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Alabama’s Tagovailoa to start season opener versus Louisville

Butch Dill - USA TODAY Sports

The decision has been made. 

After a long offseason of avoiding questions and tip-toeing over questions concerning the quarterback position, University of Alabama football head coach Nick Saban seems to officially have his guy. Sophomore Tua Tagovailoa took reps with the first team during warmups and was rumored to be the starter all offseason. Despite Saban mentioning “both players earning the right to play” on Thursday during the Hey Coach show, Tagovailoa took the field for Alabama’s first offensive possession. A native of Hawaii, Tagovailoa played in nine games in 2017, totaling 636 passing yards with 11 touchdowns to two interceptions. 

He won his way into the hearts of Crimson Tide fans with his performance in the College Football Playoff national title against Georgia. Tagovailoa completed 14 of 24 passes in the matchup for 166 yards and three scores – including a 41-yard touchdown pass to receiver Devonta Smith to win the game in overtime.

Despite not practice all spring (hand), Tagovailoa remained the favorite to win the starting job and has the highest odds of any other signal caller to win the Heisman Trophy. The last time Saban announced the night before a season opener was in 2015; the year he named Blake Barnett the starter for the USC game. 

Tagovailoa’s time has come to lead the group. Let’s see what he does. 

Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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