Tuesday, May 26, 2009

New Coach, Different Expectations???

Many Auburn fans tend to have different expectations of what this upcoming season will bring to the plains. Some are measured in wins and losses and some are measured in how this team grows and matures during the season. It is always fun this time of year to throw a number of how many wins are acceptable and then look back on it after the season is finished and see if that really stacks up to what you thought before the season began. Take for instance the 2006 Season. I would be willing to bet that most people would have taken 11 victories including the bowl game and felt pretty good about it in June, but I wonder how most fans felt after the Nebraska game and about where the program was heading in January of 2007? While it is fun to do this exercise in any month that doesn’t involve any form of football being played, I don’t believe it tells the truth about what we will feel about our team come January or the end of November for some or most.

What should Auburn fans expect with Gene Chizik as the new head coach and all the changes that have taken place in the football program since late November? I believe we should expect this team to play hard and show improvement from week to week. Showing improvement doesn’t always result in wins, but it sets a solid foundation for what is to come in the future. I measure improvement in how the team plays together and how it responds to similar situations that it has faced earlier in the season, such as correcting the missed assignments & silly penalties, being able to make plays and preventing one team from writing the book on how to stop you and broadcasting it to anyone watching that has a pulse. Coach Chizik is a more hands on coach and I believe that style of coaching is needed these days. If you look at the coaches that are currently winning championships, they are all hands on coaches in some way or another whether it is offense, defense or special teams, but they also have the ability to surround themselves with good assistant coaches, especially ones that are not in their line of “expertise”.

In the Spring of 2006 I had dinner with a coach that, at the time, had coached with or for Coach Chizik at Auburn and Texas. Texas had just won the National Title game and I was catching up with this friend and enjoying his stories about their just completed BCS Championship run. This coach made it a point to tell me that Coach Chizik loved Auburn and that he considered it Coach Chizik’s dream job based on what Coach Chizik had shared with him, even after winning the BCS Championship at Texas. That surprised me and I never forgot it. I wanted to share this with you because I do believe us Auburn Fans have someone at Auburn that cares as deeply about our football program as we fans do. Does that translate into wins and championships? Absolutely not, but I do believe that it is easier to sell something you are passionate about than to sell something you are forced to, and selling the program is half the battle with coaching being the rest.

I believe we Auburn Fans need to look past the win / loss record this year to judge how our team has truly fared. I believe that we have the talent and ability to compete with most teams in the SEC, especially at the starting positions, but I believe that we do not have the depth at several areas and that will require us Auburn Fans to be patient (something most SEC Football Fans have trouble with) and allow Coach Chizik the time to develop our younger players and acquire more talent in future recruiting classes in order to make us competitive for titles once again. I will admit that I was not very pleased when I learned that Coach Chizik was our Head Coach, but after seeing the staff he has put together and his immediate impact in recruiting, I am looking forward to seeing what kind of brand of football he will be bringing to the field in future Saturday’s this Fall.

I’m interested to hear your expectations and how you will evaluate this Season as a success, so please drop a line the comment section. Thanks for stopping by and War Eagle!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Should Auburn name True Freshman Starting QB????

With six quarterbacks on scholarship at the start of fall practice (assuming Tyrik Rollison and Clint Moseley qualify and clear the NCAA Clearinghouse), you would expect Auburn to have some depth at the position. Appearances are quite deceiving in this case. Anyone who has watched the Tigers play the last three years can vouch that Auburn has nothing more than numbers heading into the fall. With spring practices come and gone without a starter being named, it can only lead you to believe that we are struggling at that position. Coach Chizik has stated that a starter will not be announced until late August which leads me to believe that the true freshman's are going to receive more than a courtesy look.

If Tyrik Rollison comes in and is able to compete and be remotely close production wise to what Kodi Burns and Neil Caudle has been with the 15 practice head start, then I believe Tyrik should be named the starter. My reasons you ask, well they are simple. First off is that this year is not going to be a championship type year for our Auburn Tigers and secondly, it provides street cred with future recruits. I am trying to not discount Clint Moseley, but I believe he has redshirt written all over him, and with this offensive line, we are going to need someone more mobile.

Auburn has not named a true freshman starting quarterback since Gabe Gross took the reigns in the 1998 season. There is a reason that true freshmen do not start, especially in the SEC and that is the lack of championships. The last true freshman to lead his team to an SEC Championship would be...get back to me when you come up that answer, I'm pretty sure it hasn't happened in my lifetime, but I could be wrong. The list of first time starters to win championships is limited, but there are some notable ones: DJ Shockey (Senior) with Georgia in 2005, Rex Grossman (RS-Freshman) with Florida in 2000, Tee Martin (Junior) with Tennessee (Also won National Championship) and technically Danny Wuerffel (Sophomore) with Florida in 1994 even though he played some in the 1993 Championship season. Out of that list, only Danny Wuerffel saw significant playing time during his freshman year, which still proves what I am trying to say, and that is that first time qb's that win championships in the SEC usually have experience before they are completely handed the reigns by either playing sparingly or being in a system long enough to understand it. With all that being said, I think this is perfect timing for Rollison to step in and be the starting quarterback, because he will gain valuable playing experience this year when things will more than likely be rough and be ready to be that Championship QB in 2010 or 2011. If Kodi Burns or Neil Caudle as Junior's are not much better than Tyrik Rollison as a true freshman, then why have either one them start the next two years to only have to go thru the typical learning progression of a rookie qb when the talent that possibly surrounds him could be Championship quality. It would be nice to have a veteran QB leading the Tigers in three years versus a redshirt Sophomore or true Junior and it would allow Auburn to possibly make a Championship run.

The second benefit of playing Rollison as a true freshman is getting the needed street cred to help push some more high profile recruits Auburn's way. Playing true freshman is always a good selling point to future prospects and if Auburn is willing to play a true freshman as a quarterback, then Auburn is willing to play anybody given that they are good enough to play, and that is all that kids these days are wanting to hear and searching for.

Thanks for giving me your time for my two cents on the matter and please keep checking back for future posts. Feel free to leave comments in the comment section.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Welcome everyone to my brand spanking new blog. This will be my first shot at doing something of this nature, so with that, thanks for stopping by.

My name is Eddie McCoy and I was lucky enough to be part of the Auburn Football Family from Fall of 1996 till Spring of 2000 mostly as a Football Manager. I served as Rick Trickett's offensive line manager from Fall of 1996 until he left at the end of the 1998 season, served as Hugh Nall's Offensiveline Manager for just the Spring of 2000 and I spent the rest of my time on the Plain's as a videographer filming and cutting up football practices and games. I have been thru the end of the Bowden era and the very beginning of the Tuberville era. I have very fond memories and interesting perspective's on my time at Auburn and I hope to share that along with my general thoughts on what is happening with Auburn Football in this blog.

Currently, I reside in Villa Rica, Georgia (just outside Atlanta) and I have a growing hate toward the dawgs that live in this very same state. I usually make it to a majority of the games (home and away), but life with two young daughter's and a very understanding wife have slowed that down the last couple of years, but I am set to attend 10 games this year already, should I decide to go see the powder puff game that Jay Jacobs has scheduled.

Thanks for stopping by and please stop in and keep checking for future posts.

War Damn Eagle!