The Athletic’s Stewart Mandel offered his prediction for whether Jalen Hurts will be with Alabama when the Crimson Tide open the season against Louisville on Sept. 1.
On Wednesday, the college football analyst gave Hurts a 70 percent chance of being part of the Crimson Tide when Alabama begins defense of its most recent national title. Hurts’ future at Alabama has become a popular topic lately, after his father produced eyebrow-raising comments about the player’s situation in Tuscaloosa if Tua Tagovailoa is named the Crimson Tide’s starting quarterback later this year.
In addition, Mandel notes that Hurts “will be the starter or a major contributor come Week 1.” Still, Mandel recognizes Hurts’ shortcomings, writing, “I don’t expect Hurts to ever morph into a great passer.”
Alabama’s quarterback competition will remain a hot issue throughout the coming months. It’s unlikely that coach Nick Saban will name a starter long before the season opener, unless Hurts decides to transfer. It makes sense for Saban and his staff to take a long, deep look at both options as Hurts and Tagovailoa take repetitions in practice.
Tagovailoa would seem to be the choice who can give Alabama the best chance to stretch defenses with his deep-passing skill. But Hurts’ ability to take care of the ball — he threw just 1 interception last year — should be recognized as well.