It’s worth noting that Smith already had returned one punt for a touchdown in the game.
The Crimson Tide have big games ahead and have a great chance of heading to the College Football Playoff. Smith, meanwhile, is a Heisman contender. The last thing they need is any undue risk of injury, so they will likely be furious about this, and they look like they’d be quite justified in feeling that way.
There is actually some similarity to some questionable tackling we’ve seen in the NFL this season.