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Sunday, September 28, 2014

Quan Bray Helps Auburn Defeat Louisiana Tech

Quan Bray certainly was the offensive player of the game. His Mom is his inspiration. If you don't know his story Brandon Marcello did an excellent piece about Mr. Bray.

What a win! 

Whether or not you think the win over La Tech was pretty, this was a great Homecoming victory for may reasons. Let's start with the 300th victory in Jordan-Hare Stadium. That alone is incredible. Maybe we should do a post listing all 300 of them?

Next, and I want you to think about this one, every single team that Auburn plays this season is putting a big emphasis on giving us their very best. Not just because we went to the BCS Championship last season either. One of the deciding factors for the new playoff committee will be head to head comparisons. That puts even more meaning to regular season games. Example: If Auburn and Texas A & M end up close at the 4th position for the committee, the difference could be the win over South Carolina, and who looked the best in their victory over the Gamecocks. The Aggies certainly looked impressive vs USCe.

One more thing to consider, our offensive line had another injury at the beginning of the game. Patrick Miller left the game, and a shuffle ensued.

For all the griping you may have heard, the offensive numbers looked really good to me. Here is the official websites stats of the game:

FIRST DOWNS...................       14       23
  Rushing.....................        5       14
  Passing.....................        7        9
  Penalty.....................        2        0
NET YARDS RUSHING.............      105      254
  Rushing Attempts............       33       48
  Average Per Rush............      3.2      5.3
  Rushing Touchdowns..........        2        1
  Yards Gained Rushing........      132      285
  Yards Lost Rushing..........       27       31
NET YARDS PASSING.............      216      219
  Completions-Attempts-Int....  20-35-1  14-22-0
  Average Per Attempt.........      6.2     10.0
  Average Per Completion......     10.8     15.6
  Passing Touchdowns..........        0        4
TOTAL OFFENSE YARDS...........      321      473
  Total offense plays.........       68       70
  Average Gain Per Play.......      4.7      6.8
Fumbles: Number-Lost..........      3-1      0-0
Penalties: Number-Yards.......     5-40     5-51

Obviously, penalties hurt, and they need to be corrected, but overall, this was an impressive performance by the offensive line that has yet to gel as a unit for various reasons.

Gus recaps the victory over La Tech.

Do you remember the sign stealing accusations that were being talked about after we beat KState? ESPN went on and on for two days about how Auburn's coaches stole the signals that K State uses to call plays.

Well it seems that Bill Snyder, the coach of the Wildcats made a statement about that.

 "They may have had awareness to what some of our signals were and
confidently we had the ability to change them. That's extremely common
in athletics. That's just part of the game. It is not 'stealing.' That's
the way of the game, coached and conducted.". 

I for one, am very happy it's LSU week on the Plains. Corndogs anyone?

War Eagle!

35 Seconds with Tahj Shamsid-Deen

I usually do not pose for photos, but the owners of the Auburn "War Wagon" offered to take this photo yesterday. If you do see the vehicle parked in Auburn, please feel free to inquire. It was a great day to be on campus and now comes the games of October and November. I plan to buckle up my seat belt and enjoy the games.
War Eagle!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Prayers 4 Players

Prayer Circle at Kansas State. photo by unknown source

Anyone who has read any blog by me knows that I refer to "Facing the Giants" quite often. It is actually what gave me the idea for the prayer group Prayers4Players.

The scenes in the movie where the older man is touching each locker, praying for the students as he goes along. I was watching that movie, and it just struck me, What if we prayed for every Auburn player every week?  

That was 2012, and everyone remembers that year. We started that year, but it did not seem like it was helping or making a difference. The bottom line is that there were some foundations laid then. Also we have to remember prayer can have eternal answers not just earthly ones.  

If anyone knows student assistants for the football team, I would love to add their names to our prayer group. As I said before, this is not about wins. It is about so much more than wins.

I wanted one more time to mention the Prayers4Players group. It is never too late to join. As with the movie, the prayers are not necessarily about wins, although it is nice when it happens. 

I know I have blogged about this topic several times, but this is something that is on my heart.   

