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Monday, June 30, 2014

Ode to Phillip Lutzenkirchen

Ode to 
Phillip Lutzenkirchen

We will miss you dear Friend Lutzy!
Your time here on earth is done!
Even now as you smile from Heaven,
Your Auburn family is missing  their son!

You truly represented Auburn well;
And we won't  forget your Heartfelt smile!
You kept moving your teammates forward,
taking the high road and extra mile!

Your spirit will forever surround us as we watch the Eagle Soar!;
And your soul will always  be resounded when we hear the Tiger roar!

You are gone but not forgotten!;
And We are sad there was no time for goodbye!,
But your Auburn Family Will always remember you
When we look towards that orange and blue sky!!

As for your close knit friends and family 
Who had no time to bid a fond farewell,
You have left them with a great legacy 
And many happy memories and fond stories to tell!!

So soar on the wings of the Eagle!
Keep smiling from above!
Your presence will remain on the plains in Auburn!
Thanks for sharing your AUsome love!

RIP Phillip Lutzenkirchen


The Poetic Tiger

Friday, June 27, 2014

CFP Contenders- UCLA Bruins

I absolutely despise this time of year from a college football perspective. There are few actual college football headlines, so the media gurus are searching for, and sometimes making up, their own headlines. Thank goodness for the actual sports that we do have going on in the summer. Plus this year we have the World Cup. 

I wanted to take this space and time to look at some of the contenders that have a realistic shot at making one of the four spots available for the newly formed College Football Playoff (CFP) I'll try to give you evidence as to what makes them contenders, not just my opinion. Feel free to leave comments on this post or any of our Social Media platforms. TWITTER, FACEBOOK, FANCRED, PINTEREST, GOOGLE+ or INSTAGRAM

Since I am a firm believer that our Auburn Tigers are going to make the new playoff, I will only be looking at who our competition may be when the regular season ends.

The ESPN show that features college football had an interesting discussion the other night about how good the PAC 12 is going to be this fall. There was a lot of banter about whether or not the teams in the PAC 12 were as good as the SEC teams, and if the conference stacked up top to bottom with the SEC. I am not here to debate that, although it does lend some credence to what I am about to tell you. 

U.C.L.A. will be a beast this year.

The Bruins are led by NFL experienced head coach Jim Mora. An added plus is that the Bruins are led offensively by former Auburn Offensive Coordinator Noel Mazzone.
Coming off of a 10 win season, including the drumming of Va Tech in the Hyundai Sun Bowl, the Bruins are returning a two year starter at the QB position.  

Brett Hundley has amassed an impressive resume while leading his team with record setting performances in passing completions, passing yardage, and total offense. All were single season marks. There is no reason not expect these numbers to climb this season, and possibly have Hundley atop many career marks for the storied Bruins football record book. 

Looking at the page we see that UCLA was ranked 20th in scoring offense.While hanging around in the middle of the pack in total defense. 

Defensively, UCLA probably won't rank well this season either because the PAC 12 returns so many good QB's much like the SEC did last season. This was one of the talking points analyst used to compare the two conferences for the upcoming season. 

The Bruins' schedule includes five teams with offensive production ranked higher than their own last season in Oregon, Washington, Arizona, California, and Arizona State. This tough schedule also includes annual powerhouse Stanford.

Coach Mora has the luxury of returning nine players on each side of the ball. If the pass blocking can improve, and the defense against the run can improve, this team will make a run for the PAC 12 title, and the CFP.

Other possible contenders from the PAC 12: Oregon, Stanford, Arizona

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Bologna Sandwich, the Ole Miss Game

The talk all around the sports world is that Auburn can not go undefeated in college football because of the schedule they face in 2014. Somewhere down the line, the Tigers are going to slip up and let one get passed them. Many predict the game in Oxford, MS to be that game.


This will once again be a game that Ole Miss blows out of proportion. It might even be another "uniform" night like the horrid Gray jersey worn in 2010. How did that work out?

Once again Auburn will return to Oxford with an experienced offensive line, and running backs. The big difference will be at QB. Nick Marshall will be more than a seasoned veteran when this game is played, and Auburn will not be just starting to believe in themselves. This a truly a different Auburn team at this point than any Ole Miss squad has seen, maybe ever.

Last season Robenson Therezie had his breakout performance vs. Ole Miss. This is also the game we learned that Carl Lawson had an unusual sack dance where he skips back to the sideline after making a sack.

Turn the page, and this Ole Miss team is no slouch either. The heralded QB Bo Wallace returns for his Senior season, and Ole Miss returns all but one player from a two deep offensive line.

The Rebels lose four members of defensive front rotation. Add to that the losses of a linebacker and two DB's means that Ole Miss may not be as salty on defense this coming fall.

Auburn's defense won't be able to keep Ole Miss from moving the ball some, and scoring. Look for the Tigers to be good enough on defense to create enough havoc to cause some broken hearts around the Ole Miss faithful. Ole Miss will not be able to match Auburn score for score.

