Dallas Turner’s big hit on Jayden Daniels over the weekend is still a hot topic of discussion days after the incident.
Turner delivered a fierce hit to Daniels in the fourth quarter of Alabama’s 42-28 win over LSU that sent the LSU quarterback into concussion protocol and out for the rest of the game.
A flag was thrown against Turner for an unnecessary roughness penalty, but targeting was not called. Because targeting was not reviewed or called, controversy surrounding the hit has spread throughout college football.
Jayden Daniels was shaken up after taking this hit that was ruled roughing the passer. pic.twitter.com/4JKCTNnaPr— CBS Sports College Football 🏈 (@CBSSportsCFB) November 5, 2023
Nick Saban weighed in on the hit during his Monday press conference, claiming that the hit deserved unnecessary roughness, but there was no intent by Turner to hit Daniels’ head.
“He hit the guy here (pointing to his chest) and then he sort of hit him on the chin,” Saban said. “So it wasn’t like a direct hit or an intentional hit to the head. It was a really good hit, but unfortunately, his helmet did slide up and hit the guy, so it’s a foul. If you hit the quarterback in the head, it’s going to get called all the time.”
LSU head coach Brian Kelly was told after the game that the play was reviewed for targeting despite it not being announced on the field.
"Obviously I don't have the ability to see that,” Kelly said. “Anytime there is contact to the head or neck area you're thinking there must be some form of targeting. They reviewed it, didn't feel there was, so we moved on.”
Kelly, still looking for an explanation for the lack of a targeting call, told reporters that he had submitted the play to the Southeastern Conference office for further review.
If there is ever a chance to stir the pot in the SEC, Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin is sure to throw his comments out there. Sunday, he did just that on a Zoom call with reporters giving his opinion of Turner’s hit.
"I can say — nothing against those officials — I was blown away that was not targeting," Kiffin said. "I mean, from the second that I saw it. And the hit to the neck and head injury — how that wasn’t and how that wasn’t reviewed."
Kiffin also questioned why they didn’t review the play while Daniels was being attended to by the medical staff.
"I obviously don’t understand the rules, because that’s not just missing it on the field," Kiffin said. "That’s having plenty of time to look at it and not throwing it. Again, that would go into my — I don’t know if there’s a more important job for the officials than to protect the quarterback, who’s in a very vulnerable position by how he has to throw the ball."
Turner’s hit ended Daniels’ night and removed any threat of the LSU offense making a comeback against the Crimson Tide. Daniels finished with 219 yards passing with two touchdowns and one interception. He also added 163 yards on the ground where he did the majority of his damage against the Alabama defense.
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