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Monday, October 22, 2012

How Far Gone?

The real question we have to ask is, how far gone is the Auburn football program?

 The answer it seems is as varied as the opinions surrounding the most devastating slide of a football program not on probation, in modern college football history. We have heard calls for replacing the entire decision making group of the AU Athletic Department, and all of Auburn's football coaches, to fire Scot Loeffler  NOW!

 What many  fans don't realize is, that Jay Jacobs, and Gene Chizik won't fire offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler during the season. That is simply not how they operate. Has the AU offense really improved on a weekly basis? No, it hasn't made any radical improvement. We see signs each week that some of the players are getting the idea of how to play in this league, but I believe that is more to do with the talent that Chizik has recruited than simply coaching them up.

 What then? Does AU fire Gene Chizik too? Has that already been decided by the powers that be at AU? You nor I really know the answer to that. Let's look at things with a calm thought, and try to dissect exactly where we are at this point in time.

 The defense. 

As each week passes, there have been improvements. Not great strides, but steady improvement nonetheless. 

 Have they played well enough to keep Auburn in the game each week? I think so, yes. Auburn has lost most of it's games in the fourth quarter, and most of those games, led at some point in the second half of play. The offense is really where the problem starts, and ends. This is not to say that the defense gets a pass, because there are some problems, but we get real football answers from VanGorder as to why, and they make sense with what we are seeing on the field.

 During the entire time former coach Gus Malzahn was at Auburn, there were plenty of skeptics against the Hurry Up No Huddle (HUNH) style of offense. The biggest complaint they had was that the defense wasn't getting rested before they were asked to go back on the field.That's not the case anymore. If the defense isn't getting any rest, its because the offense isn't moving the ball.

 The Offense.

 We know that the Auburn offense isn't scoring enough points to help win games. One of the reasons appears to be that the plays take too long to be called in, and the offense does not have enough time to set, motion, and realign to get the play started. This single factor has led to more false starts than I have ever seen from a football team at this level. Put plain and simple that is coaching. If it ain't working, fix it!

 Which leads me to the next most obvious point. If it works, call it again! Not on the next play, but the basic rule of offense is to run plays that work, until you make the defense adjust to that play, then play  off of that adjustment. It keeps the defense guessing. 

 Which leads me to the point of this post. Auburn football is at an all time low. Especially from a fans perspective so close to the euphoria of winning the ultimate prize. It's not just the wins and losses, its how the games have been lost. In my opinion, which counts for nada- zilch- zero, everything could be much better with just an average offense output. That has to come first, from our coaching staff.

 Here is to hoping we can see that this week....


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