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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Congrats Daniel Carlson!

It was A Day 2014 and I was walking back to my car along the "Tiger Walk" trail and a player with number 38 on his jersey and a helmet in his hand said hello to me and we started to talk briefly about my time at Auburn University and I welcomed him to the campus. He told me that he was a place kicker from Colorado and his name was Daniel Carlson. We then parted ways and I wished him well. Of course, this morning Daniel Carlson has now tied the field goal record at Auburn University after another classic football game with LSU. 

Congratulations Daniel!

"Six Kicks" - The LSU Game

I am not the person who made this name. No, I'm not that smart. That honor goes to @EvilCamNewton

In the end, as with most games with our biggest rivals, the games seem to name themselves. 

In 2013 in probably the best college football game of all time, Auburn punt return specialist Chris Davis took a 109 yard gallop through the dreams of our most intense rivals. That game was named the "Kick Six."

This past week we were reminded of the 20th Anniversary of the "Barn Burning" game with LSU, the team Auburn defeated Saturday 18 - 13. 

So it seems when Auburn faces historically big games for its program, the dramatic story lines always make an appearance. Saturday night was no exception.

Daniel Carlson, who Gus Malzahn calls "the best kicker in all of college football" connected on six Field Goal tries. Carlson, who also handles the kickoff duties for Auburn did not allow a single return of any kickoff by placing the deep into, or through the end zone each time. 

If there were any doubt as to Carlson's ability, that should be laid to rest. Daniel firmly planted his foot high atop the running for the Lou Groza Award. An award granted annually to the best kicker in college football.

On To The Game

There were signs of improvement in the offense, and Auburn defense continues to get better each week.

Auburn had more first downs, more drives into the red zone than LSU, and doubled LSU's passing yards. 

Sean White had the kind of game that makes you smile. 19 of 26 for 234 yards and zero interceptions. 

The big sticking point is not getting TD's in the red zone. A problem Gus Malzahn insists will continue to get a lot scrutiny and work in practice. 

The big plus? Auburn wins! That's good enough for me.

War Eagle!

"We're In It With" Our fans

After an amazing win tonight, Gus Malzahn met with the media. 

Some have dubbed this game: The "Six Kicks"

Sunday, September 18, 2016


I was in Auburn on Friday visiting friends and their seemed to be an air of confidence that Auburn could beat Texas A & M on Saturday night as I roamed around the campus. 

My compliments to Full Moon Bar-B-Que for the great turkey sandwich and potato salad. 

I must say that the Texas A & M fans are the best in the SEC West. The ones that I met were complimentary of the Auburn campus and the football team. I really had to question what I was hearing after dealing with the fans from other SEC schools.

Klell and I decided to post our thoughts about the game Saturday night:

Randy: Auburn looked great on the first series and I actually thought that Texas A & M would be in for a long night.

Klell: Auburn's defense was in the Aggie backfield all night. Although they only recorded one sack, the Aggie QB, Trevor Knight had to resort to running and improvising quite a bit. 

Randy: The Auburn offensive line play was average and Sean White seldom had the time to find receivers. He was under stress most of the night and the Texas A & M pass rush seemed to bother him. I could see in his eyes that he seemed to question some of the play calling.

Klell: Kamryn Pettway gained 123 yards on 20 carries and a 6.1 yard per carry average. I was impressed with the way he ran the ball. 

Randy: Sean White is a good QB, but he was a pocket passer in high school. Since Gus Malzahn recruited him, he should be given an opportunity to run an offense that is suited to his playing style. I saw some blocks missed that could have translated into long gains if he had just been given time to throw the ball. 

Sean White had only had 126 passing yards. Tony Stevens had a career high 8 catches for 86 yards.
 As we observed in the Clemson game, Auburn's defense played well enough to win the game, but the offense was anemic. Auburn's defensive line played well and put pressure on Trevor Knight all night long. The defense spent a lot of time on the field since the Auburn offense was unable to move the ball and seemed to bad faced with a series of 3 and outs.

Klell: The biggest item that stands out to me is the Auburn Defense. This unit continues to show improvement. Only a couple missed tackles were evident, but this team has improved in tackling over the past couple of teams.

Randy:  John Franklin did enter the game to add a spark to the offense, but it was too late. An opposing defense does have to make adjustments when he enters the game. The verdict is still out on his passing game and ability to read a defense. He may get the start next Saturday against LSU.

In conclusion.

Randy: Once again, my Alma mater is faced issues surrounding the performance of the football team. Auburn  still has an opportunity to have a respectable football season if they can defeat LSU this Saturday. As a friend told me that the LSU offense is a "hot mess" and we all know that Les Miles is under fire. This game will define the rest of the season for Auburn. If Auburn wins, they could possibly win 8 games. If Auburn loses, the team confidence could be shattered.

