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  1. I can tell you that the heavy hitters that make decisions will be in attendance Saturday and are ready to see how it shakes out. In short, Saturday is decision day.
    36 points
  2. I was willing to give a couple years to prove it, he did Saturday. The timeline has shifted for me. Jake is right though, both can be true at the same time. Unfortunately, many only realize the 2nd part without recognizing that the first had a huge impact on the 2nd
    35 points
  3. 31 points
  4. That's a lot of words to say, " I don't know a damned thing, but I'll write about it anyway."
    30 points
  5. Auburn has had a double digit lead in the last five SEC games. Of course, we only won one (last week vs Mizzou) of them. BUT just shows we have the talent level to at least be competitive. With a decent coach, a little portal recruiting for the trenches, and we can turn it around. Time to right this ship.
    27 points
  6. And that's how it should be. The instant and intense hatred for CBH after his announcement was strange. Too many got their lenses muddied in February and couldn't find their way back from the loud and unfounded rumors. Many just doubled down on their hypocritical disdain in an attempt to save face. Those that were willing to show patience were criticized regularly. I do believe though that the majority of those lost their patience this last Saturday too. I did. It was wholly embarrassing and we need to now pivot.
    27 points
  7. I’ve been an Auburn fan for what seems thousands of years (Auburn years are way longer than dog years). I went to AU during the Barfield era and graduated just as Dye started. The 80s some see now as the glory days, but even then there were many grumpy times and embarrassing losses. I’ll never forget the headlines in Atlanta after one disastrous game - “Paper Tigers”. Nonetheless the Dye years had great moments and little drama (the Bear had retired which definitely helped). But I don’t think that’s normal for us. The last 30 years have been an adventure - repeating cycles of trending up, maybe an undefeated season, trending down, total collapse , fire the coach, start again. “That’s so Auburn”. By the time we hired Gus I was familiar with the script and almost expected what ended up happening. Another cycle. Like Cicadas. I honestly think we’ll go big with the next coach and nail it - yes, I hope it’s Prime. And the joy ride and drama cycle will begin again (maybe he leaves for fsu in 7 years). I’m ready. Very few schools are dynasties, many are perpetually average, some were good in the day but imploded into irrelevance , and some will just always suck. What’s unique, wonderful, and masochistic about being an auburn fan is that we get to experience all the categories. Every 10 years or so. .However, if you emotionally can’t handle wild ridiculous swings and you’re young: 1) switch teams. Auburn will kill you before you’re 50 2) don’t get married
    26 points
  8. This may be the most talent depleted team I've seen at Auburn. This changes how I'm looking at what we need as far as coaching. So I know I won't get credit, acknowledged, or whatever because the admin don't too much care for me, but a very long time ago I said we needed Sanders, of course I was stupid and all of that....now over the past week some high profile media has said it and the "insiders" here have mentioned it and now it's ok to say. But I was sort of going back and forth with it in my mind, but seeing how depleted we are he's obviously the best choice. I think he's shown a lot as far as being able to coach but even if he couldn't we're at a point where we need a talent upgrade or we are going to be just like one of the Mississippi school's. Like this is serious right now, we are at a crossroad where we could fall off the map. It would be worth it to bring somebody in that could stock us back up with talent. There's nobody else that could come in and recruit in between bammer and Georgia
    26 points
  9. Cristobal looks bad, Sark looks bad, Jimbo has been a disappointment, Freeman is the first ND coach to lose his first 3 games, Napier is the first UF coach to lose to UK and UT since 1955, Mel Tucker might be a dud, Tony Elliot is struggling, Venables is losing to K State… Lot of these guys will figure it out. Some won’t. Maybe MOST won’t. Point is a lot of other teams are dealing with coaching duds, too. It wasn’t a terrible idea to try Harsin because there’s really no such thing as a sure-fire coaching candidate. All that said, I’m ready for a new coach. Hopefully, we get it right this time.
    25 points
  10. These kids are out there playing their asses off. I hate it for them. I really do. Couldn’t care less what happens with this staff. The players deserve better. That’s all.
    23 points
  11. I can’t stand Jake Crane. He insists upon himself. But he hit the nail on the head with this one. Harsin is and has never been good enough to do this job. And the signs have alwayyyyys been there. Always. This isn’t a surprise to those of us who have been paying attention.
    23 points
  12. Please advise his parents NOT to participate in the AUFamily Forum for all our sakes. That is all.
    23 points
  13. Let’s look at the school to our west: they had a legendary coach retire in 1982. their next coach was only given 4 years (gasp) and went 32-15. Dang! That’s a winning record! Not good enough. their next coach was given 3 years (double gasp) he went 26-10. Oh the gnashing of teeth that poor guy wasn’t given enough time to bring in his guys or was treated unfairly! they settled on an old hag of a coach that brought them a natty in 1992 and retired by 1996 when his best years of recruiting seemed to pass him by. (They didn’t quit firing coaches until they got the one they needed.) then they hire a guy for 4 years again and he plays .500 ball. A disaster. next guy…only 2 years! Holy moly! Can you imagine! He went 17-8! The nerve!!! ok ok here me out…then they hire a guy that doesn’t even get to coach a game. They realize what an awful mistake they’ve made. Cut bait…it’s rolling baby. then they hire the son of a coaching legend…has to work out right? Nope. Fear the thumb. 4 years btw (which I argue is about 2 today given NIL, early recruiting and the portal) but fired before their bowl game. Poor joe kines btw. only then did they luck up and find their failure of a coach from the nfl, hated by the team he left. That was their legend. my point: do what you have to do until you find your dude. Don’t worry about the haters. We are no better than anyone else, but ain’t nobody better than us.
