The morning after his high-ankle sprain, Tua Tagovailoa already went under the knife.
Alabama released a statement from Nick Saban on Sunday morning updating Tagovailoa’s status.
“Tua Tagovailoa suffered a high-ankle sprain last night against Tennessee,” the statement read. “Our physicians performed a successful tight-rope procedure on his right ankle this morning. This is the same injury, but the opposite ankle that Tua injured last season. Tua will miss next week’s game against Arkansas, but we expect a full and speedy recovery.”
The high ankle sprain was a bad one, according to sources, but the team is optimistic Tagovailoa will be back in time to play No. 2 LSU Nov. 9.
Tagovailoa had the same tight-rope procedure last December on his other ankle after going down with the same injury in the SEC title game win over Georgia.
“A two-week recovery time is about as fast as I’ve heard of anybody trying to get back on the field with a true high-ankle injury,” said Dr. William McGarvey of Katy (Texas) Orthopedics when asked about return-to-play time tables in a December 2018 AL.com story.
Alabama has three weeks before that showdown with LSU at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Tagovailoa was telling teammates after the Tennessee game Saturday that he would be back for the LSU game.
The injury occurred in the second quarter of Alabama’s 35-13 win over Tennessee.
Left tackle Cam Robinson had a quick turnaround returning from a high-ankle sprain in 2014 for the LSU game.
He had just two weeks between the injury and starting in Tiger Stadium for what became an overtime win for the Tide.
Tagovailoa was on a scooter for a week last year before returning to practice. He started the Orange Bowl 29 days after his injury and threw for 318 yards and four touchdowns during Alabama’s win over Oklahoma.