Klell: If the 2016 Auburn offense can find it's game, this team can be dangerous. I have a feeling that they are close, but having a terrible time putting it together on the field. Somewhere between the showing against Clemson, and the game vs. Arkansas State is where they are. Lets hope that this week, against LSU they put together a complete offensive performance.

Keep the faith and War Eagle!

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Auburn's "First"

It was a night of "First" for this Auburn team. What a night it was.

Auburn's offense got its groove back last night in convincing fashion as it put up 452 yards in the first half alone on Arkansas State on its way to the first victory of the 2016 season. 

We witnessed one of the best catches of the football season thus far. The first of many we should see from Kyle Davis as he leapt high into the air with a DB hanging on one arm. Davis snagged the Sean White pass with one hand.

We saw the first fake Field Goal attempt, and toss to a running Daniel Carlson for a touchdown. Shades of Tommy Tuberville from Gus Malzahn.

We saw the first carries of Kamryn Pettway, and Kam Martin too. 

Auburn finished the night with 32 first downs, 244 yards passing, and a whopping 462 yards rushing for a grand total of 702 yards total offense, while crushing the visiting Red Wolves 51 to 14.


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Tackling & Shaving: Kevin Steele

Brighter days are ahead for Auburn

Very impressed with the Auburn defensive performance against Clemson. The visiting Tigers were held to just 248 yards passing, and 151 yards rushing. 

Last season Clemson averaged 223 yards rushing and 291 yards passing. 

Deshaun Watson and a group of experienced Wide Outs were held to just 19 points and more importantly zero deep passes for TD's

 Considering the experience Clemson returned offensively, this was an outstanding game by this Auburn defense.

Thanks to for the video

How long does it take to get over a close loss like the Clemson game? Auburn starting prepping for Arkansas State early Sunday morning. 

Lets get ready to whip the Red Wolves, and get better.

War Eagle!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Don't Count Out Auburn, There's Fight in That Tiger

Most of you all who know me know I am a self-proclaimed sunshine-pumper. I am happy with that, too. There are enough critics and armchair coaches. There isn't enough room on the couch for all of the negative opinions, so here are some things that were great from the game Saturday night.

This is in no particular order, except how it pops into my head.

Picture from my personal collection @tatershell
1. The defense. Whoa! Were they terrific or what?  There were some individuals that stood out to me, and I will get to those. I am curious how they will do against other offenses, but I am super impressed with how they played, their energy, and their ability to work as a  unit. The defense played SO WELL that the linemen did not even stand out. They played as a whole. I was impressed.

2. Kerryon Johnson. That kid can play. He is quick, he's a leader, and he's a playmaker.  Give him a little room and he takes a mile. He spoke well after the game. I am proud to call him an Auburn Tiger.

3. Deshuan Davis. Full disclosure here- Deshaun is one of my prayer guys, and I also watched him play in high school. He was injured his senior year and did not play. Auburn redshirted him his freshman year, and then he played some last year. He was ALL OVER the field Saturday night. I noticed several plays he made but then when I watched the AFR, I noticed him even more. Wow!

4. Josh Holsey. What a story there. I was very happy to see him making an interception. He's a fighter and its awesome to see Auburn D getting some takeaways.

5. Carlton Davis- What the heck!!! He was terrific. He may not have always been able to prevent the receiver from catching a pass, but he made sure that player didn't go any more downfield.

6.  Daniel Carlson. I think it goes without saying, but wow that was a long field goal. I know he can kick it longer than that too, but when the camera showed the field view, it looks almost impossible. Not for our Daniel, huh?

7. Stanton Truitt- He moves great. He made some awesome runs and made some plays when it did not look like there was a play.

8. Marcus Davis.  Made some fantastic catches. I think it is his time for a big year.

9. The team. They didn't quit. They got better in the 2nd half. This may not seem like much, but we have all seen teams where once it went back, there was no coming back from it.

10. Cam. In a Bo jersey. 

There were loads of other individual players who made big plays.  Nick Ruffin,  Ryan Davis, Will Hastings,  Trey Matthews, Chandler Cox and more all made huge plays.  

Are there things that need work? You bet.  However, all of that has been said over and over again. Don't count our guys out just yet. 


Auburn Football Review: Clemson

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Kerryon Johnson proud of Auburn's fight against Clemson

Gus Malzahn speaks to the media following hard fought loss to Clemson

Auburn Defense + What Was That?