    22 points
  14. All I know is LSU is working on a massive product/deal that will turn NIL completely on its head. LSU will be top cat in college football NIL recruiting for a LONG LONG time.
    22 points
  15. Just spoke to a friend checking on us because of the hurricane who played football at Auburn and he says Prime has a shot at HC.
    21 points
  16. He is doing really well and his parents are a tad upset (frustrated) he wasn’t given more opportunities with how well he did with his limited opportunities. I am hosting them for a few games this year so I will ask again when I see them. Hopefully Holden will stop by and say hello too
    21 points
  17. Mike G. is lost and their takes are absolutely absurd. I really wish these guys would stop trying to sound-off as some sort of authority; they know very little. It's very obvious that they have been colossal Harsin-Homers throughout his entire tenure, so they're still here feebly trying to make excuses for him. The fact that his entire diatribe starts off with "Auburn is a really hard job" is so insulting. I'm so sick of that false narrative. You have to go all the way back to 1998/1999 to find the last time this school has fielded back to back losing seasons - and that was in the midst of the last season of Bowden and the first season of Tuberville. When was the last time a brand new coach at Auburn posted losing seasons in each of their first two years? Has that ever even happened? And Harsin didn't even inherit a loser; he inherited a roster that had never even posted a losing season.
    20 points
  18. I have no problem with the opinion. Just don’t understand the constant need for the prefatory whine about “credit.” That said, it would make those Aflac commercials must-see TV.
    20 points
  19. We have overwhelming data that suggest that by a coach’s second recruiting cycle, he should be making some headway. Harsin is not. With the transfer portal, we have evidence of similar coaches in year two upgrading their roster in key places. Harsin has not. When Bruce Pearl took over an awful roster, he said that they were “my guys.” He didn’t pen blame on the previous regime. I honestly don’t understand how any Auburn fan could watch that today and think we are headed in the right direction. But you do you.
    20 points
  20. Agreed. As a volunteer for the university, we should appreciate that he freely gives his time and does his best! Now, if he were making, like, 5 million a year to put a quality product on the field, it would be a different story. Anyone making that kind of money damn well better be held accountable. Oh Wait....
    20 points
  21. Appreciate it. No spiking the ball here. I was consistent going back to last year that I wanted to be wrong. Honestly, this was a trifecta of bad hires and we just have to move on. my wishes for the fan base are: A) understand that the bot, the boosters, etc are not out to ruin football. They want to win. They didn’t set out to ruin the guy’s reputation this summer…it was from a genuine disturbance and documented grievance within the program. B)understand that the media is gonna say whatever they want. Last week it was how bad we were to let go of the AD. This summer it was how dare we don’t give this guy a chance. We can sit and debate who we can get and who’s available, (that’s gaslighting at its finest btw) but no Auburn person could see that on Saturday and think we are more hopeful going forward. Bruce Pearl is the epitome of what we want and deserve in our football program, and we should go after that—even if we fail— wholeheartedly. war Eagle always!
    20 points
  22. I can tell them how to solve the problem. 4 minutes less commercials would pretty much do it
    19 points
  23. 18 points
  24. If you decide to call out your line to step up their game, you do it to their face in the locker room, not on social media.
    18 points
  25. Can you provide any evidence that Harsin has done anything to start.the process you speak of? And Harsin was doing nothing to help get a leg up in recruiting before the PTB did their thing. Not attending key events, visiting recruits we had a reasonable shot at, etc. There are programs in the SEC that were dumpster fires of a program (namely Arkansas, Tennessee, and to an extent Ole Miss) and their coaches in fairly short order have turned them into competent, competitive programs.. I’ve seen nothing out of Harsin to suggest he’s doing the same here.
    18 points
  26. I think you stick with Robby at this point.
    17 points
  27. Did not have to be done. Bo feasts against bad competition and crumbles against real teams. He belongs in the Pac-12, not the SEC. Good for him for making a smart decision. But he didn't want to be here anymore. We should move on.