Since I do not know any of the players personally, I, like most of the group get my information for prayer needs based on their twitter or interviews. I know our players hurt and experience joy- only they often have to do it in front of others.  I see the players respond when our group is letting them know we are praying for them. 

 Almost every time I let them know via twitter, I see them favorite it or retweet or reply with a thanks.  If you want to be a part of it, it is not too late.  I think we have something really special going on. 

You can email me at - If you don't feel you can commit to it weekly, but would still like to participate, please let me know.

If for some reason you don't hear from me, please let me know on twitter where I am @tatershell


Friday, September 19, 2014

"Plains Proud" Auburn Tiger

This was written by a friend of mine!!  I hope it strikes a chord in your Auburn  Heart!!  It sure did mine!!!  
WAR EAGLE.  The Poetic Tiger

photo by CrashMatt

"Plains Proud" Auburn Tiger

I sit and ponder after watching last game,
What will happen to Auburn in 2014?

Last year was a cleansing, a revival of sorts,
From our team and a man that brought hope called Coach Gus!!!

We face bulldogs and rebels and elephants, Oh my! 
But I am an Auburn Tiger with a Mighty Eagle at my side!!!

We fight our battles on fields made of turf,
Through heat and storms and injuries we push!
Adversity I have faced both on and off the field!!!

Toomers, my corner, thought lost for all years;
A place for generations, my fans to enjoy;
That we showed to the world no mere man could ever destroy!!!

So no matter the outcome one thing always rings loud,
That I am an Auburn Tiger, War Eagle and "Plains Proud"!!!


Author Suzette Dye

Womens Tennis Miami Invitational Preview

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Very Good/Not So Good Road Win

I am not impressed. Not at all. 

Dropped passes, jumping off sides while lined up right over the center, pass interference penalties galore. With all of that going on, how could I be impressed?

Auburn went on the road, and beat a Top 20 team with an off week to prepare. The Tigers squeaked out a victory 20 -14 over the Kansas State Wildcats. I thought this was going to be a statement game. Maybe a coming out party for this 2014 Auburn team. 

Kansas State had to come from behind to beat Iowa State on the road at Ames, Iowa. No disrespect to the Iowa State team, they just haven't been a very good team lately. The Wildcats are led by a legend in the coaching profession in Bill Snyder.

 In the last 20 years, Top 5 ranked teams have played nationally ranked teams at the lower ranked teams home, on a Thursday night 13 times. Those Top 5 teams are 8-5.Okay, so I feel a little better about this win.

Auburn was held to 128 total yards rushing. Kansas State sold out stopping the run daring Nick Marshall to throw the ball. The Tigers started out 0-5 on 3rd down conversions. Not good at all!

Once the passing game finally got it's legs under it, the offense started looking a little better. Okay, a lot better. Finishing the game the Auburn offense went 10 of 13 on 3rd down conversions. That's impressive no matter who you're playing. Maybe I was so distracted with that horrid start, that I missed the finish. I am starting to feel very good about this win.

We will have more later. War Eagle!

Here are some stats provided by the official Auburn Athletics website.

Quick Stats
 Total Plays
 1st Downs
     3rd down efficiency
     4th down efficiency
 Total Yards
 Passing Yards
     Yards per pass
 Rushing Yards
     Rushing attempts
     Yards per rush
     Fumbles lost
     Interceptions thrown
 Time of Possession

AUET: UT-Martin Preview

Monday, September 15, 2014

Auburn Tigers/Kansas State Wildcats---Thursday Sept 18 2014

With an extra week to study,
And an extra week to prepare;
We face our biggest challenge this year,
Far away from Jordan- Hare!!!

Many eyes will be upon us,
As we perform on the national stage!!
The native crowd there will be restless;
And the wildcats full of rage!!

Our Auburn Tigers are a brotherhood of men,
Who are unafraid of a Big 12 team!!
We are ready for the fight to begin,
We have a winning scheme!!!

Our coaching staff has a unique plan 
To keep us fresh and focused on the field,
While wearing them down, man to man, 
Our Auburn a tigers will never yield !!!!

