Sep 9, 2023; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA;  Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Jalen Milroe (4) celebrates after hitting Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver Jermaine Burton (3) for a touchdown at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Texas defeated Alabama 34-24. Mandatory Credit: Gary Cosby Jr. -USA TODAY Sports

Alabama reinstates Jalen Milroe as starting QB

Jalen Milroe regained the starting quarterback job for No. 13 Alabama on Monday after sitting out this weekend’s lackluster win against South Florida.

Milroe started the first two games for the Crimson Tide (2-1) but was benched following a 34-24 home loss to Texas on Sept. 9.

Tyler Buchner started Saturday’s 17-3 win against the Bulls and completed just 5 of 14 passes for 34 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions.

Ty Simpson took over late in the first half and was 5-of-9 passing for 73 yards, no TDs and no picks. He ran for a 1-yard TD with 33 seconds left.

Milroe, who won the QB1 battle during the offseason, did not play against USF but still managed to make a strong impression on head coach Nick Saban.

“From a quarterback standpoint, this is all I’m going to say about this,” Nick Saban said Monday. “Jalen really showed the leadership that I was looking for during the game, in terms of supporting his teammates and doing the things he needed to do.

“He’s had the opportunity to play. So have the other guys. Jalen played the best of all those guys and so I think he’s earned the opportunity to be the quarterback.”

Alabama, which fell out of the Top 10 on Sunday for the first time in eight years, opens Southeastern Conference play on Saturday against No. 15 Ole Miss in Tuscaloosa, Miss.

Milroe, a redshirt sophomore who started one game in 2022, is 27-for-45 for 449 yards with five touchdowns and two interceptions this season. He has also rushed for 92 yards and two scores.

–Field Level Media

Sep 2, 2023; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Tyler Buchner (8) scrambles up the field against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders during the second half at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: No. 10 Alabama makes quarterback switch

Quarterback Tyler Buchner will replace Jalen Milroe when No. 10 Alabama visits South Florida on Saturday, multiple outlets reported Friday.

Buchner, a transfer from Notre Dame, followed new offensive coordinator Tommy Rees to Tuscaloosa, Ala., in the offseason. He lost a preseason battle to Milroe to replace departed All-America QB Bryce Young, but Buchner has been taking most of the first-team snaps this week in practice, per reports.

Milroe started the first two games for the Crimson Tide (1-1), including last Saturday’s 34-24 loss at home to then-No. 11 Texas, which rose to No. 4 after the upset win. Milroe completed 14 of 27 passes for 255 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.

Alabama coach Nick Saban said after the defeat that he considered playing another quarterback. Buchner played as a reserve in the Sept. 2 season opener, a 56-7 home victory over Middle Tennessee, and completed 3 of 5 passes for 27 yards and rushed for a 9-yard touchdown.

“We evaluate every position every week. If guys want security in their position, they need to play well,” Saban said Wednesday. “Everybody on our team knows that. I think everybody has responded in a positive way to try to get better and to improve. We’ll constantly evaluate that position as we do every other position.”

A redshirt sophomore, Buchner spent the 2021-22 seasons at Notre Dame, playing in 10 games as a freshman and making three starts as a sophomore before a shoulder injury ended his season.

He passed for 949 yards, six touchdowns and eight interceptions with the Fighting Irish. Buchner also rushed 82 times for 459 yards and seven TDs.

Milroe, a redshirt sophomore who started one game in 2022, is 27-for-45 for 449 yards with five touchdowns and two picks this season.

–Field Level Media

Dec 31, 2022; New Orleans, LA, USA; Alabama quarterback Ty Simpson (15) warms up before he Crimson Tide   s game with Kansas State  in the 2022 Sugar Bowl at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports

Favorite emerges in Alabama’s three-headed QB race

Alabama is in a similar boat to several other powerhouse programs as the Crimson Tide approach August without a definitive answer at starting quarterback.

However, the Tide’s situation is even a bit murkier with a trio of potential signal-callers in the picture for the team’s season opener against Middle Tennessee.

Ty Simpson is the current +150 favorite by to be under center for that Sept. 2 game. That’s slightly ahead of Tyler Buchner (+140) and Jalen Milroe (+300).

The trio are competing to replace Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and was named the Carolina Panthers’ starting quarterback on Wednesday.

Alabama coach Nick Saban said this week that none of his 2023 quarterback options created separation in the spring and so, as with “Grandma Saban’s best cake in the world,” the plan is to “not rush it.”

“She’d say, ‘If I take it out of the oven too soon, it’s gonna turn to mush.’ We have to make sure we let the cake bake,” Saban said.

That oven could continue to be set to bake beyond the season opener, with Alabama set for a showdown against the Texas Longhorns in Week 2.

Alabama also has new coordinators following the exit of Bill O’Brien on offense, but Kevin Steele returned to fill the void at defensive coordinator for his third stint on Saban’s staff.

Tommy Rees has the dual role of coordinator and quarterbacks coach and drew raves from Saban. Rees was offensive coordinator at Notre Dame, where he played quarterback, for current LSU coach Brian Kelly.

“Tommy Rees is one of the brightest young minds I’ve seen in a long time in this business,” Saban said.

Buchner began his career under Rees at Notre Dame, so the two have more familiarity. Meanwhile, Milroe has the edge in on-field experience, having completed 31 of 53 passes for 297 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions last season.

Simpson saw only limited snaps in 2022, completing 4 of 5 passes for 35 yards in appearance in three blowout wins. However, many analysts are expecting the redshirt freshman to emerge as the Tide’s starter.

Simpson named the Tennessee Gatorade Player of the Year after throwing for 2,827 yards and 41 touchdowns and leading his Westview team to the Class 2A state title as a senior.

Alabama will actually have five scholarship quarterbacks on its roster this season, including Eli Holstein and Dylan Lonergan.

While there are also quarterback competitions at SEC rivals Georgia and Auburn, oddsmakers believer there are clear frontrunners at both.

Carson Beck is the heavy -700 favorite by the book to start Week 1 for Georgia over Brock Vandagriff (+400); while Payton Thorne is the -200 favorite to start the season for Auburn ahead of Robby Ashford (+150).

–Field Level Media

Sep 10, 2022; South Bend, Indiana, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish quarterback Tyler Buchner (12) throws as he is hit by Marshall Thundering Herd defensive lineman Isaiah Gibson, Sr. (99) in the first quarter at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame QB Tyler Buchner (shoulder) likely out for season

Notre Dame quarterback Tyler Buchner is likely out for the season with an injury to his non-throwing shoulder.

Buchner will have surgery on Tuesday and is facing a four-month recovery period.

“He ended up getting I think a Grade 5 out of 6 AC sprain in his (left) shoulder,” Irish coach Marcus Freeman said Monday.

Buchner is not on the depth chart for Saturday’s game between Notre Dame (0-2) and Cal (2-0) in South Bend, Ind.

Drew Pyne is the new QB1 with true freshman Steve Angeli listed as the backup.

Buchner completed 28 of 50 passes for 378 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions in two starts this season. He rushed for 62 yards and two scores.

Pyne relieved Buchner in Saturday’s shocking 26-21 home loss against Marshall and completed 3 of 6 passes for 20 yards with one TD and one interception.

–Field Level Media