TUSCALOOSA — After practice Wednesday, Alabama coach Nick Saban took aim at a report that quarterback AJ McCarron’s knee injury was more serious than a bruise.
College Football News reporter Russ Mitchell posted on Twitter he had three sources claiming McCarron had torn cartilage in his knee. Mitchell repeated the claim on Paul Finebaum’s syndicated radio show, although he later retracted the report.
“AJ has been able to take every rep in practice. ... He does have a bruised knee,” Saban said. “That’s what he has. That’s what the MRI showed. I don’t know why people want to put something out that’s totally, ridiculously untrue. It compromises the integrity of the medical staff, the doctors and everybody who does what they do.”
During the media viewing period of practice, which was about 16 minutes long, McCarron was seen going through all drills while wearing a black brace on his bruised right knee.
When asked if the Tide offensive line has more incentive to keep McCarron from getting hit, Alabama center Barrett Jones said, “Oh, I think AJ’s knee is fine, first of all, so not really. Certainly any time we want to protect AJ and we’ve done an all right job of keeping him clean, even though he complains any time he gets hit.”
Jones smiled and added, “You know how quarterbacks are. We’ll try and keep him clean to the best of our abilities.”
‘Internal’ discipline for Fanning
The Southeastern Conference will not suspend
Alabama defensive lineman LeMichael Fanning for body slamming Missouri running back Russell Hansbrough during Saturday’s 42-10 win, but that didn’t mean the freshman got off without punishment.
Whether that punishment includes not making the trip this weekend to Tennessee, Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban won’t say.
“We’re handling his poor judgement internally,” Saban said.
All Saban has revealed is that Fanning had to write letters of apology to Missouri coach Gary Pinkel and Hansbrough.
“I know Nick Saban. He doesn’t teach anything like that ever,” Pinkel said. “Thankfully nobody was hurt. It was a very dangerous act. I don’t think there was any malice.”