    17 points
  28. I've made no bones that I think the Auburn Observer is some of the best analysis and Auburn content out there. This Monday morning Film Room column is free to be shared. Absolutely disgusting offensive malpractice by Kiesau and Harsin. Total inability or desire to adjust to what was working and stay away from what was not. It was obvious to everyone, but this Film Room does a great job breaking it down. Enjoy! https://www.auburnobserver.com/p/film-room-auburn-missouri-offense-2022 By now, you’ve probably seen a lot of the numbers. On Saturday against Missouri, Auburn’s offense ran 66 plays for 217 yards. It was Auburn’s second-lowest yardage amount for a game in the last five seasons, only trailing last year’s Iron Bowl. It was the lowest yards per play average in an Auburn win since the 2006 Cotton Bowl. In the second half, Auburn had more punts (6) than first downs (5). After scoring two touchdowns on two possessions in the first quarter, the Tigers went three-and-out four times over their next eight drives. They had the fewest passing yards (135) since the final game of the Gus Malzahn Era. Auburn’s 17-14 win over Missouri was the latest step in what has been a consistent trend of offensive regression against quality competition. Instead of improving in the second season under Bryan Harsin — who has an offensive coordinator he knows well in Eric Kiesau — the Tigers’ offense has gotten worse. Saturday’s game was impacted by injury, to be completely fair. Starting quarterback T.J. Finley did not play due to a shoulder injury suffered against Penn State. That led to Robby Ashford, who made his collegiate debut earlier this year, getting his first career start. On top of that, Auburn’s struggling offensive line — which has already mixed and matched throughout the first month of the season — had center Tate Johnson leave the game due to an injury of his own six plays into Saturday. Auburn’s offensive output was extremely bad Saturday. But it wasn’t completely bad, especially when you look at the first two drives and some of the explosive plays created by certain players. There aren’t a ton of silver linings, yet they’re easier to find when a team (miraculously) doesn’t lose. No matter the performance, the Film Room stays open. This week’s edition — based on rewatching and charting all 66 of those offensive plays — is divided up into three sections: What worked for Auburn’s offense against Missouri, what should’ve worked and what really didn’t work. Everyone can tell the offense didn’t play well as a whole Saturday, and it’s just the latest in a string of such performances. However, instead of totally focusing on all the bad — and there’s a lot of that — it’s important to look at what worked and what came close to working to see where there might be ways to create some improvement in the weeks ahead. And, by examining what really didn’t work, there could be even more lessons to take away for the future. What worked against Missouri One of the biggest aspects of Missouri’s defense that stood out in the rewatch is just how much time the visiting Tigers spent blitzing. As we mentioned last week, Missouri defensive coordinator Blake Baker is a protege of Penn State defensive coordinator Manny Diaz — whose unit gave Auburn fits in Week 3. Unsurprisingly, Missouri spent all week looking at what Penn State did well against Auburn and tried to replicate it. Missouri was very flexible with its fronts, switching between different numbers of down linemen and using standup edge rushers to attack Auburn’s offensive tackles. Then the visiting Tigers got really aggressive with their inside linebackers and some of their defensive backs. On the 63 non-screen plays Auburn called, Missouri sent some sort of blitz 44 times — which is nearly 70% of the time. Whether it was a linebacker, a defensive back, two linebackers, some sort of combination of linebacker and defensive back or just sending the whole house, Missouri made a concerted effort to keep Auburn’s offensive line under fire. The inside linebackers usually got a head start before going downhill, which gave them an advantage on runs between the tackles. Extra pressure from defensive backs challenged Ashford in the pocket and created even more havoc on rushing attempts. Here’s an example from Auburn’s first offensive play. Watch how the linebackers are already playing the run before the ball is even snapped. That creates more congestion down the middle, which leads to more penetration and knock back, which leads to a one-yard loss for Tank Bigsby. Now, that’s an example of a play that really didn’t work, but it’s included in this section to show just how aggressive Missouri was against Auburn’s running game. With Ashford at quarterback, the Tigers wanted to establish the ground game, especially after abandoning it for stretches against Penn State. There wasn’t a whole lot of success for Auburn’s running game against Missouri. Take out the sacks, and the Tigers averaged less than 3 yards per carry. Bigsby finished with 18 more yards after contact than he had total yards for the game. When you look at the true rushing calls that did work against Missouri, there’s a pattern. Auburn had six carries go for 5 or more yards. Of those five, only one of them went between the tackles — Ashford’s touchdown run on a quarterback draw on Auburn’s first drive of the game. (More on that one later.) The other four either went behind the offensive tackles or around the edges of the offensive line. Bigsby broke a 14-yard run on a cutback after Missouri overplayed the inside and several Auburn offensive linemen were able to get to the second level. Bigsby had another successful run he bounced to the left side on the first drive of the game, once again against double A-gap blitzes. Ashford kept a zone read and hit the edge for a six-yard gain on the opening drive to get Auburn into the Missouri red zone. The other two runs were out of the same look — a spread shotgun formation featuring a tight end split out wide. On this play, Ashford motions Luke Deal toward the inside. At the snap, Deal levels a defender with a