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Milroe on stepping up for Bama: ‘First thing was talk to God’

When a shoulder injury caused quarterback Bryce Young to exit Alabama’s game at Arkansas last Saturday, backup Jalen Milroe made his opportunity count.

Young went down in the second quarter after landing awkwardly on his right shoulder while attempting to avoid a sack. Milroe, thrust into a SEC West Division road game, was set to play the most meaningful snaps of his young career.

The Tide entered halftime with a 28-7 lead. Arkansas, however, shut out Alabama in the third quarter while posting 16 points. The Razorbacks, down only 28-23 early in the fourth quarter, held all the momentum.

However, Milroe’s explosive play-making abilities crushed Arkansas’ momentum when the redshirt freshman pulled off a 77-yard run on a third-and-long play. The play dealt a major blow to the previously hostile crowd at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium and re-energized the Crimson Tide offense.

The backup quarterback completed four of his nine passing attempts and posted 65 yards through the air, with one touchdown. On the ground, Milroe rushed for 91 yards on six attempts, averaging 15.2 yards per rush, and recorded one touchdown.

The dual-threat quarterback’s athleticism helped lead the Tide to a 49-26 victory.

Credit for Milroe’s stellar performance belongs to his teammates, Milroe said in his first-ever postgame interview.

“The biggest thing was just to prepare all week, all week, just whenever the time is right. I wanna give all thanks to God for the moment,” he said. “My teammates made it much easier, being around those guys, my offensive line talking to me, receivers, running backs, the offensive staff. So all the guys as a whole made the job much easier.”

Interview footage courtesy of 247 Sports’ Charlie Potter, via YouTube:

After seeing Young sustain a game-ending injury, Milroe offered love to his Heisman Trophy-winning teammate.

“The biggest thing I told him was I love him. Our bond that we have off the field speaks much greater than football,” he said. “Anything that I know is just that I love him and we love each other. I just wanted to see how he was doing and check up on him. But he gave me some words of advice. And the biggest thing I wanted to tell him was God was with him and I love him.”

Milroe leaned on his faith upon having his number called in a critical road game.

“The first thought I had was just talk to God,” he said. “Ask for protection, healing. Just know that He’s with me. So the first thing was talk to God. I had a one-on-one conversation with God.”

Dylan Smith is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL

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