Be sure to expect the unexpected!!
Malzahn's play book is set to amaze!!
As we razzle dazzle the wildcats;
Keeping them confused and dazed!!

We will go to work to settle their waters, 
Bottling it up and keeping it contained!!
Our constant speed will leave them exhausted;
And their energy will soon be drained!!

Then we'll head home in jubilation,
Where Toomer's Corner will be draped in white!!
Our Auburn Tigers are the best in the SEC Nation;
And we will never give up the fight!!!!!

Poetic Tiger

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Looking Toward Thursday Night

Toomer's Corner will get rolled Thursday night

Bye weeks, the double edged sword of the college football season. On one edge we have the much needed break for the team. On the other, we have the off week blues as fans. This bye week however, was much different than many of the past. 

Many exciting games were played this past Saturday. 

Penn State had all it wanted from a scrappy Rutgers squad. A late 4th quarter 80 yard drive for a TD sealed their 2014 B1G Conference opener. The Nittany Lions control their own destiny in the struggling B1G (Big10).

The class of the day was saved for late Saturday evening, as the Florida Gators needed a lucky break, and 3 OT's to put away the resurgent Kentucky Wildcats.

The most anticipated game in the 2014 Auburn football season is coming up on Thursday night against a Big 12 legend. Coach Bill Snyder and his 19th ranked Kansas State Wildcats. This will be Auburn's first game against a nationally ranked opponent this season.From here, the schedule gets tougher.

This game will have its ups and downs, but Auburn should emerge the victor in Manhattan, Kansas.

War Eagle!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Aubie visits the Auburn Alumni Association

San Jose State Fan Talks Auburn

The following is from a FanCred account. Matt Self posted it there, and we want to share it with you.

"We went to dinner Saturday after the game - very small Chinese restaurant near our hotel. We were wearing our Spartan "gear" and as we were ready to leave a young man sitting at the table behind us (he sort of didn't fit in the booth) spoke to us as we were leaving.

He asked us if we came from San Jose for the game and we told him that yes, indeed we did. He thanked us for coming all the way to the game and hoped that we were having a nice time while in Auburn.
We said we were--all except the results of the game. He then dropped the fact that he is on the team.
He is Patrick Miller, #51, OL, Junior. He weighs 297# and stands 6'7".

Then, he went on to say some things that I think you all should know.

First and foremost - he thought Travis Raciti was "the real deal". He also complimented our players for never giving up. We continued talking for a few more minutes. He ended the conversation by saying that the Auburn team as a whole thought that the Spartans were a much better team and specifically mentioned our defense than their first opponent, Arkansas Razorbacks. He said we really do have a good team and that we will get better as the season continues.

He wished us good luck for the rest of the season and I promised him that I would especially follow him the rest of his football career at Auburn.
He said goodbye and hoped we would have a safe trip home. We thanked him for his kind wishes and went back to the hotel talking about how he certainly did not have to say anything to us at all and to talk to us for about 10 minutes went far above what we expected. We were very impressed with him.

He truly was one of the highlights of our trip."

Coach Russell Interview

photo courtesy of Infinity Architecture

Recently Auburn's strength and conditioning coach Ryan Russell was interviewed by ASAP, the Athletic Strength And Power folks.

It's easy to see why Gus Malzahn picked Coach Russell. He's a driven man with lots of energy. Watch as he answers the questions. Listen to his passion for these young men to get better and stronger.

The following video is courtesy of A.S.A.P.

Marching Band Plays Glory to Ole Auburn

Monday, September 8, 2014

Auburn vs Kansas State - My Take

Bill Snyder Family Stadium. photo from Google images

Kansas State hasn't played some of college football's juggernauts in their first two weeks...the 101st ranked (according to Sagarin) Iowa State Cyclones and the 187th ranked FCS Stephen F Austin Lumberjacks.  

KState is led by QB Jake Waters, a 6' 1" 210 lb.senior. Waters has thrown for 462 yards on 35 of 57 passing with 2 TDS and 1 INT.  Waters is also the leading ground-gainer for the cats with 193 yards on 37 carries.