Look for Auburn 48 Ole Miss 27


Monday, June 16, 2014

Is Steve Spurrier Cursed at USCe?

Cam Newton led the Tigers to the SEC Championship in a win vs. South Carolina
Date: October 25th
Where: Jordan-Hare Stadium
Are there forces at work here, that we might not fully understand? 

On December 2nd, 1933 South Carolina recorded it's only victory over Auburn University, known then as Alabama Polytechnic Institute. The margin of victory was a mere two points, 16-14. Since joining the South Eastern Conference USC has recorded a goose egg in the win column when it comes to the playing the Tigers. 

It seems recent history has conspired against Steve Spurrier when it comes to playing against Auburn. 

In 2010 USC had experience and some depth at QB, along with experience along the offensive line, they ran into the buzz saw that was Auburn. The Tigers had came into the season with lots of hope, and momentum after a successful 2009 season and a rousing New Years day win over Northwestern, Auburn brought in a JUCO QB  named Cam, and the rest is history. The Tigers defeated South Carolina twice in 2010 on their way to the title. Below is a video of Auburn's offense versus the South Carolina Defense.

In 2011, the last meeting between these two schools, a somewhat controversial call of an apparent TD was not overturned by the replay booth, much to the dismay of the Gamecock faithful. Auburn won on the road 16 - 13.

In 2014 Auburn will bring depth and veteran experience at every offensive position except H- Back. Even that position is not without some experience. The Gamecocks will counter with experience at Safety in Sharrod Golightly and Brison Williams, and at the defensive tackle position with Phillip Dukes and J.T. Surratt.
Running the ball up the middle may be tough going against this defense. Thankfully, this Auburn team will be more balanced than the one that took the field last year in the middle of the season.

Auburn's defense will have been tested aplenty by the time the Gamecocks roll into town, and we'll know a lot more about their capabilities when kickoff comes for this contest. South Carolina is tested and tough. This may be Steve Spurrier's most balanced bunch with depth and experience galore.

If Auburn's defense improves as much as this writer thinks it will in 2014, then this game should be close for about 3 quarters. Then I look for Auburn's offense to over power the South Carolina defense. If it becomes a shooting match, I like our odds with our offense. 

Auburn will have to play mistake free football for most of the game in order to defeat this version of Gamecocks, if it doesn't anything can happen. Look for the curse to continue for Coach Spurrier, and an Auburn win. AU 45 USC 30

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Life Can Be Interesting

Life can be interesting at times. I was asked by a friend to watch the girls softball tournament at Chastain Park this weekend so I decided to walk my normal route in between games. Here is a photo of Kenny Irons and his friends who I met on my walk. 

I enjoyed talking to you about Auburn football and cycling.


Saturday, June 14, 2014

Great Timing

I have to ask you a question. When I do, please leave your comments on one of your favorite venues of communication. We would love to hear from you.

Coach Malzahn has continued to show that his love for all things Auburn is more than just a statement. He walks the walk.  Evidenced by this article from
Auburn has several athletes on our Track & Field team in the finals of NCAA competition. "Representing the Tigers will be seniors Stephen Saenz and DJ Smith, juniors Valentina Muzaric and Samantha Scarlett, sophomore Rachel Dincoff and freshmen Justin Carter, Khalil Henderson, Ebony Morrison and Teray Smith." -

New Men's basketball coach Bruce Pearl has made his presence felt all over campus.

Women's Tennis is doing so good that Coach Meisner has tied the all-time most wins total in her time span.

Auburn's Gymnastics team returns a strong group this fall with an eye on taking the SEC Championships and ending a string of disappointment against our arch rivals.

Auburn Softball is the on a path to win championships sooner rather than later.

In fact, many Auburn teams are doing great things. So, here is the question: Is this the most amazing time to be an Auburn Tiger sports fan?

Head Basketball Coach Bruce Pearl Speaks at Camp War Eagle

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

This Is Auburn Basketball: Summer Update

Football: "More Than A Game" - Pump Up 2014-15 ᴴᴰ

Mississippi State Looks for Payback

photo by Julie Bennett

Date: October 11th 2014
Where: Starkville, Mississippi

This was it. This catch featured at the top of our story was where the 2013 Auburn team found themselves. They were down by 3 points with less than 2 minutes to play, and Nick Marshall drove his team down into State territory. On a beautiful double move that coincided with Marshall's pump fake, Nick hit C.J. Uzomah in the endzone to put Auburn up for good.

As with every year, we find ourselves hearing just how good Miss State will be, and that Dan Mullen, the coach of the Bulldogs has all the right pieces to the puzzle to win big in Starkville. Only this time, the pundits may have their information correct. 

Miss State returns a ton of experienced players, and their QB, Dak Prescott, is as talented as any in the league. Prescott attempted 134 passes last season averaging 6.2 yards per attempt and threw for 13 TD's while sharing the QB duties. This season he will be the man. He's a big QB and can run the ball well. 