Jordan Hare Stadium 1 hour prior to kickoff. photo by Marsha Willis
The Sun came up on Sunday morning just like nothing had ever happened.

Auburn fielded an extremely efficient defense last night against one of the more powerful offenses in the country from a year ago. Heisman candidate DeShaun Watson, and  Clemson were held well below their averages in Scoring, and Total Offense from a year ago.

Deshaun Watsonwas 19 of 34for 248 yardswith 1 TD and 1 Int. 

Better yet, the Auburn defense held Watson to just 21 rushing yards on 11 attempts.

As for Auburn's offense against Clemson last night, I keep asking myself one question: What was that!?

Honestly, I can not accurately describe what I witnessed. The only sure thing, was if a QB got a hot hand, he was sure to be replaced. 

It wasn't a matter of if a QB was going to be substituted into the game. Guessing which QB would be next, was. 

Looking at the stats from the game several things stand out to me. 

NINE PENALTIES! That's right 9 penalties for 60 yards. That's nearly one complete offensive possession for an opponent.

Zero sacks. The D-line was awesome versus the run, and Watson was contained as well as I thought he had to be. Auburn never got to Watson to bring him down in a passing situation.

87 Yards Rushing.  This was one of my keys to Auburn winning the game. There were times when Auburn ran the ball well. There just wasn't enough times to make an effective difference. 

All in all Auburn had a chance to win the game at the end. There is something positive to be said for this. The defense played outstanding, and many Auburn faithful are pleased to see it. 

Clearly, Auburn has a long way to go in terms of offense and the production of that unit. They have exactly one week to figure things out. Arkansas State is loaded with former SEC players, and they will be head hunting.

Until next time,


Saturday, September 3, 2016

Auburn Football: Every Day: Episode 1

The moment of truth for Auburn Football has arrived

I was in Auburn on Friday to see a few friends and enjoy the atmosphere in Auburn on a Friday before a game. Here are a few photos that I took as I moved around the Auburn campus. The Clemson fans that I did encounter did not have much to say about the game on Saturday night. Of course, we did talk about the 2010 game that Auburn won 27-24 in overtime. I was at that game and you could hear the contact in the stands that night. That was probably the most physical football game that I have witnessed.

Auburn does lead the series with Clemson 34-13-2 and Auburn has not lost at home against Clemson since 1950. I do expect to see a good game tonight and I think that this game will be the turning point for the Gus Malzahn era.

By the way, I urge you to go watch the Auburn girls soccer team play when you are in Auburn. They played Iowa State on Friday night and it was good to see the stadium full. If you are still in Auburn on Sunday, the Auburn girls will play the USC Trojans at 6 p.m.

Wad Eagle!

Keys to Tonight's Matchup vs Clemson

The BIG Screen at Jordan-Hare. photo by:

By now you've all heard the pundits claim Auburn hasn't a chance tonight in Jordan-Hare Stadium. Don't listen to their drivel.

Two key factors will determine Auburn's fate.

1. Auburn must run the ball well. Period.

  Utilizing the strength of a massive offensive line against an inexperienced defensive front for the Tigers by the Lake. Auburn doesn't need to throw the ball for 300 yards, or to have Sean White carry as many times as Nick Marshall did in 2013. Kerryon Johnson and company need to hang onto the rock, and move the chains.

2. Auburn must be able to harass DeShaun Watson with the defensive line. 

 If Auburn can keep Watson somewhat contained, it will be a long night for Clemson. 

 Will they keep Clemson from scoring? Highly doubtful. But if Watson has time to run around, the Auburn DB's will have a difficult time covering the Clemson wide outs.

In conclusion I'll say it this way. If Auburn can hold onto the ball, run the ball effectively, and keep Watson from extending plays, they can win this game. 

All that's left is the kickoff. Protect this house!

War Eagle!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Auburn Tiger Walk Video

Will Hastings: Unlikely Choice at WR

Expert opinions are worth every bit of the paper they are wrote on. Since 95% of all the college football predictions aren't written on paper anymore, the predictions aren't worth much. Mine included. Probably more so, since my predictions very seldom pan out. 

Auburn signed what is arguably the number one Wide Out group in the country last February. Many, including myself, were predicting that one or more of the true Freshmen would start the first game. Those predictions were based on the lack of game experience the Tigers have at this position.

Not so much.

Case in point? Yeah, Will Hastings. Hastings is listed at 5' 10" and 172 pounds. Yes, he did kick off in a game last season. Against LSU.

Here are his high school highlights: 

Saturday night in Jordan-Hare Stadium, young Mr. Hastings will get the start against Clemson. "Based on what they did in fall camp" says Auburn's offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee. 

War Eagle!