Alabama junior safety Vinnie Sunseri is out for the season with torn ligaments in his knee, coach Nick Saban announced Monday.
"Vinnie has done a great job for us, he's an outstanding player and a really good person, a good leader," Saban said. "I can't say enough about the job he's done throughout this year and his career."
Saban did not say which ligament was damaged.
During the first quarter of Alabama’s 52-0 win against Arkansas, Sunseri was on kick coverage when he went down with a knee injury. He didn’t return to the game and spent the rest of the contest on the sidelines in street clothes and on crutches.
Sunseri led the Tide with four pass breakups and two interceptions, both of which he returned for touchdowns.
Sunseri has a couple options. He could rehab and prepare to enter the 2014 NFL draft or he could come back for his senior season at Alabama.
Landon Collins will be the new starter with Jarrick Williams playing backup. Saban thinks Collins will excel filling Sunseri’s spot.
"Landon has been a very good player for us in whatever role we ask him to play," Saban said. "... Strong safety is his natural position. When we had all of our players, he was Vinnie's backup, so that's where he got the majority of his reps."
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