crackback block as right tackle Austin Troxell pulls around to the outside. He becomes a lead blocker for Bigsby, who picks up seven yards and a first down. Later in the third quarter, Auburn runs this play again, and it’s one of its only successful snaps of the entire period. Deal clears out the edge, then Jarquez Hunter hits the corner and picks up eight yards on first down. Against an inside linebacker blitz, it’s slightly more effective than the above example. Now, of course, it’s not like all runs outside the tackles worked for Auburn against Missouri. The Tigers lost five yards on a sweep to tight end John Samuel Shenker, which remains one of the more puzzling calls in Harsin’s playbook. Auburn failed to secure good enough perimeter blocking in the fourth quarter when it tried to go back to the crackback toss from above and lost 3 yards. The obvious gamble on these outside runs is that when the blocking isn’t good enough, it’s easier to get dropped for losses. But it’s worth noting that Bigsby got 33 of his 44 rushing yards on the perimeter against Missouri on less than half of his total carries. All but one of Hunter’s rushing yards came around left end. These aren’t massive amounts, yet compared to what Auburn was doing between the tackles — more on that later — it’s significantly better. Bigsby’s ability to break tackles and be explosive in space calls out for more chances to get to the outside. Whether it’s more tosses, sweeps, stretches or true outside zone plays, this offense could use more creativity in the running game, because it works when it’s tried. The other thing that can really work on an aggressive, blitzing defense are quick throws, particularly toward the middle of the field. Here, Missouri shows a lot of traffic in the box and threatens some blitzes. At the snap, true freshman Omari Kelly runs a slant toward the middle of the field. Even though Missouri’s linebackers don’t blitz, there’s plenty of room for Ashford to quickly hit Kelly ahead of the sticks for the first down. This throw a) attacks open areas, b) gets the ball out of Ashford’s hands quickly before the rush comes and c) gets a young player involved in an easy way. That’s a triple-win for Auburn’s offense, which quickly dialed up a screen to fellow freshman Camden Brown on the next play. According to Pro Football Focus, Ashford was 9-10 on throws between the numbers against Missouri but 3-8 to the outside. However, Ashford only threw one more slant the rest of the game — a largely ineffective short gain on third-and-long in the fourth quarter. Additionally, Geriner’s third-down conversion through the air in the third quarter — when Ashford was dealing with a minor injury — was on a nice rhythm throw. Missouri sent a linebacker on a blitz, meaning that Geriner needed to get the ball out of his hands quickly. He fit in a pass to Shenker just ahead of the sticks, moving the chains for a first down in what was a field position-heavy punt fest by that point. With Auburn’s pass protection struggling early in the season, Auburn could help out its young quarterbacks by utilizing more of these quicker throws, particularly if defenses are going to send extra men to crank up the pressure. Another trend that came out of the rewatch was Auburn’s personnel and formation usage and how effective they were against Missouri’s aggressive defense. On the second drive of the game, the Tigers faced a third-and-6 inside the Missouri red zone. Harsin and Kiesau’s backgrounds are both in pro-style offenses. Auburn wants to be able to run the ball downhill and play out of a wide variety of sets in order to give defenses a ton of looks. However, though the first four games of the season, it looks like Auburn just doesn’t have the offensive line to have a bruising, between-the-tackles type of attack. On top of that, Ashford looks like a quarterback who is far more comfortable operating in the shotgun and in more spread-out formations. Against Missouri, Auburn ran 47 plays out of the shotgun for 154 yards (3.28 per snap). Out of the pistol, the Tigers ran five plays for 24 yards (4.8). And when the Tigers went under center, they had 14 snaps for a total of 39 yards (2.79). Personnel packages showed an even greater disparity. Auburn ran 43 plays with just one tight end on the field for a total of 206 yards (4.79). With multiple tight ends on the field, the Tigers had 23 plays for a total of 11 yards (0.48). The Tigers only had nine plays that went for positive yardage with multiple tight ends on the field. Outside of the two touchdown drives to open the game, Auburn’s remaining trips inside scoring territory came in similar situations — the end of the second quarter and the end of the fourth quarter. With just 30 seconds left on the clock in the second quarter, Auburn went with four receivers split out wide on three straight plays. The results? A scramble for 11 yards, a pass to Shenker for 18 yards, and a scramble for 13 more yards. The two scrambles weren’t a result of the pressure, either. Ashford saw the open space afforded to him and took advantage for good gains that set up a field goal try. It’s all about manipulating space and matchups. With more players out wide, Auburn forced Missouri to commit fewer players inside the box. There were a few sets where the Tigers went ultra-wide, which was made famous by Baylor during the last decade. Look at how far out the two pairings of receivers are when Ashford snaps the ball. Auburn’s offensive line absorbs the pressure on what looks like a potential screen to Koy Moore at the bottom, then Ashford takes off. With the offensive line occupying the Missouri defensive front, all Ashford has to do is get past that isolated linebacker in the middle of the park. Thanks to a little bit of help from Hunter, he does that for a touchdown. Again, it’s all about manipulating space and matchups. Let’s go to the final drive of the fourth quarter for Auburn. The Tigers open it with a tight end in the formation, attached to the right side. There’s one safety in the middle of the field, as Missouri has put seven players in the box to try to limit a rushing