for 11 for 94 yards.

“Thank you all for the prayers and well wishes,” Tagovailoa posted on Twitter. “God always has a plan.”