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Harsin plans some 'good on good' for A-Day


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Harsin plans some 'good on good' for Auburn's A-Day game

ByMark Murphy
5-6 minutes


AUBURN, Alabama–Bryan Harsin smiled at the question when asked what would make him happy as a head coach a week from today after the Tigers wrap up their first A-Day contest with the former Boise State head coach in charge of the football program at Auburn.

“What would make me happy? I don’t know if I have ever been happy after any scrimmage or spring game, and only because just playing both sides if the offense does well, that is not good for the defense.

“It would make me happy if we go out and execute everything on special teams,”?Harsin noted. “Let me say that. If we execute special teams, I will be happy. Otherwise, it is just things we will leave the scrimmage from knowing we will have to improve.

“We will have a day after that to go correct some stuff,” he said of what will be the 15th and final day allowed for spring training. “It won’t be a physical day, but it will be more a walk-through, correction day and fine-tune a few things before we cut loose and don’t have our practices again until we get into summer time. Then we will get prepared for that.”

Auburn coaches over the years have put together a variety of different formats with how to divide the spring roster for their A-Day contests. Harsin said he has used a variety of  formats as well.

“The format now, a little bit to be determined,” he said. “I?think that is one thing, as we get into this next week, there could be some live components. There will be some components that aren’t live.

“How much special teams work do we need to get? That will be something that we will sit down with Coach (Bert) Watts, our special teams coaches, what do we want to get done? What do we want to see? What do we want to go out there and show? How much do we want to do offensively and defensively, how much do we want to show?

“That is one thing you have to always consider in spring, but overall our guys can play,” he said. “I want them to have a great environment. I want to see the fans, I want to see that stadium with as many people as we can packed in there with our guys just feeling the energy of playing in front of a crowd. That is one of the reasons why you come here to Auburn to have that opportunity.”

The game is scheduled to start at 1 p.m. CDT on Saturday, April 17th.

“Our fan base, playing at Jordan-Hare, it is an opportunity not for our guys to get out on the field, but to execute what we need to do, but it will be a little bit of both. There will be some live, there will be some really thud and tempo for guys. We will really mix that up and then as we get through this week a lot of that.

“All of the springs that I have ever been a part of, I have never had just one thing I?know that we are going to do because injuries or guys being in, guys being out, that really determines what you are going to be to do,” Harsin said.

“If you only have so many linemen, so many D-linemen or so many guys at a position, you have just got to be smart about how much live work you are getting done. There has got to be some live work from this point today. We may sprinkle some of that in in a couple of our practices this next week–get some live in those practices and that will determine how many reps we want to get live as we get into this next, A-Day scrimmage, and where we are going to go from there.”

The Tigers wrapped up their third week of spring drills on Saturday following a week break from practices for the coaches as well as the players, who continued to do strength and conditioning drills. The weather cancelled a full scrimmage that was planned at the stadium, but the Tigers did practice both indoors and outdoors a week prior to A-Day.

Harsin noted that Auburn’s 2021 spring game will have “some good on good” and some “running quarters” and said, “We will have some ones and twos against each other. We will decide our scoring format. I have done it several different ways.

10316479.jpg?fit=bounds&crop=620:320,offset-y0.50&width=620&height=320 Bryan Harsin  is in his first season in charge of the Auburn football program. (Photo: Todd Van Emst)

“There are some really easy ones that we have two teams going the same direction all of the time and you have them scoring, and then there is some tough ones, too, where you have to figure out. It’s just a mathematical mess sometimes, but you get it and it makes it fun, makes it competitive. You have just got to stay on top of it.

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