attempt from Auburn. Ashford sees 1-on-1 coverage on the outside with Moore and discreetly signals for him to run a fade route. Missouri reads running play on the run-pass option. Moore gets the opportunity and slams on the brakes for a back-shoulder ball that gives Auburn an explosive play into Missouri territory. Auburn operated better Saturday against Missouri when it played with some more space and a little bit of pace. Harsin and Kiesau are going to want to continue to give it to their backs and play ball-control football, as that’s their style. But operating with fewer tight ends and more spread-out formations not only helps out a struggling offensive line and a young quarterback — it was also a common denominator in most of Auburn’s successful plays against Missouri. What should have worked against Missouri This section isn’t going to be very long, but it was necessary to point out just how close Auburn was to putting up some much better numbers on offense Saturday. One of the looks Auburn actually ran well from under center was specifically designed to take advantage of just how much Missouri was trying to roll downhill with its inside linebackers. From an under-center set, Auburn fakes like it’s going to run a regular split zone handoff to Bigsby. Missouri’s linebackers crash hard downhill toward the talented running back. Instead, it’s a play-action fake, with Moore serving as the placeholder for a cross-field blocker in the split zone action. The rollout gets Ashford throwing on the run on his natural side, and all he’s got to do is loft a ball right to Moore, who has plenty of space in front of him due to the chaos between the tackles. Moore makes the catch, cuts upfield… and seemingly trips on the 30-yard line. Instead of a huge play, it’s just a 9-yard gain. Auburn went back to the look in the fourth quarter, with Moore getting 24 yards on it as Missouri sends both of its linebackers downhill. (You’ll have to watch it via this link, since the NFL — no clue why they’re involved — made a copyright claim on it.) This came out of an RPO look in the shotgun, but it’s a similar play. Deal comes across the formation to fake like he’s doing his job in the split zone. Instead, Ashford pulls the ball back and has to loop it over the free rusher and into the path of Deal for a potential first down. Ashford puts too much on it, though, and Deal has to make a really tough one-handed grab… just to get a single yard out of it. Put that throw on the money, and Auburn has a first down and maybe even more. At the very least, it would’ve avoided that fourth-down decision two plays later. Here’s one more misfire from Ashford to Deal that stood out. In overtime, Auburn gets a single-high safety in a two-tight end formation — hey, they still can be plenty effective! — and Deal runs a corner route that splits the Missouri defense right down the sideline. Ashford has time and protection, but he overcooks his throw. Deal could have come down with it inside the 5-yard line. It bears repeating that Ashford is still developing as a passer. A lot of his best work is happening on the run or in scramble-drill situations, but there are some good spots for him with his arm when the protection is there. He just has to get more consistent on those throws. If he got just a couple of them back against Missouri, there’s a chance Auburn would have won without the same level of chaotic drama. RB Tank Bigsby (Todd Van Emst/Auburn Athletics) What *really* didn’t work against Missouri Auburn really tried to get its inside running game going. It made sense, considering Missouri had given up some massive yardage to Deuce Vaughn and Kansas State two weeks earlier. But the downhill rushing attack just did not work at all against Missouri. Auburn’s offensive line, particularly on the interior, gave up way too much penetration for it to be successful. Here’s an ugly stat: On runs that went inside Saturday, Auburn backs had 18 carries for just 20 yards. I could pull clip after clip of Auburn’s running backs slamming into a wall of defenders from Saturday’s game. The stats speak for themselves: The Tigers had more yards after contact than rushing yards in total. Ashford’s draw play was arguably the only good inside run of the entire day. Auburn didn’t go away from its identity this time around, but it doesn’t mean it was successful in sticking to it. But here’s one example that says a lot. Auburn goes under center and tries to get Hunter going between the tackles to start the second quarter. Look at how many Auburn offensive linemen are behind the line of scrimmage at the exact same time Hunter gets the ball in his hands. Here’s a screenshot: When Hunter gets the ball, he’s already having to change direction nearly five yards into his own backfield. He gets swarmed shortly thereafter, and he has to do work just to limit it to a two-yard loss. There were times when Auburn’s offensive linemen were able to get into the second level against Missouri, but they mostly came during the first two drives of the game. The rest of the way, the good run-blocking moments were rare. When Auburn went in a heavier formation or looked like they were about to run the ball up the gut, Missouri got ultra-aggressive — and it worked. Missouri slowed down the Auburn inside rushing attack by pure force, outnumbering and outmanning the hosts in the trenches. Trying to get the ball into Bigsby and Hunter’s hands makes a ton of sense. Auburn also didn’t seem to want to get Ashford throwing the ball 25 or 30 times in this game, either. But when it went between the tackles in obvious running situations, most of the positive gains had to come from the backs creating something on their own. Here’s a wild stat: Auburn called running plays on 18 first downs against Missouri. Those plays totaled 35 yards, or less than 2 per snap. On the eight passing plays they called on first down, the Tigers generated 97 yards — more than 12 per play, with five of those snaps moving the chains again. Predictability killed Auburn on Saturday against a Missouri defense that had its number up front. When it came to pass protection, Auburn