That’s how good he was with the Crimson Tide. Alabama coach Nick Saban called Tagovailoa the most impactful player in the program, and the former Dolphins coach issued a warning before the draft. MORE 2020 NFL DRAFT:Live grades | Pick tracker | Top 100 big board”I just hope teams don’t make the same mistake that we made at Miami when we didn’t take Drew Brees because we thought he was hurt,” Saban said. “And look what he’s done since then.” Miami needed a jolt at the quarterback position. The franchise had one winning season in the last decade and five different leading passers in that stretch. Tagovailoa should solidify the quarterback position when he’s ready to take over for veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is 37 years old. A year behind Fitzpatrick would not hurt Tagovailoa’s development considering his season was cut short by a hip injury. Tagovailoa also dealt with ankle and knee injuries in college, and the durability question will need to be answered at the next level. Injuries aside, Tagovailoa had one of the more remarkable college careers in recent memory. He finished with 7,442 passing yards, 87 TDs and 11 interceptions, and was the Heisman Trophy runner-up in 2019. Tagovailoa was the leader of an offense that averaged 45.6 points per game in 2018 and 47.2 points per game in 2019. MORE: Tua Tagovailoa’s injury historyMiami weighed that against the injury risks and chose the upside, and it’s the right call. Tagovailoa might have been the No. 1 pick if not for the season-ending injury. The Los Angeles Chargers went with Herbert with the next pick, and that means that on some level the quarterbacks will be linked throughout their pro careers. Given the choice between the two, we’d take Tagovailoa over Herbert, too. That’s not a knock on Herbert, who has the arm-talent and mobility to be a successful quarterback in the league. Tagovailoa, however, is a better bet to be a franchise quarterback. He will face the Marino comparisons, too, but that comes with the territory in Miami. Tagovailoa will have a chance to be a superstar in South Beach. The talent is there to make it happen. The Miami Dolphins answered the quarterback question once and for all by selecting Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa with the No. 5 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Despite draft-week smokescreens that suggested Miami might go with Oregon’s Justin Herbert, the Dolphins took the risk that could lead to a franchise-wide reward. Tagovailoa is the most significant quarterback pick the Dolphins have made since they took Dan Marino with the No. 27 pick in the 1983 NFL Draft. At the college level, Tagovailoa had the same brand of star power — perhaps more – as Marino.
To advance, UIW will have to do something not many others have been able to do: score on Southland Goalkeeper of the Year Kyleigh Hall. The junior net-minder tallied a league-best eight shutouts and allowed the second-fewest goals (nine). In the regular-season meeting, Hall made seven saves and was only beat by an overtime penalty kick. Match 4 – No. 4 UIW vs. No. 5 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, 8 p.m.Generating one of the best turnarounds in conference history, the Cardinals improved 11 points from their 2018 campaign to clinch the program’s first Southland Conference Tournament appearance. UIW is one of just two Southland squads that played top-seed Lamar to a one-score game, falling to the other Cardinals, 3-2. FRISCO, Texas – The chase for the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament begins with four quarterfinal matches at the 2019 Southland Conference Women’s Soccer Tournament on Wednesday. The event is being hosted by Central Arkansas at the Bill Stephens Track & Soccer Complex in Conway, Ark. The winners from the first four matches will face off in the semifinals at 4 and 7 p.m. on Friday evening, and the championship tilt is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. on Sunday. All four quarterfinal games and the semifinal round will be streamed on the Southland Digital Network, and the title game can be seen on ESPN+. Match 2 – No. 3 Abilene Christian vs. No. 6 McNeese, 2 p.m.The Wildcats offense posted a league-high 24 shots per match and the second-most goals (31) in conference play. ACU flexed that in the regular-season meeting, defeating the Cowgirls 3-0 behind goals from first-team all-league pick Christina Arteaga and freshman duo Caylen Wright and Natalie Jones, the Southland Conference Freshman of the Year. 2019 Southland Conference Soccer Tournament Bracket (PDF) Match 3 – No. 1 Lamar vs. No. 8 Stephen F. Austin, 5 p.m.For the second time in the last three seasons, Lamar claimed the regular-season title with a 10-1 mark in league play. The Cardinals have thrived due to the success of Player and Forward of the Year Lucy Ashworth and Newcomer of the Year Esther Okoronkwo, who combined for 28 goals and 20 assists in league action (6.91 points per game). The Bearkats’ were outscored by just three in their last five matches against tournament teams, including a 1-0 loss to the Lady Demons. Should SHSU find themselves in another close game, the Bearkats will look to feed all-conference midfielder Kalynn Bickford, who tied for third in the conference with three game-winners in Southland play. Appearing in its fourth-straight Southland Conference Tournament, McNeese will rival the Wildcats with quantity of chances, ranking third in the league with 17 shots per contest. The Cowgirls are led by third-team all-conference selection Havana Johnson, who ranked fifth in both shots (41) and shots on goal (19) against Southland opponents. While LU’s success has come more recently, the SFA has been one of the most storied programs with a conference-best 21 tournament appearances and 15 tournament wins. Second-Team All-Southland keeper Madeline Talbot has her work cut out for her, despite leading the league in save percentage (.929) and goals-against average (.551). No. 2 seed Northwestern State and No. 7 seed Sam Houston State open up quarterfinal action at 11 a.m. CT, and No. 3 seed Abilene Christian will begin its tournament title defense against No. 6 Seed McNeese at 2 p.m. Top seed and regular-season champion Lamar squares off with No. 8 seed Stephen F. Austin at 5 p.m., followed by No. 4 Seed UIW and No. 5 seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at 8 p.m. Match 1 – No. 2 Northwestern State vs. No. 7 Sam Houston State, 11 a.m.Defense has been the name of the game for the Lady Demons this season, allowing just eight goals in 11 conference matches, the fewest among the league. NSU had three members of their back line named to the all-conference teams, led by Defender of the Year Nicole Henry.