In one of the most dominating performances of the season for Alabama, there were still a number of teachable moments and quarterback Ty Simpson certainly learned a simple yet crucial one.
After taking over for starting quarterback Jalen Milroe in the second half, Simpson added one of the most explosive plays of the game when he rushed for a 78-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.
But following video review it proved that Simpson had actually dropped the ball early in celebration, prior to crossing the goal line.
Plays like this are exactly the ones that frustrate head coach Nick Saban the most and he shared a quick glimpse of that when he was asked to share his reaction to the play in his postgame press conference.
“I mean, do I have to comment on that?” Saban said.
Although reluctant at first, Saban went on to offer his coaching points to Simpson and the rest of the team as he emphasized ball security.
“I mean, every coach says cross the goal line and hand the ball to the official,” Saban said. “But again, that’s a learning experience for everybody too. But Caleb Downs wasn’t carrying the ball right on his touchdown. He’s carrying it with one hand, swinging it around. Aight? So that’s gonna be a learning experience for him.”
Despite releasing the ball early, Simpson and Alabam caught a break as it retained the football at the one-yard line due to no clear recovery following the fumble. Running back Richard Young would then cap off the drive with a rushing touchdown to extend the Crimson Tide’s lead.
Even with the mistake, Simpson turned in a solid day in relief of Milroe completing 4-of-6 passes for 50 yards to go along with the 78-yard carry.
“I thought Ty played well today,” Saban said. “The opportunity he’s had the last two weeks to play has certainly, probably improved his confidence. It’s good that he gets some experience so if he needs to play, he’s going to go in there and execute.”
It also doesn’t seem like Simpson will be catching any flack from his teammates as Milroe had a much different takeaway from his play.
“Forget about that,” Milroe said when asked about Simpson dropping the ball. “Y’all see how fast he ran? Dude was moving.”
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Patrick Dowd is a Reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter, via Pat_Dowd77