wasn’t quite as bad as it was a week earlier against Penn State. (However, Missouri was coming off a game in which it had zero sacks against FCS team Abilene Christian, so…) On the 28 snaps in which a quarterback dropped back to pass on a non-screen play, Auburn allowed pressure 12 times. That’s not a great percentage by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s not nearly as bad as what happened a week earlier. And again, all the times Ashford scrambled weren’t solely because of the protection — he left the pocket early on some occasions, and they mostly were good decisions. But when Auburn made mistakes in pass protection, plenty of damage was done. Here’s an example on third-and-long. Missouri sends extra men on this blitz, but it’s an initial edge rusher that wins against Kilian Zierer on the left side. Ashford gets clobbered from behind and fumbles the ball. In the third quarter, Geriner got sacked on a play in which a linebacker got a free shot at him on the left side of the formation. It’s a little bit of a delayed blitz, as the linebacker reads when the back is releasing out for the pass after staying in to protect. The other linebacker takes care of the back, and the blitzing one gets a wide-open lane for a free shot on Geriner. Without knowing the protection rules for this particular play, it’s hard to tell what went wrong for Auburn. But it was still a massive negative play that could’ve gone a lot worse for the freshman quarterback. On Auburn’s next drive, in another third-and-long situation, a free rusher gets home again — this time, coming on the right side of the formation. Three offensive linemen take care of two rushers on one side, while the right guard and the right tackle double-team an edge rusher. That leaves an interior man with a free lane to Ashford. Hunter does a great job of just slowing down the rusher, and that makes Ashford bail out to the right side. That puts him in danger of a defensive back who came into blitz, and his hurried throw well short of the sticks has no chance of being completed. Those are two examples of the Missouri defense getting a free rusher on the left side of the formation and the right side of formation. Again, it’s not any writer’s job to assign blame, especially when we don’t know the play call. But it’s clear that the Tigers are having some sort of breakdowns in protection that are dooming some of these pass attempts from the moment that they start. Everybody involved with Auburn’s offense can improve, especially after a game in which the numbers are some of the recent worst for the program against a team not named Alabama. The wide receivers can improve. The quarterbacks and running backs can do better. The tight ends need to be more consistent with their blocking on the perimeter. But when it comes to Auburn’s offensive woes right now, it really starts up front. Auburn is unable to get any sort of downhill running game going, even with the likes of Bigsby, because of the losses happening along the line of scrimmage. The pass protection is also a major issue, especially with a new quarterback at the helm — even if he has the legs to manage some of the pressure on his own. Four weeks into the season, Auburn largely is what it is when it comes to its personnel. The Tigers can correct and tweak things in terms of their fundamentals at a player level, sure. But, for a staff under extreme pressure, a lot has to be done from them to best manage its current situation. Auburn has done some things to take advantage of who it has on offense and how defenses are trying to attack. As the Missouri game showed, though, it’s not happening frequently enough. And the SEC opponents only get more talented from here.
    17 points
  29. Wtf is wrong with you?
    16 points
  30. Rumors are swirling as to what happened that required @bigbird to need hand surgery. I also heard that @augolf1716 is so old he pre-ordered the Bible.
    16 points
  31. To me, the basis of this entire mess rests with the head coach and coordinators. They have not devised schemes that help our players succeed. Their offensive and defensive schemes should try to emphasize our team strengths and hide the weakness. I don't see any of that. I think they are trying to jam a round peg (players) into a square hole (their preferred systems). A good coaching staff adjusts their plans to fit the talent available, not vice-versa.
    16 points
  32. I wouldn’t take Malzahn back AT ALL. Harsin sucking doesn’t make Gus’ deficiencies any less bad. Auburn deserves MUCH better than its last two coaches.
    16 points
  33. Coach Harsin doesn't owe us an explanation for anything. The witch hunt has started and people will look for anything reason to complain. Stop the bellyaching and see what happens.
    16 points
  34. Not the type of leadership you want from QB1. A few hours earlier TJ was fine to play according to CBH. It makes you wonder...
    16 points
  35. This is how I remember it, timing wise. Some hated Harsin from the start, some defended him until Saturday. But many of us got excited about Harsin in the beginning, then when he lost the last 5 games, wasn't recruiting well, hired an OC that lasted 10 days, and Mason left, it felt like a program in chaos. It wasn't any one thing, it was the combination. And that was before all the rumors and investigation.
    16 points
  36. Our deficiencies on the Oline and secondary are obvious. Overall, there is some lack of size and talent in some key positions. I thought the WRs have played pretty well. We will always take a W, no matter how we get it. It wasn’t that long ago that we went to OT vs Jacksonville State. (Take that, Gus supporters!) Heck, even in our championship years we had some close games in the early season. (MSU in 2013, Clemson in 2010.) After all, point spreads are for those in Vegas. If it all went by the script, there’d be no fun. Bottom line, this PSU game is HUGE. In my recent memory, I can’t think of a bigger game this early that basically defines not only a season, but the program’s trajectory. Win it, and we all see hope. Lose it, and well…get the tarmac ready.