Auburn on the other hand will be battle tested in league action, and with big games on the road before they head into Davis Wade Stadium on what will surely be a nationally televised contest. The Bulldogs will have to play perfect football, with zero turnovers to keep Auburn's offensive juggernaut from scoring early and often.

It will be difficult to keep the Bulldogs from scoring any points, however this Auburn team is focused and on a mission. Look for the Auburn defensive line to have a really big game. Especially in the second half of the game.

There won't be a need for late game heroics this time around as the visiting Tigers will take control early, and survive any threat State can muster. Look for Auburn 44 and Mississippi State 20

I Believe - American Outlaws Tribute

Thursday, June 5, 2014

It's Time: Kings of Alabama Basketball Championship

For years Auburn Basketball has accepted invitations to go play in other venues and be a part of other tournament settings. has the proof of this in this article

I say it's time we have a statewide champion named at least on a semi annual basis, in basketball. We have 12 or more basketball teams within our border. There should be an event to name the champion of our state when it comes to basketball.

If the schools would start working now, on the 2015  preseason schedule, they could make this happen sooner rather than later.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the "Kings of Alabama Basketball Tournament".

Projected tournament bracket

 The two teams that play for the Kings Crown would get four games in tournament action, which we can all agree would be good experience. 

The beauty of this tournament is that it wouldn't matter if  it were played preseason, or during the season. That could even be split up. The opening two rounds could be played in the preseason, and the final two games could be played on open dates in the regular season. 

As many teams as this great state has, there should be no problem filling an 8 team bracket at least every other year. If Auburn and Alabama were to play each other for the championship of this tournament, it could be counted as a non-conference game like the Capital City Classic baseball game each year.

My hope is that someone within Auburn Athletics can see how this would benefit every school in our state. Even if for some reason Alabama and Auburn both could not make the tournament one year, it would be a fantastic event.

A more grand trophy could possibly be the prize with the winner getting a copy to keep forever in the schools trophy case.

Auburn FB Players at Opelika Kids Camp

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Hot Topic: Division IV or Nah

The college football landscape is in a shift. The decisions that are to be made during the next NCAA meeting will determine if this shift is a smooth transitional slide toward improvement, or a 9.0 earthquake.

In case you haven't heard, this week during the SEC meetings, Commissioner Mike Slive stated that the NCAA will grant autonomy to the the major conferences within Division 1, or those top conferences would create a Division 4 level with it's own separate set of governing rules. Those conferences include the ACC, Big 12, B1G, PAC 12, and the SEC.

There is a tremendous amount at stake here. Money being the prime factor in all of this. The creation of a Division 4 would all but completely dry up said monies for the remaining schools in Division 1.

If you think all of this just popped up this past week, day, or year, you would be wrong.

Looking back over the past 5 years, we have seen conference expansions, and new conferences created. These are the building blocks that led to where we are today. Moves by the Mountain West to try and get to 16 teams, and the Big East losing it's grip on what was once their top programs, are all parts of the puzzle that has led to this point.

Positioning. Every school that wants a larger slice of the pie, has tried to position themselves for that reason. Louisville to the ACC is the latest example. Nobody wants to be left out. Who can blame them?

During the annual meeting of the South Eastern Conference this past week, a record 309.6 million dollars was distributed to the schools. Nearly 21 million dollars for each school. Think these schools and the conference itself won't fight to keep that? You better think again.

 Much like the proposed 10 second rule, the reasoning used by the top conferences of student athlete well being, is a small part of the entirety in this demand. That student athletes on full scholarship aren't actually receiving "full" paid scholarships is deplorable at its core. That financial assistance to eliminate that under current rules provisions, and thus incurring a violation, is absurd. This should have never been allowed to happen. That it did, is proof that the NCAA is lethargic and incapable of making sound judgements on these issues.

Granting autonomy will allow for much more flexible and faster changing of rules. The dinosaur is dying a slow death, and autonomy will allow for the top conferences to self govern while remaining under the NCAA umbrella.

In an article posted by Charles Goldberg on the official Auburn Athletics website, Mr. Goldberg reports;
Big schools want to spread the wealth. If they're not allowed to, a new division could be next.
"By going to Division IV you would create rules for your division just like you create rules for Division I. Division II has its own rules," Slive said. "But we think the NCAA is better served, and college athletics is better served, if we could all stay together in Division I.
"This is a way to retain the collegiate model. I think it would be a disappointment, and in my view, a mistake, not to adopt the model.
"We've said we believe the NCAA is the appropriate umbrella organization for intercollegiate athletics. Everything we've done and thought about has been in the context of being in the NCAA."

 Clearly, this move was to rally support of the autonomy issue from the schools that would remain in Division 1 if the Division 4 were to be created. The schools that would be left out with the creation of the new D4 will certainly be heard if they cry out in favor of autonomy for the major conferences.

In August, the NCAA will vote on the restructuring of the D1 program. Hopefully, the sleeping giant will awake to its senses, and grant autonomy, and not cut the throat of the remaining D1 schools.

Want to be in the middle of an earthquake? Or, nah?