Alabama suspends 3 players ahead of Oklahoma tilt

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Sports Xchange

Alabama suspended starting left guard Deonte Brown, fellow offensive lineman Elliott Baker and tight end Kedrick James for its College Football Playoff semifinal matchup against Oklahoma, the school announced.

Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban said in a statement that Brown, Baker and James didn’t make the trip to Miami on Monday. Saban did not divulge if the three players would be available to play should Alabama (13-0) defeat the Sooners (12-1) in the Orange Bowl on Saturday (8 p.m. ET) and advance to the national championship game next month.

Saban said that the players were suspended “due to a violation of team rules and policies.”

Brown, who is dealing with a turf toe injury, has started five of the last six games at left guard for the Crimson Tide.

The 6-foot-4, 344-pound sophomore has helped a rushing attack that averages 5.34 yards per carry and 202.2 yards a game. Alabama ranks second nationally with 47.9 points per game this season.

Lester Cotton, who lost his job to Brown during the season, is expected to take over once again against the Sooners.

Baker has yet to play a down for Alabama, although he has earned his degree from the university.

James, who is listed as the Crimson Tide’s third-string tight end, has appeared in five games this season. He has yet to catch a pass during 10 career contests with Alabama.