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Alabama’s defense, Mac Jones handled WCU in the first half

Butch Dill - USA TODAY Sports

Alabama fans erupted upon seeing Tua Tagovailoa enter Bryant-Denny Stadium on a cart. 

He said he would be supporting his teammates on senior day, and he did that for the Crimson Tide in the first half against Western Carolina.

For the Catamounts, its quarterback – Tyrie Adams – is giving Alabama’s defense a look of what it’ll see in Bo Nix of Auburn. 

He completed seven of 11 passes for 84 yards; however, Xavier McKinney intercepted Adams twice – including once for an 81-yard touchdown.  

RELATED: Some last second thoughts before Alabama takes on Western Carolina

The junior is one of five players with three stops, while forcing a fumble. 

Shane Lee leads the Tide in total tackles (six). Alabama has Christian Harris and Christian Barmore with five tackles, while the group of Jared Mayden, Anfernee Jennings, Tevita Musika and Justin Eboigbe all had three tackles. Jennings and Eboigbe each have one quarterback pressure and Jennings has 1.5 sacks.

Barmore shares a sack with Jennings and Byron Young has a sack as well.

Eboigbe was the latest player to join the sack party late in the second quarter. Alabama ended the first half with four sacks and seven tackles for loss. 

Western Carolina has 97 yards of offense and it has converted once on third down. 

In getting his second start, Mac Jones is holding his own at quarterback. 

He completed nine of 11 passes for 253 yards with three touchdowns.

DeVonta Smith collected Jones’ first scoring toss, putting defenders on skates for a 57-yard race to the end zone. The junior wide receiver has 12 scores this season and 21 for his career. He has 79 yards receiving on three catches. Jaylen Waddle leads the team in receiving yards (101) on three catches with one score. The duo of Jerry Jeudy and John Metchie each have one catch.

Najee Harris brought in Jones’ second touchdown, which was a 12-yard connection. He has a game-high 42 yards rushing on eight carries, and Brian Robinson recorded a 5-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.

Alabama finished the first half with 312 yards of total offense.

The Tide carries a 38-0 lead at halftime and after strong communication in the first half, Nick Saban wants it to continue.  

Western Carolina will open the second half with the ball. 

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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.

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