    16 points
  37. I've always thought Marshall was a bit of an aging clown but he sums it up nicely here ... this, more than anything is why Harsin was never going to work at Auburn. His way ... turns out, is not better than the 'bunch of potatoes' at Auburn who don't know anything. It was all so obvious a year ago. It's inevitable now. It was something of an experiment to begin with, hiring the Boise State coach. It was Jay Gogue’s and Allen Greene’s experiment, and they are gone. It hasn’t worked. The results on the field started downhill the second half of last season and are still going downhill at increasing speed. He has taken a different approach to recruiting than any SEC program of which I am aware, and it hasn’t worked. He hired coordinators with SEC experience and then went back to his comfort zone after one season. Against Penn State, Auburn gave up five rushing touchdowns, a sobering fact that flies in the face of Harsin’s talk of toughness. It has nine turnovers in three games and has not forced even one. The team we saw against Penn State looked a lot like the one that struggled against San Jose State. To be successful, the coach at Auburn needs to be – must be – as relentless on the recruiting trail as the rivals to the east and to the west. Every word Kirby Smart or Nick Saban utter is with recruiting in mind. Saban doesn’t need the money he gets for doing TV commercials, but he does it for recruiting. You can’t watch a football game without seeing Saban. A successful coach must be able to surround himself with coaches who are also relentless recruiters and can teach the game. He needs to sell his vision to those who support the program. The one absolute in SEC football is you cannot win without difference-makers. You just can’t. You might find a way to win a game here and there, but players are who win championships. Auburn has some of those, but not nearly enough. And don’t be deceived: Difference-makers are recruited far more often than they are developed. The Harsin watch will overwhelm everything else surrounding Auburn football until something concrete happens. That is too bad for the young men who give so much to put on those blue jerseys. But it’s reality. LINK (Non-Premium Content)
    15 points
  38. 15 points
  39. I thought this needed a thread. Kudos to Tank for being a great teammate and leader during rough times for the team and program.
    15 points
  40. Ran into an old acquaintance today at a business luncheon in Bham and got some very interesting information that confirms my theory on the power structure within the program. This individual was a top 5 “supporter” of the program in the 90s. He is no longer on that level today but he knows everyone inside the power grab. Some of you who may have some connections or network at Auburn may can connect some dots. First, I think we all can agree Auburn has made some head scratching hires the last 15+ years but it was not because some big names were not interested. At least 3 elite top 10 coaches reached out during the last three hirings and expressed their interest in the opening. All three had the same concern of the rumored power struggle outside the locker room. The names I heard would shock some here, unfortunately for the program they were all told there was a set way Auburn did things and that system was not going to change anytime soon. Obviously, all passed on the opening. One of which was a active NFL coach at the time, played for a title and would have been a recruiting giant. Fast forward to this week. Auburn was contacted after the game Saturday and informed two very prominent coaches had an interest if they were looking to make any changes. One is active today as a head coach and one has been a head coach and currently weighing his options. Either one of these would immediately put us back in the conversation and solve our recruiting struggles. Both expressed they would only be interested if they garnered exclusive decisions making for the program and were guaranteed 5+ years. Of course there is no opening today and no formal search committee but there is big time interest from some home run hires already at week 4. I was told, if Auburn looks to make a change this year, we will know buy the next hire if the leadership has finally decided to break the system and go a different direction or if the good ole boy network stayed in place and they select another middle tier coach with some potential or limited success and extra baggage to come on board. I guess we will see how things play out.
    15 points
  41. 15 points
  42. This is exactly how I feel ..minus the freeze thing(although I could get on board). People are acting, again, like being right is better than being best for Auburn. No matter the debate, CBH being successful was always what was best for Auburn. His performance yesterday, while validating to those that never supported him, was not good for Auburn. The fact that some are reveling in his failure is pathetic. It pathetic because it means Auburn looked bad and Auburn failed. Yes, I wanted CBH to be the next Saban and take us to the CFP promise land. Yes, I still think his vision is what we need at Auburn. However, just like Gus, who I supported until he proved himself, I believe CBH is now more detrimental to Auburn than what he can do for Auburn. The deck was severely stacked against him, but he hasn't figured out how to play with it and therefore we need to move quickly to salvage what we can.
    15 points
  43. He’s a bad fit. He’s not a good recruiter. Now he’s a losing coach. not sure why some people are so defensive. We aren’t “showing legit pleasure.” We all want the same thing. We want to be wrong.
