+ Dec. 3: Underwent minor ankle surgery
+ Spent 4 days following the surgery completely immobilized
+ Dec 6-16: Head Football Athletic Trainer Jeff Allen describes Tua’s rehab as 24/7, he was undergoing treatment at all times, on the flight to the Heisman trophy ceremony, during classes with stem machine and even sleeping with a cryotherapy machine at night
+ Dec 12: Tua was throwing some and able to do some straight line running, Jeff Allen says that although it is counter intuitive, due to the surgery you should actually be aggressive as possible with mobility to prevent stiffness
+ Dec 14: Tua was able to participate in Alabama’s first bowl practice
This week, Tua’s rehab has reduced to 4-5x a day. At night he is still sleeping in the cryotherapy machine and that will continue all the way to Saturday. Jeff Allen says they are also doing some work in the hotel pool to work on his power, running motion, and do some plyometrics.
Jeff Allen says the difficult thing with Tua injuring his left ankle and being a left handed QB is that he has to generate power and rotation with his left leg, the rotation was bothering Tua at first.
Tua said after Wednesday’s practice that the last thing to come back was his lateral movement and that he did not feel that comfortable trusting his ankle with those movements until this week. He does still feel some pain when he drops back but he says that improves almost daily.
Jeff also mentioned that long term he believes these procedures ultimately protect athletes that have a previous ankle injury. He pointed to Jonah Williams, who underwent the surgery last year after the national championship, getting rolled up this season but walking away from it just fine. He said all of the trainers watched the film and said it should have been a bad sprain but it was his surgically stabilized ankle so he was okay.