On Monday, the University of Alabama faced off against the University of Georgia in the College Football Playoff National Championship.
So head coach Nick Saban decided it was time to switch things up. At the start of the second half, freshman quarterback Tua Tagovailoa took the field, and Hurts was resigned to the bench.
While it would be understandable for Hurts to be disappointed and even angry about the situation, if he was feeling that way, he never let it show.
In the trying time, the 19-year-old expressed humility and grace beyond his years. His smile didn't fade, and throughout the game, he offered words of encouragement to his replacement.
Hurts told AL.com:
“As a team player, you have to do what's best for the team. It was important for me to be true to myself and be the team leader I have always been. Don't change because of a little adversity. Be true. Be true to it.”
When the night was over and the trophy was won, Hurts had only positive things to say about Tagovailoa.
“He's destined for stuff like this. He's built for stuff like this,” he told ESPN. “You know, he has that 'it' factor, and I'm so happy for him, happy for this team.”
Hurts, who admitted he's “dreamed” of this moment, exemplified what it means to be part of a team, and in light of the victory, insisted to AL.com, “I'm on top right now.”
“We just won the national championship,” he told ESPN from the locker room. “I've got nothing to be sad about.”
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