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Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Auburn/Ole Miss Halloween Football Game Summary

It was another exciting Auburn/Ole Miss Halloween football game. Despite the records of both teams when they do meet, you can just never predict the outcome. I can still remember that Auburn was supposed to lose this game according to the talking heads of the various sports networks at the beginning of this season. I actually made notes on this game to ease some of the stress from watching the back and forth offensive plays by both teams. I just had a feeling that Auburn and Ole Miss would give the fans 4 full quarters of college football as I waited for the game to begin on Saturday. The reports that I received indicated that the "Grove" was festive as usual prior to this game. This game is a good example of why an SEC team must have a good running and passing game to win consistently in SEC.

Here are some of my observations on this game.

1) The Ole Miss coaching staff did their homework on the Auburn defense and Chad Kelly proceeded to throw a series of short passes to combat the Auburn pass rush. The Ole Miss receivers were open for much of the first half, but Auburn made adjustments in the second half and Ole Miss only scored one touchdown. Chad Kelly ended the night with 465 passing yards. As Cole Cubelic pointed out last night, there have been 8 other notable QBs who have thrown for 400 yards when playing Auburn and lost.

2) It was obvious from the start of the game that Auburn planned to run plays with a heavy dose of running and some passing. Auburn ran a total of 74 plays(52 rushing and 22 passing) to 90 plays for Ole Miss and finished with 247 passing and 307 rushing yards.

3) Kamryn Pettway continues to impress with his running talent. He had 230 yards rushing and it was apparent that the Ole Miss defensive players wanted no part of trying to tackle him as the game progressed. Mr. Pettway now has 933 rushing yards and did not even play against Clemson or ULM. He is a third year sophomore so we will be able to see him run for another year before he plays on Sunday. 

4) Kerryon Johnson rushed for 41 yards and 2 TDs and seemed to be recovering well from the ankle injury. 

5) Auburn finally used the tight end when Jalen Harris caught his first career pass on a 15 yard touchdown play. He was wide open on this play and walked into the end zone after the catch. I am told that this play is called "Fight Song".

6) Sean White played a great game and seemed to be calling audibles at the line. He seems to be reading defenses well and knows where his receivers are located. He finished the game with 247 yards passing and 27 yards rushing. 

7) Daniel Carlson is the best kicker that I have seen play at Auburn. He had 4 field goals and the longest kick was 47 yards. Some of you probably know that both of his parents are Alabama grads and he was not offered a scholarship by Alabama. I am just happy that he chose to play at Auburn.

8) The Josh Holsey interception with 7:21 left in the game was a turning point in this game. Auburn then proceeded to score another TD with a run by Kerryon Johnson.

9) The goal line stand in the second half was another critical defensive play. Ole Miss had the ball on Auburn's 3 yard line and they were stopped on a fourth and 1 by Devaroe Lawrence. 

10) Tray Matthews led the Auburn defense with 11 tackles and Deshaun Davis had 10 tackles.

A quote from Hugh Freeze last night. "They're one of the better teams in college football." They're going to be a tough out for a lot of people."

War Eagle and enjoy the ride!

Auburn Wins The War in Oxford

Saturday nigh in Oxford, MS the Auburn Tigers were in a war with Ole Miss. 

On the home team sideline, there was an experienced, quick and accurate gunslinger in Chad Kelly. In front of the second largest Ole Miss crowd in its history, Kelly led Ole Miss in a furious battle to salvage some respect and their season.

Auburn doesn't have an experienced gunslinger on it's offense. Not just yet. So the Tiger offense relied on a heavily armored battering ram to weaken the Ole Miss troops, and come home with the victory. 

Kamryn "Bubba" Pettway rushed for 236 yards on 30 carries. A Top 10 best rushing performance in Auburn history. 

Auburn outscored Ole Miss 40-29 in a wild western division showdown that saw the Rebels run 90 offensive plays. 

Video provided by

There were lots of heroes in this game. Several fan favorites had shining moments. Joshua Holsey and Jalen Harris to name just two. 

