Jalen Milroe Proves Why he is Irreplacable

November 28, 2023

Athlete Studio

As the spectacular touchdown pass from Jalen Milroe sailed towards the left corner of the end zone during Alabama's remarkable Iron Bowl triumph, a montage of his season unfolded before him. In the midst of the euphoria following the Crimson Tide's 27-24 victory over Auburn, the sequence seemed like a rapid blur.

However, upon reflection, Milroe revisits the tumultuous journey he navigated to reach his current position, including a benching in the third game of the season. Remarkably, it feels as though the entire ordeal unfolded in slow motion.

The irony lies in the fact that Milroe is anything but slow motion. He stands out as one of college football's most dynamic and vastly improved players, serving as the linchpin in Alabama's evolution into a formidable contender for the College Football Playoff.

"Seems like a dream, not always a good dream, but a dream that I never quit believing would become a reality," Milroe told ESPN. "From where I was, the way I was doubted -- and even some people in this building [Alabama's football complex] doubted me -- it truly blows my mind to where it's all led to, and the best part, where it's led to for our team."

Milroe, who is rarely without a big smile, slowly shook his head when thinking about all the things he was told he wasn't along the way, even going back to his high school days.

"I was told I would never be the starting quarterback at Alabama," he said. "I've been told I was not smart enough to play the position. I've been told everything. Even when I was named the starter at the beginning of the season, I don't think a lot of people thought I would keep it, and if I did, that we were going to have a bad season. So, yes, I've faced a lot of obstacles. The main thing is the right people believed in me, here at Alabama and within my family, and I remained grounded in believing in who I am."

"That takes you a long way."

Milroe has indeed come a long way, from being benched against South Florida in Week 3 to delivering one of the most memorable plays in Alabama's long and storied history -- a winning touchdown pass to Isaiah Bond on fourth-and-31 with the Crimson Tide's national championship hopes hanging by a thread.

"That's Jalen Milroe," Alabama cornerback Terrion Arnold, Milroe's best friend on the team, said. "That's who he's always been."

"He's trusting himself now to be who he is. We've always trusted him, and you see the way he's grown. But it's a lot more than what you see on the field with the way he's in here at 4:30 in the morning watching film and the last one to leave the practice field."

"People tell those stories about Kobe Bryant. I think people will tell those same stories about Jalen because all that hard work is paying off."

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