The Alabama Crimson Tide repeated as National Champions back in January but things apparently weren’t as easy as they appeared. Despite Rolling Tide all the way to a title, Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron played the last six games of the college football season, including the SEC and National Championship games, with a rib injury.
“I had three ribs come out of place,” McCarron told ESPN.com earlier this week. “They kept popping in and out of place, the one at the top, and it was just a nagging pain the whole time.”
McCarron said that he suffered the injury all the way back on October 27th in a game against Mississippi State which explains why he looked so mortal against the LSU Tigers and Texas A&M Aggies. The game after suffering the rib injury, McCarron struggled through much of Alabama’s game against LSU before leading them back to win. The following game, things didn’t go as swimmingly as the Tide dropped their first and only game of the season in a loss to Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M.
“I couldn’t throw much during the week for a long time, really almost up to the bowl game,” McCarron admitted. “I was hurting really bad through the week, and it just took a long time for those ribs to heal.”
McCarron said that the five weeks between winning the SEC Championship and playing in the BCS National Championship allowed him to heal but he still wasn’t 100 percent when the Tide took on the Notre Dame Irish. However, McCarron played one of his best games of the season against the Irish, throwing for four touchdowns in the win.
“When it first happened, I still tried to throw some so our timing wouldn’t fall off that much in our passing game,” McCarron said. “That’s one of the things that kind of put a damper on our passing game a little. I was injured, and we had so many receivers injured, so it was hard to do a whole lot in practice. That kind of threw us off a little, but we still kept it going.”
Barring another injury, McCarron and the Tide will be going for a historic three-peat this season but as he proved in 2012 even if his ribs aren’t in the right place inside his body, nothing can stop McCarron or the Crimson Tide.