The stats on the surface seem impressive, but given the fact that Waters accounts for two-thirds of the KState offense, it would be safe to say, "stop Waters, stop KState." 

The only highlights we can find on K State are located HERE.

I do believe with 12 days to prepare, Ellis Johnson will iron out the "Dirty Dozen" plays that he says haunts the Auburn defense.

I am looking forward to the Thursday night match up and proving, once again, that Auburn deserves to be in the national conversation heading into the SEC stretch run.

Auburn Men's Basketball - Let's Do This Together (Pt.2)

Tigers Marching On

Coach Tuberville prior to Halftime tribute for 2004 team.
photo courtesy of Auburn Athletics Instagram

Last Saturday was a very special day in Auburn. The undefeated 2004 team was honored, the 2014 team worked out some issues against a heavily over matched opponent, and there wasn't any weather delays.

Did anyone notice just how loud that introductory response for former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville was?

Yes, there are concerns going forward as how much the Tigers are going to improve, if any. There are those, I among them, who wonder if this team can improve enough in 10 days to leave a favorable impression on the minds of those on the selection committee for the College Football Playoff. Why would they need to do that, you ask?

It will be 12 days before Auburn visits Kansas State, and then 8 more days before Auburn's Homecoming against La. Tech. Even worse, it will be 15 days after the trip to Manhattan, KS before Auburn plays another conference opponent, LSU. One big game in a 27 day span. The need for an impressionable victory is REAL!

At this juncture in the season, Auburn must win convincingly. No 4th Quarter comebacks, no tip passes for that last second win. This must be a total dismantling of the Kansas State squad, or the reality is, Auburn will suffer in the polls, and in the minds of those on the CFP committee. It's the world we live in now.

We previewed the match-up with Kansas State earlier. They have spent lots of money upgrading their facilities, and the Snyder Family Stadium. It will be full of ravenous Wildcat fans who would love nothing more than knock off an SEC team on national television.Here is to hoping they will be disappointed.

War Eagle!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

New technology helps protect Auburn football players

Auburn Basketball Visits the Hospital

Calm Before The Storm

image courtesy of @AUlteredEgo

We fought the elements on Saturday!
It was hot both on and off of the field!!
It was evident that Arkansas came to play!
But our AUburn men were unwilling to yield!!

The AUburn sun was beating down;
Proving almost too much to bear!!
But our tigers dug deep and strength was found;
To protect their home at Jordon-Hare!!

The Johnson / Williams duo worked great together;
While Payne and Grant ramped up the speed!!
Although the heat on the field was not all due to the weather;
A cooling rain would be a relief indeed!!

The halftime rest gave us time to reflect,
And allow some new strategies to form
Then, Marshall's passing and running took effect;
And there was a calm before the storm!!!!

With a streak of lightening, the weather got rough!
And soon the storm clouds began to roll in!!
Our men stayed focused, together and tough;
And Like the BOOM BOOM BOOM of thunder,
Our Tigers Secured their first win!!!!!

Its on now to another game day Saturday;
And we plan to take down the Spartans with a win!
We will hang tough and together with every play;
Then Toomer's Corner will be rolled once again!!!!

You can follow Poetic Tiger on Facebook HERE

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Women's Tennis Team Bonding

Offense Off to a Great Start

photo courtesy of: AUBURNFORLIFE

Last weekend our offense looked really sharp, right from the very first snap of the ball. I can honestly tell you, that I have never witnessed an Auburn offense start so strongly in the very first game, and the very first play, of a season. And the starter at QB was our back up Jeremy Johnson.

The start was so impressive head coach Gus Malzahn told Jeremy Johnson, "You're a stud." Johnson was 12 of 16 pass attempts for 243 yards, 2 TD's zero interceptions, and most impressively, zero sacks. That is a great day for most Auburn QB's of the past, and Johnson did this in the first half. 

Auburn put Arkansas away in the second half, and won the game handily as it turned out. Nick Marshall came in the second half, after serving his suspension for a violation of team rules, and picked right up from where he left off last season. 