Holsey intercepted a Chad Kelly pass in the second half and returned the ball 47 yards where he was forced out at the Ole Miss 25 yard line. Setting up the Auburn offense with the opportunity it needed to to effectively put the game away.

This took a total team effort, and great leadership. Auburn had both tonight. 

War Eagle!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Auburn vs Ole Miss by the Numbers

Auburn leads this series with a 29-11 record versus the Rebels.

At Vaught-Hemingway, Auburn is 10-3

The last meeting: Ole Miss won 27-19 in 2015.

Auburn has won three of the last five and seven of the last ten.

Auburn averages scoring 27 points versus the Rebels while allowing an average of 14.

Largest margin of victory by Auburn in Oxford: (2004) 35-14.

Ole Miss is 1-3 in the SEC and 3-4 overall.  Ole Miss has one conference win over Georgia and non-conference wins over Wofford and Memphis.  The Rebels have conference losses against Alabama, Arkansas and LSU, coupled with a non-conference loss to Florida State.

Chad Kelly leads the SEC in passing with 2,067 yards on 153 completions out of 246 attempts, a 62.2% completion rate.

Evan Engram has been Kelly's favorite target, catching 40 passes for an SEC leading 605 yards.

Auburn is third in total offense in the SEC at 3,507 yards while Ole Miss is sixth at 3,180 yards.

Auburn is the leading rushing offensive team in the league while Ole Miss is the passing leader.

Auburn is averaging 302.86 rush yards per game (ranked first) while Ole Miss averages 148.86 yards per game (ranking them next to last).

LSU held Ole Miss to their lowest points output of the year last weekend with 21 points.  Ole Miss has averaged giving up 41 points in their four losses.

Auburn Football: Bowls, Playoffs, & The Future

The resurgence, for lack of a better word, of the Auburn Tigers football team has some folks talking about the future. 

Questions buzzin' around social media involve opponents toward the end of our schedule, playoffs, and a media favorite, Bowl projections. 

My first inclination is one of excitement. I am as happy as I can be that Auburn is playing good football. I also understand the season is already halfway over. So why exactly should I jump ahead to a game that comes at or near the end of our schedule?

Those games will come. Relish in the fact that all seems well, and be thankful they are.

I say we need to take one game at a time. Next up is Ole Miss. 

As for the playoffs, two things need to be considered. 
One, so far, no team with two loses has made the final four.  

Two, currently there are 6  undefeated teams in the Coaches Poll. Not all of which are ranked ahead of our Tigers. However, there are 5 teams ranked ahead of Auburn which only have one loss. The playoff mountain is a very steep climb for Auburn. 

When the CFP committee releases its first poll, then, and only then, can we look more accurately at the "IF"  in Auburn's chances at making the playoffs.

Gus has set all types of records at Auburn, will this be one of them? A fun question to be sure. 

Lets see how it all plays out. 


Auburn Women's Tennis honored for successful season

Monday, October 24, 2016

Auburn Football Review: Arkansas

The latest edition of The Auburn Football Review includes the Top 5 plays of the week. The number one play is red hot.

War Eagle!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

A "Hog Roast" in Auburn

This was my view a few weeks ago as I sat in the Auburn baseball stadium thinking about my days at Auburn and just enjoying the view. You can always spot several students studying in the baseball stadium and it is a great place to gather your thoughts. By the way, I suggest that you check out the new "Under Armour" sideline shirts at the J&M Bookstore. I picked up a blue one for game days. All of the Auburn coaches except Gus Malzahn was wearing the shirt in the orange at the Arkansas game last night.

I started  to go to this game, but Auburn always seems to lose to Arkansas when I do attend so I decided to stay home and watch this game on the HDTV at home. I did not hear anyone say that Auburn would blow out Arkansas. The guys on the Saturday morning show in Birmingham stated that the game could be close and that Auburn would win. Of course, the Arkansas players did not begin the day well by going to the Auburn 50 yard line prior to the game and confronting the Auburn players who were in their customary prayer circle. This is sacred ground for the Auburn players and I am sure that this event only added extra motivation for the Auburn players to win this football game.

