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he knows how to handle the pro-bammer media in this state.....


Tuberville asks seniors about QBs

Friday, August 22, 2008

Tommy Tuberville told the truth. Forbes magazine has not called to ask the Auburn football coach to pose for a photo shoot.

Not that he couldn't be a cover boy.

"I'm going to be on the cover of Progressive Farmer," he said.

Despite losing Reggie Hunt to the NCAA Clearinghouse and one player after another to injuries large and small and the mythical national title of most powerful coach in sports to Nick Saban, Tuberville hasn't lost his sense of humor.

Why would he? According to most credible pollsters, he's got one of the top 10 or 15 teams in the nation. As usual.

"I like that some people recognize, `You know, Auburn does have a football team down there,'" Tuberville said.

He's got a new offense that has to be better than the old one because, if for no other reason, it would be hard to be worse.

He's also got two quarterbacks he thinks can play and win in the SEC.

But a week out from the opener, Auburn still has not identified whether Kodi Burns or Chris Todd will take the first snap against Louisiana-Monroe. Publicly or, Tuberville said, privately.

That's why it would've been fun to be a fly on the wall at Tuberville's house Thursday night. As he does every year, he welcomed the seniors over for steaks and frank discussion.

"I always let the seniors talk about the underclassmen in terms of what they do off-campus, who do you think is focused, who do you think is ready to play, can he handle this," Tuberville said. "I get some kind of insight from them about everything off the field."

He added that they would "obviously talk about the quarterbacks" Thursday night.

"If they're pretty close in terms of abilities and running the offense, players sometimes can tell you, they rally around this guy a little bit more," Tuberville said.

But as far as the head coach knew before the senior cookout, "There's been almost no separation in terms of who the guys like more or feel like can get the job done better."

Picking the right quarterback can bond a team. Picking the wrong one can help it come unglued.

More than choosing a starter, though, Auburn's dilemma centers around finding a winning rotation because Tuberville insisted again that both Burns and Todd will play. The coach said offensive coordinator Tony Franklin will determine the in-game quarterback shuffle.

"The good thing about these guys, neither one of them has a big ego," Tuberville said. "They're team guys. Both of them are gonna help us win games."

How many games? It's a measure of Auburn's sustained success that anything less than a 10-win season should be considered a disappointment.

If you believe in omens, Tuberville picked one up just the other day. Literally.

He was walking, continuing his rehab after hernia surgery, when he spotted a worn playing card on the ground.

It was the seven of diamonds. A red seven.

What's that Iron Bowl streak again? Six.

Tuberville swore this was true, and pulled the card out of his wallet to prove it. Other people, hearing the story, might simply swear.

Kevin Scarbinsky' s column appears Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Write him at kscarbinsky@bhamnews.com

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I don't get Scarbinsky, one day he's bashing Tubs, the next he needs help to get off his knees. Freakin Harvey Dent of Steel City.

He may be the only member of the media in Alabama that simply tells it like it is; good, bad or indifferent.

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