Nick Saban Calls Defensive Starter a Game-Time Decision For Cotton Bowl
The No 1. Alabama Crimson Tide is set to take on the No. 4 Cincinnati Bearcats in the 86th Goodyear Cotton Bowl for the right to play in the College Football Playoff National Championship.
Alabama enters the game with questions in the defensive backfield as the team lost starter Josh Jobe to foot surgery after the SEC Championship game.
The Crimson Tide concluded its season without its other starting cornerback Jalyn Armour-Davis, he was limited with a hip injury and missed the last two games of the year.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban indicated on Thursday that Armour-Davis had been practicing and may be available for the semifinal matchup.
"Jalyn Armour-Davis has practiced some. We will make a game-time decision on whether he's able to play. And he'll certainly -- he's a mature player, and he knows whether he can go out there and do his job," said Saban.
If Armour-Davis is unable to play, the Crimson Tide will be fairly inexperienced on the back end of the defense. Fabulous freshman Kool-Aid McKinstry is already expected to make the start in place of Jobe, JUCO-transfer Khyree Jackson is expected to be next in line for Alabama. Should Jackson be called into action, it would be his first start in an Alabama uniform.
Saban also addressed the status of freshman receiver and punt returner JoJo Earle. The Texas-native has missed time this year with a leg injury but appears as if he may also be available for Alabama depending on how pregame warmups go.
The Tide and Bearcats are set to square off in AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas on Friday, Dec. 31 at 2:30 p.m. CT.