The Auburn offense could not have played better. Auburn rushed for a record 543 yards which is an SEC record for rushing in a regular season SEC game. My game ball goes to Kamryn Pettway for his rushing performance of 192 yards and two touchdowns.  

At the start of this season, we were all wondering who would be running the football at Auburn after the departure of Jovan Robinson. It does seem that Auburn now has 4 running backs with Kamryn Pettway leading the pack. The  offensive line changes with Austin Golson at center and Darius James at left tackle have really helped the running game and pass protection. Sean White only had to throw the ball 11 times and finished the night with 77 yards passing which did include a 45 yard touchdown strike to multi talented Stanton Truitt. I think that Gus has finally decided on a QB. 

Auburn's defense was suffocating and only allowed 25 rushing yards and 187 passing yards with no touchdowns and 1 interception.  The Auburn defensive line harassed the Arkansas QB, Austin Allen all night long and recorded 4 sacks. I was surprised that Austin Allen remained in the game for Arkansas after the game was out of reach. It was obvious that he was hobbled and unable to throw the football effectively. The Auburn linebackers played well and had 20 tackles. Jeremy Sprinkle, the Arkansas star tight end only had 1 catch for 16 yards. His brother Daniel is a sophomore on Auburn's baseball team. 

Daniel Carlson did not kick any field goals last night, but was 8 for 8 on extra points and continued to kick the ball deep on kickoffs. We will be seeing Daniel on Sunday afternoons kicking field goals in the NFL. He is the best kicker that I have seen play at Auburn.

Auburn will now face Ole Miss next Saturday evening at 6:15 p.m. and I now wonder how many of the SEC talking heads will now pick Auburn to win that game. At the start of the season, no one expected Auburn to compete against Ole Miss. Ole Miss did lose one of their top defensive players last night in the game with LSU and Leonard Fournette had 284 rushing yards against the Ole Miss defense. I am now anxious to see how this Auburn rushing attack performs against the Ole Miss defense. I expect the Auburn defensive line to pressure Chad Kelly which will hopefully result a few turnovers and a win for Auburn. 

This Auburn Football team appears to be on a mission and I do expect some more surprises this season. 

War Eagle!

Brutal Beatdown

It was just that. Brutal. 
Auburn took Arkansas out back behind the woodshed, and whipped them severely.  The final score of 56 - 3 tells only part of the story.

The Tigers rushed for 543 yards, passed for 89 more and never turned the ball over. With 10 minutes to go in the game, Auburn had zero negative yardage plays. Zero. Although the Hawgs held the lead in time of possession, Auburn only punted three times the entire game.

Sean White was 7 of 12 for 89 yards. Efficient once again. 

That defense. My oh my, that defense!

Arkansas only had 25 yards rushing on 31 attempts. I have never seen a team average less than 1 yard per attempt rushing the ball. That is, until Saturday night in Jordan-Hare Stadium. 

The average gain per offensive play statistic is astounding in this game. Arkansas 3.4 yards per offensive play. Auburn averaged 9.2. You read that right.

This was a total annihilation of the Arkansas team, that came out pregame and stepped on the AU logo at midfield and disrupted the pregame prayer circle. That was all the motivation this Auburn team needed.

The BBQ roast was on, and the sweet taste was vict'ry.


Thursday, October 20, 2016

Lookin' at The Hawgs

With what seems like three weeks of computer problems behind me, fingers crossed, now we can get back to football, and all of the things that happened lately.

Kevin Steele talked with the media ahead of the Arkansas game.

Offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee met with the media s well.

Arkansas is usually a tough game for Auburn. This will go a long way in determining how our Tigers perform the rest of the season. 

A win Saturday night gives them HUGE momentum going to Ole Miss the next week. It also shows the critics that Gus has turned this young team around.

Look for more of the same from the offense with Rhett Lashlee & Sean White mixing up the plays, and throwing more than previous games against the Hawgs.

If the passing game works, the running game will have a few huge plays, and Auburn will win. Fingers crossed.


2016 SEC Basketball Media Day