    15 points
  44. Like I said, anyone claiming Bo and Kobe as "big" losses is dumb. Anyone claiming we lost more talent than we brought in is even more so. How about the huge losses of Lee Hunter and Romello Height, how are they looking? 😂 Yeah, I'd take Michael Harris, Eku leota, Jayson Jones, and Morris Joseph over those. DJ James, Kaufman, McDonald? Who exactly, that transferred, was going to start was over these guys? Like I said, it's verifiably dumb. Just post their season stats. And you doing the support for Green thing is beyond sad. You're 100% right though, I gave 100% support to Green, until I realized he was not going to work out and backed off my support. The exact same thing I did for Gus. The difference is I gave each enough time to prove their trajectories and you and yours have absolutely refused any support since CBH's name was announced. In fact, a majority of the time, y'all go out of your way to try and make the man look bad. It's as transparent and pathetic as it sounds You see, unlike yourself, it's not personal. I support Auburn. I don't change my support or allegiances based on the individuals at the school. You and your friends should try it.
    15 points
  45. Y'all are so boring. It would just be cool. Not that deep. We've worn them before so it's not unprecedented and could just be a throwback.
    15 points
  46. So I've had some time to calm down and rewatch the game. There are still glaring and concerning issues. However, I think we need to pump the brakes on the panic train. Week 2 for whatever reason was absolutely chaotic at both the college and pro levels. Not to mention Auburn has routinely had one game a year against inferior competition where we look horrible. Let's take a look around the NCAA and see what else happened this past week. Maybe comparing will add some perspective. #2 Alabama only beat an unranked team by one. Texas had to use their backup quarterback for most of the game and frankly the refs weren't on their side. Does that mean Saban is washed? Is his team devoid of talent? Of course not. I'm sure we'll see a very different Alabama next week; just like I'm sure plenty of these teams will clean things up. #5 Clemson looked terrible against Georgia Tech and rather unimpressive against Furman in week two. Yet another team with plenty of talent and a head coach many respected. Also an example of how important quarterback play is to a team looking good or not. Dabo is considered to be in the same tier as Smart and Day. #8 Oklahoma State gave up 44 points to Central Michigan and struggled at times with a horrendous Arizona State team. Gundy has always been a sleeper desire for some Auburn fans. #10 Arkansas looked good against South Carolina at the start but then watched their lead shrink. Letting an unranked team make it interesting until the end. Pittman has been praised here plenty. #13 Miami pulled away eventually but spent a good portion of the game losing to Southern Miss. Even with Cristobal, a coach many here would love to have landed, they looked rough. #15 Tennessee couldn't tackle a grandma in a wheelchair against Pitt but their offense bailed them out. Had they not injured two quarterbacks it might have been a different game. #16 NCST looked good this week against a garbage team but last week barely slid by ECU winning with a 1 point margin. #17 Baylor has solid coaching and momentum but still came up short due to field goal madness. Aranda is another popular name here at Auburn and Grimes (the OC) as well. #18 Florida looked absolutely HORRENDOUS against rival Kentucky in their own home. Likely that Billy Napier couldn't keep the team from crashing after such an emotional high the week before. AR15 damn near killed any Heisman hype he had previously earned. Napier is another name many here wanted and last week were bemoaning we didn't get. #20 Ole Miss poured it on Central Arkansas thick but the week before their vaunted offense looked very middle of the pack. Only putting up 28 on Troy. Lane Kiffin is yet another name so many pine for here on the plains. #24 Texas A&M is still ranked somehow despite losing to App State (who isn't ranked somehow). That's wild when you consider that Jimbo has had the #7, #5, #3, and #1 recruiting classes over the last four years. The Aggies had more 5* players sign last year than App State has had top 1000 players in the last 4 years. Jimbo is another name I see some crying that we never landed. NR Notre Dame lost to Marshall despite having one of the hottest young names in coaching right now and vastly superior talent. Hugh Freeze at Liberty needed overtime to beat Southern Miss and only beat UAB by 7. No Malik Willis has brought that program back down to Earth a little bit. Let's wait and see what happens with Penn State before we look for cliffs to jump off of. Back away from the ledge. Relax. Enjoy college football in all its madness.
    15 points
  47. What ****ing meddling? Here are some things off the top of my head that Harsin has been allowed to do with zero push-back: 1) Fired his WR coach after ~4 games last season (alienating a lot of instate HS coaches in the process). 2) Replaced both his OC and DC after one season with his own buddy-hires from Boise State. Neither guy has much experience at all as a coordinator at the P5 level. No one batted an eye. 3) Hired an OC from the NFL that had to be mysteriously replaced a month into the job. This was Harsin's hire. 4) Let a legacy QB walk off the team, replaced him with his own transfer pick who is now running 3rd string. The guy he let go is clearly better than anyone we currently have on the roster, so he has downgraded from the starter he inherited. This is his freaking team ENTIRELY. He has HIS coaches and HIS players. All FOUR QB's are his guys. It was also HIS choice to not blow up and revamp the OL that Malzahn left him. Let me guess, it's Jimmy Rane's fault that we still have TJ Finley starting and we're struggling to handle San Jose State? Really? Harsin hasn't been prevented from doing ANYTHING he wants to do. Which means that the results are his and his alone. Save me this freaking BS. Nobody put a gun to his head and told him to roll into year 2 with TJ Finley as his starting QB LMAO.
    15 points
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