The Auburn offense was very balanced. The Tigers could run or throw at ease. Below is the stat sheet from the official Auburn Athletics site. The outside column belongs to the good guys.

FIRST DOWNS...................       20       27
  Rushing.....................        9       15
  Passing.....................        9       11
  Penalty.....................        2        1
NET YARDS RUSHING.............      153      302
  Rushing Attempts............       29       48
  Average Per Rush............      5.3      6.3
  Rushing Touchdowns..........        1        3
  Yards Gained Rushing........      168      321
  Yards Lost Rushing..........       15       19
NET YARDS PASSING.............      175      293
  Completions-Attempts-Int....  18-31-1  16-22-0
  Average Per Attempt.........      5.6     13.3
  Average Per Completion......      9.7     18.3
  Passing Touchdowns..........        2        2
TOTAL OFFENSE YARDS...........      328      595
  Total offense plays.........       60       70
  Average Gain Per Play.......      5.5      8.5
Fumbles: Number-Lost..........      2-0      2-1

 They will be very difficult for our future opponents if this keeps up, and I hope it does.

Our next game is against San Jose State. We previewed them earlier this year, you can find that HERE.


Monday, September 1, 2014

Inside the College Marching Band

Pictures from my personal library @tatershell

Let's talk about one of my favorite parts of college football...the college marching band! Klell and others have been extremely gracious in previous posts about the band. 

Now, I love the Auburn band. My parents were in the Auburn band. They met there as a matter of fact. I wouldn't be here without it! 

I was in the band in college, but not at Auburn. I went to undergrad at Southern Miss. The band there was and is very large and important to the school. I loved every single second of it, but I am not going to lie, there were many times where the band might feel a little unappreciated. It is a lot of work. 

Last night, as I rode Tiger Transit back to Facilities parking area, I saw the band walking back to the band room/dorm/car, etc. A couple of girls about 13 or 14 years old commented on them walking with their heavy instruments. Of course, they were soaked to the core, even with the awesome ponchos. 

Can I tell you a little about how exhausting game day is for a band member? On Friday nights before the game, we had  A/B groups for 'Friday Nights at the Fountain', which was a community wide pep rally.  (Obviously held at the University Fountain). 

Sometimes, the football team couldn't even come because it came after their curfew.  This was after practice on Fridays. On game days, we had an early morning rehearsal or walk through. There were games where it was really early.  Sometimes we were required to go in small groups around tailgate areas and play. 

Depending on the time of the game, we had very little time before we were required to be in uniform for Eagle Walk. (You can guess) Eagle Walk is a little different from Tiger Walk in that the band, color guard, Dixie Darlings and some others did an actual parade around campus before coming to the 'tunnel' where the football team would join us. 

After Eagle Walk, we would get ready for pre-game. Then the game, halftime, game (no quarters off in college band) came before what we called 'The Fifth Quarter' where we played some of our halftime music and other crowd favorites.  Fifth quarter was actually one of my favorite things we did. 

Most of our family and friends would come stand on the field while we played the favorites in the stands. Then the director gave some instructions about practice the next week. For us, it was 3 days a week for away games we were NOT going to and 4 days a week for home games or away trips we where we were going.  As you saw last night, the band stays out in all sorts of weather. Perk? Awesome ponchos.  

Even with ponchos, try to picture being wet in thick uniforms after sitting in baking sun!! Now when all this was finally done, you hike back to the music building to put away instruments that are larger. If you played a smaller instrument, you usually just took it with you. We weren't allowed to park anywhere near the stadium, so we usually had a trek after a really long day.  None of this is meant as any complaint but I thought you might not know some of the things that go on game day.  

It was an incredible experience to be a part of things. I would not trade a single second of it, including playing in deluges, tropical storms, long bus trips, exhibition shows, or playing on a flooded field where the water was up to my ankle! I got to travel to a bunch of stadiums that I wouldn't have seen otherwise. 

We did exhibition shows at Saints games. I also got to travel to places including Ireland and England. So the next time you go to a game, make sure you remember the long day the band has already had before game time and give them a big cheer!

Auburn Tigers Enter Field in 2014 Opener