From all we've heard, Jalen Hurts is going to stay with the Alabama Crimson Tide football team and be the backup quarterback to Tua Tagovailoa. But it's not official until he plays in one more game.
Jalen Hurts was Alabama's starting quarterback until this season -- or really, until Tua Tagovailoa came into last season's National Championship Game and proved he deserves the starting job. I can imagine it must have been a bitter pill for Jalen to swallow. It was probably made worse when his dad got involved, telling Bleacher Report that if his son didn't start: "He'd be the biggest free agent in college football history." Note to parents: Once your kids are adults, stay out of it -- at least publicly.
Despite losing the starting job, Jalen Hurts appears to be sticking around at Alabama. But because of a new redshirt rule that allows a player to appear in up to four games and still redshirt, he'll actually have to take a snap in a fifth game to make it official.
Until he actually enters the game, Jalen could still decide to walk away.
Jalen Hurts will graduate from Alabama in December; and at that point, he can transfer to another school and play immediately in 2019. But will it be for one season or two? If he plays this weekend or any other, he's got just one more year of eligibility going forward.
So there's your drama for Saturday's game against Louisiana, a game in which Alabama is favored by more touchdowns that I can count. Jalen will likely play, and Alabama fans will likely cheer loudly when he enters the game. There's certainly an unselfish element to this. Jalen Hurts has shown he's a great teammate and supportive of starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. But the decision ultimately benefits Jalen, as well. Yes, people will see the high character individual that he legit appears to be. But he will also get another year in a system that's really good at turning out NFL players. And because Alabama is so much better than (maybe) anyone else in college football, he's going to play a lot -- despite being the backup quarterback.
Will Jalen Hurts still be around in 2019? Probably not, he'll take that last year of eligibility and start for someone, and likely be very successful. But this season, he's a member of the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Once he takes the field.