TUSCALOOSA — During Alabama’s practice Tuesday, quarterback AJ McCarron looked as if his injured knee was sore, but not so much that he lost his sense of humor.
In a discussion after the workout about teammate Eddie Lacy’s 73-yard touchdown run against Missouri, McCarron deadpanned that he didn’t want to run all the way down to hold for the extra point.
“That’s probably the biggest thing. ... That was a long run, so I was kind of tired,” McCarron said, looking down, cleary trying to avoid smiling and giving away that he was joking.
Alabama coach Nick Saban revealed Sunday that McCarron has a bruised knee and would feel sore for a day or two. McCarron looked it as he participated in drills Tuesday, limping slightly.
Even so, McCarron said afterward he feels good and is “ready to go” for Saturday’s game at Tennessee.
That’s different from an online report earlier Tuesday by College Football News reporter Russ Mitchell. He posted on Twitter he had three sources claiming McCarron had torn cartilege in his knee. Mitchell repeated the claim on Paul Finebaum’s syndicated radio show.
McCarron’s mother, Dee Dee Bonner, refuted the reports online, posting they were “100 percent inaccurate.” She also took Mitchell to task for spelling AJ’s name wrong. It’s AJ, with no periods — not A.J. Mitchell later retracted his report.
“Rumors are rumors,” McCarron said.
McCarron went down in the third quarter against Missouri, but after a brief examination on the sideline, he was declared OK to play.
“Anytime you think something goes wrong you’re going to be nervous for a minute,” McCarron said. “But I trust my trainers and team doctors. They made the right call. They know what’s wrong with it and what happened. And I went back out there and played.”
McCarron completed 16 of 21 passes Saturday, including all five attempts after he got hurt. He said he had no desire at all to remain on the sideline.
“I don’t like sitting out,” he said. “I had to sit out when I was 4 from that waverunner wreck. It’s the only year I’ve ever missed. I just don’t like missing plays.”
Now he’s headed to Tennessee, where he threw his first collegiate touchdown pass two years ago in an 41-10 win. McCarron found Trent Richardson for a 5-yard score.
“They definitely pack the house at Neyland Stadium and it’s definitely an awesome experience,” McCarron said. “I remember playing back there in 2010, and it was awesome, especially getting my first touchdown against Tennessee that year. It was pretty cool.”
A reporter joked with McCarron about the rumors about his knee and asked if he was going to need a prosthetic leg.
Even McCarron laughed at that: “I don’t think I’m losing my leg.”