Alabama Crimson Tide star running back T.J. Yeldon has been suspended for the first quarter of Saturday’s game against Colorado State for his touchdown celebration in the first half of last week’s thrilling 49-42 win over Texas A&M, the Anniston Star reports.
In that touchdown celebration (see video below), Yeldon mimicked Johnny Manziel’s “money” gesture and followed it up with a double throat-slash that cost the team a totally unnecessary and potentially crucial 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that could have helped set up a late first half score for the Aggies.
Coach Nick Saban was pretty livid with Yeldon’s decision, saying “that’s not our program” and “that’s not what we do” afterwards, and Saban still showed visible frustration during his Thursday night press appearance.
Yeldon leads the Tide with 224 yards and two touchdowns on the ground through the team’s first two games, good enough for eighth place in the SEC—and bare in mind most of the conference has played three games.
The 6-2, 218-pound sophomore issued apologized for his gesture on Monday.
“I want to apologize to everyone for my selfish actions on Saturday,” Yeldon said in a statement. “That is not the way I want to represent myself, my family and our team.
“That is not the way we do things at Alabama. This is something that I will learn from, and I will use better judgment in the future.”
If there was ever a good time for the program to discipline one of its star players with a first-quarter suspension, this would probably be it, given the Tide’s abundance of talented running backs and their opponent this week (Colorado State is 39-point underdogs).
Michael Gartman is a College Football and NFL Senior Writer, the AFC South and NFC West Lead Writer and the Founder, CEO of GridironGrit.com. He’s also about to start reporting on topics across all sides of the political spectrum and analyze important issues in the liberty movement for a political website. Follow him @_MichaelGartman on Twitter. Be sure to ‘like’ Gridiron Grit on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @GridironGrit to keep up with the latest coverage on college football, the NFL and more!