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Nick Saban updates Tua Tagovailoa and Will Reichard, talks UA’s defense and Ty Perine

This was a tough cigar to get for Alabama. 

Despite earning a 35-13 win, the University of Tennessee gave the Crimson Tide all it could handle and more at Bryant-Denny Stadium. After the game, Nick Saban spoke to reporters on how he was pleased with the toughness of the Tide and it was able to grind out a victory. 

Fans witnessed a huge scare in the second quarter, when Tua Tagovailoa left the game with an ankle injury.

He did not return to action, which forced Mac Jones into the action. According to Saban, the junior quarterback is expected to at least miss next week versus Arkansas. 

RELATED: Alabama survives Tennessee, improves to 7-0

“He has a twisted ankle. We don’t know the extent of it, but he’ll probably be out for a week,” Saban said on Tagovailoa.  

In terms of Jones running the offense next week, Saban said he and the team have ‘full confidence’ in him. Slade Bolden, a freshman receiver, said Jones has been waiting for this moment and he the ‘definition of hard work.’ Bolden, a former high school quarterback in Louisiana, accounted for the lone touchdown pass of the game – a 6-yard score to Miller Forristall. 

While improvements still need to be made on defense, the Tide has officially found its punter in freshman walk-on, Ty Perine. He averaged 45.6 yards per punt on two attempts – including one that traveled 51 yards. A native of Prattville, Ala., teammates were excited about him getting a chance with Skyler DeLong struggling and Will Reichard still dealing with a hip flexor. 

Saban said Perine punted the ball ‘really well’ against the Volunteers. 

Alabama will return to practice on Monday. 

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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.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 10+ years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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