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Friday, December 23, 2016

Auburn Takes Two & Basketball Hall of Fame Tour

A road trip for the ages. 

Prior to the start of this trip coach Bruce Pearl said the next two games would be a good barometer, a gauge if you will, as to just how far this team has come. Or, how far it has yet to go.

Game one saw the Tigers take on a 2016 Final Four team in Oklahoma. 

The victory came on another fantastic finish. The celebration was to be short lived because Auburn had to travel to UConn and be ready to play in just two days. The Huskies have claimed no less than Four National Championships.

Coach Pearl's post game comments were very joyful as you might expect. Pearl also reminded the media that this team won two games on the road while not playing a very good brand of basketball. 

I can't think of a better Holiday gift than knowing Auburn basketball is good again. Just how good is to be determined. 


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Dunans Buzzer Beater Victory

Auburn's T.J. Dunans had been in a slump of sorts to start the season. He just kept grinding. Working as hard as anybody on the team, Dunans slowly eased out of the quagmire. Hard work pays off.

This video courtesy of

This video courtesy of John Evans

The last second win came on a busted design play that Coach Chuck Person "drew up." Coach Bruce Pearl told the media.

This video courtesy of

A Young Team Now Even More So

Coach Bruce Pearl has stated from the start that this would be a very young Auburn basketball team. Those who follow along closely can attest this team has all the characteristics of a young team. Inconsistency being the easiest tell tale of evidence. 

Beating a good Texas Tech team one day, playing a highly ranked team in Purdue closely for the first half, and being blown away in the second. Then losing to a lowly considered Boston College in front of a national TV audience. And lately trouncing a usually tough Coastal Carolina 117-72. 

These young men are very talented, and will make a big run in the SEC this season. Will it be enough to make the annual NCAA basketball fun fest known as March Madness? Time will tell. This writer has every confidence that yes, they will be dancing come March.

Another piece to the puzzle was added this week. Austin Wiley, a highly ranked recruit, and son of former Auburn Basketball greats Vickie Orr and Aubrey Wiley. "That legacy is vast. Orr was an All-American and 1992 Olympic bronze medalist. Austin's father, Aubrey Wiley, led the SEC in rebounding in 1993-94." from the AUfficial website.

A young team that became even more young this week has increased it's basketball prowess. It's now even better than before. Thanks in large part to Bruce Pearl and his incredible staff. 


Saturday, December 10, 2016

A Sugar Bowl Memory

Toomer's after an Auburn vict'ry

As we await the Sugar Bowl, this bowl game does bring back some memories of my first year at Auburn in 1972.

Auburn and Oklahoma last met in the Sugar Bowl on January 1, 1972 in New Orleans at Tulane Stadium. Both teams were ranked in the top 5. Auburn lost to Alabama 31-7 in the last game of the season and finished with a 9-2 record. Oklahoma lost to Nebraska 35-31 who went on to defeat the Crimson Tide 38-6 in the Orange Bowl. Nebraska was undefeated and was crowned the National Champions. Yes, there was a time when Nebraska dominated college football.

This game featured two great quarterbacks. Pat Sullivan of Auburn and Jack Mildren of Oklahoma. I was a fan of both players and Jack Mildren went on to play defensive back in the NFL for the Baltimore Colts and New England Patriots.

Jack Mildren of Oklahoma  had a career day at quarterback. He ran the ball 30 times for 149 yards and 3 touchdowns. Oklahoma had 439 rushing yards and only 11 yards passing. They had a back named Greg Pruitt and they ran the "Wishbone" offense. Pat Sullivan did throw for 250 yards, but Auburn only had 40 yards rushing. Harry Unger, one of my classmates scored two rushing touchdowns in this game for Auburn. Auburn lost 40-22 giving Oklahoma their first Sugar Bowl win since 1950.

Of course, I am hoping for a better outcome at this "Sugar Bowl". I do expect a good offensive effort by Auburn, if all key players are healthy.