The bad injury news keeps coming for Alabama, as Nick Saban said today in his press conference that D.J. Fluker suffered a groin injury against South Carolina, and that he would miss at least one week with the injury. Hopefully Fluker returns to the lineup sooner rather than later, but having said that Saban dubbed the injury "pretty severe" and he seemed to indicate that this could be something that would take a while to heal.
Exactly what that means is obviously an unknown at this point. Saban seemed pretty outspoken in the fact that he would miss the Ole Miss game, and if he is being ruled out for the Ole Miss game already then you have to figure the odds are likely that he misses the Tennessee game as well. The hope would be that he could return against LSU -- obviously, given they have the best pass rush in the SEC -- but you have to tread carefully in situations like this. Much like hamstring injuries, groin injuries tend to recur at high rates, so you cannot rush the situation.
Who steps into Fluker's role at right guard? In his press conference Saban said that Alfred McCullough will step in as right tackle, but having said that given Joe Pendry's proclivity to shuffle the entire offensive line when a player goes down, anything could happen moving forward. I figure the smart money is indeed likely on Alfred McCullough playing right tackle and sticking there, but if things don't work out it's possible that McCullough could go inside at right guard and we would slide out Barrett Jones to right tackle. One way or the other, media viewing is closed today for UA practice -- an interesting move in and of itself -- so it's going to be another day at least before we get a glimpse of how we plan to work around this injury.