Jacksonville Sports Day

‘NOLES: No. 1 Alabama Bests FSU 24-7; ‘Noles QB Injured

No. 1 Alabama forced three turnovers, sacked Deondre Francois three times, blocked two kicks and held No. 3 Florida State to 40 yards rushing in a 24-7 victory Saturday night before 76,330 at the new $1.5 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

“This was obviously a great team win for us,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “It took everything we had in all facets of the game, the way we played defense, the turnovers that we got, the difference in special teams in terms of a blocked field goal, a blocked punt, as well as a turnover on a kickoff return that gave great field position.”

Calvin Ridley caught a 53-yard touchdown pass and two-point conversion from Jalen Hurts, and Damien Harris had an 11-yard run and a blocked punt.

Francois left the game in the fourth quarter after injuring his left leg on a sack by Ronnie Harrison, ending a 19-of-33 passing night for 210 yards and a touchdown.

FSU coach Jimbo Fisher didn’t have an update on his sophomore quarterback’s status after the game.

“Until we diagnose it and see, I’m not a doctor, I’ve learned to wait until they say,” Fisher said. “Unfortunately, he’s hurt, though.”

Hurts completed 10 of 18 passes for 96 yards and carried 15 times for 55 yards. The Crimson Tide had 173 yards rushing, with Harris gaining 73 on nine carries.

Hurts completed 10 of 18 passes for 96 yards and carried 15 times for 55 yards. The Crimson Tide had 173 yards rushing.

KICKOFF NOTES: It was the first time since the advent of the Associated Press poll that teams ranked No. 1 and No. 3 played to open the season. Teams ranked No. 1 and No. 4 had played twice. … DE Raekwon Davis, shot in the leg last weekend, had one of Alabama’s three sacks. … Alabama LBs Rashaan Evans (groin), Terrell Lewis (elbow), Christian Miller (biceps) and Anfernee Jennings (ankle) were hurt during the game. … Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban is 5-0 against former assistants. Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher was Saban’s offensive coordinator at LSU. … Alabama, 5-0 in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff, will play Duke in 2019. … The Crimson Tide defeated Clemson in 2008 to begin the event. … It was the first appearance for FSU. … Alabama and FSU have won five of the past eight national titles, four by the Crimson Tide.

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