It appears that Alabama could very well be down a starting offensive lineman for its latest biggest game of the 2017 season.
Ross Pierschbacher (pictured, left) sustained a lower-leg injury in No. 2 (for now) Alabama’s win over then No. 16 Mississippi State Saturday evening. ESPN.com subsequently reported that Pierschbacher suffered the “dreaded” high-ankle sprain and could miss 2-4 weeks.
Monday, Nick Saban confirmed that the starting lineman will miss this Saturday’s
second bye weekend scrimmage game against FCS Mercer in Tuscaloosa. When it comes to the following weekend’s game against No. 10 (for now) Auburn that will determine the SEC West champion and the conference’s front-runner for a playoff spot?
Saban hasn’t ruled Pierschbacher out for the Iron Bowl, saying he’ll “probably [be] a medical decision” for that rivalry game.
Left unsaid as of this moment is, if the Crimson Tide handles the Tigers, what Pierschbacher’s availability would be for the conference championship game as the longer end of ESPN‘s initial report could leave the redshirt junior sidelined for that as well.
Pierschbacher was a Freshman All-American in 2015 who earned Second-Team All-American honors from the Associated Press the following season. After being named first-team All-SEC heading into 2017, Pierschbacher has started every game at left guard for the Tide this year. The Iowa native has, in fact, started every game, 40 in a row, the past three seasons.
With Pierschbacher sidelined this weekend, it’s expected that senior J.C. Hassenauer will get the start in Week 12.