Nick Saban’s guess of a one- to two-week absence for quarterback Tua Tagovailoa times up well with the most anticipated game of the season: at home against LSU on Nov. 9.

Outside linebacker Terrell Lewis said Tagovailoa left no doubt.

“He said, ‘I’ll be back for LSU,’” Lewis said.

Tagovailoa exited the University of Alabama’s 35-13 win over Tennessee late in the second quarter with a high ankle sprain. Saban said after the game Tagovailoa, “will probably be out for a week,” meaning he will miss the upcoming game against Arkansas, but was not clear on the specifics for the open week and LSU game that follow. The message Lewis passed along was consistent with what other teammates heard from Tagovailoa in the locker room.

“He was happy for the team, he’s a team guy,” wide receiver Slade Bolden said. “We’re all team-oriented and he was excited just like the rest of us.

“Mac was ready, he was prepared. We hate it for Tua, we’re praying for him, but it’s next guy up, just like Coach says.”

Left tackle Alex Leatherwood said he couldn’t tell that Tagovailoa was hurt until he was out of the game, and Saban said the same. By the time the team joined him in the locker room for the celebration, Tagovailoa’s spirits were lifted.

“Tua’s good. He has great energy, he always has good energy,” cornerback Trevon Diggs said. “Just praying for him that he gets back well.”

Saban said it was not the same ankle that Tagovailoa injured last season, but Lewis expects that experience to help Tagovailoa in his return.

“I know how Tua is. It’s something he’s been through before, so I don’t doubt the fact that he’s a competitor, he’s going to get right back,” Lewis said. “He’ll be fine.”

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