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12.30.2009

Examining the Matchup

Hey everyone. Been a busy day here at HABOTN's Tampa headquarters, where we're writing to fill up the Thursday and Friday sections of the Advertiser.

They'll be chock full'o goodies for you all.

You want a sample? I knew you did.

MATCHUP: Auburn run offense vs. Northwestern run defense
Advantage:

Gene Chizik promised an offense that was built to run and he didn't falter, watching his team average 214 rushing yards per game. The figurehead is tailback Ben Tate, who emerged as one of the Southeastern Conference's top players with a best-case scenario season.

He enjoyed good health, consistent blocking and finished with 1,254 yards. Not bad.

Onterio McCalebb provides an ideal complement when healthy. He was troubled during the final third of the season with a chronic ankle problem, but coaches believe six additional weeks of treatment will give McCalebb the ability to cut inside while moving to his left for the first time in three months.

Northwestern isn't poor against the run by any means. Surviving in the Big 10 Conference requires toughness up front and the Wildcats have plenty with linebackers Quentin Davie and Nate Williams.

They conceded 212 yards to Illinois in mid-November, which was alarming, but held run-prone Wisconsin to a season-low 99 yards a week later.
Still, this is where Auburn thrives. It should continue that trend in Tampa.

MATCHUP: Northwestern run offense vs. Auburn run defense
Advantage:

Is that right? Auburn gets a defensive advantage?

The truth is that fatigue messed with the Tigers' defense more than anything. A thin depth chart was taxed when starters were asked to play at least 60 snaps every week. That left defensive coordinator Ted Roof looking for ways to fix an unfixable problem.

Auburn's defense played well against Alabama, providing a clear affirmation that Roof has the ability to scheme opponents. Now he has a defense that is healthy and rested for the first time since early September.

The Wildcats are committed to offensive balance, but that doesn't mean it’s a healthy thing. Quarterback Mike Kafka earns more carries than anyone on his team. While he's a fine runner for a quarterback, he's not a big-play threat.

Northwestern doesn't have any. Coach Pat Fitzgerald rotates several tailbacks into featured roles, but none have distinguished themselves. The team averages 3.1 yards per rush.

Auburn averages 5.

MATCHUP: Auburn passing offense vs. Northwestern pass defense
Advantage:

Chris Todd has enjoyed a fine senior season. He's made plenty of good decisions and, in the end, has been at least a serviceable option for offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn.

He is not a game-breaking element.

In fact, it's now obvious how serious Malzahn is about featuring the run. Auburn dedicated 61 percent of its plays toward the ground game this season. That's not necessarily a knock on Todd -- he finished with 21 touchdown passes, after all -- but passing is a surprisingly peripheral part of the Tigers' offensive personality.

Northwestern has the pieces to undermine Todd. Four players have at least a pair of picks this season -- Walt McFadden is Auburn's only multi-interception player -- and the pass rush is at least ample.

Defensive end Corey Wootten, who struggled with knee and ankle injuries for most of the season, is expected to be fully healthy in Tampa. He was an outstanding rusher throughout the 2008 season and knows this game provides an opportunity to silence doubters.

Northwestern conceded yards during the regular season, but some of that was due to Fitzgerald's willingness to take chances. Will that be enough to confuse Todd? My guess is yes.


MATCHUP: Northwestern pass offense vs. Auburn pass defense
Advantage:

Mike Kafka is a very good quarterback.

He isn't remarkably powerful. He's not particularly fast. What makes Kafka so valuable is that he brings life to the Wildcats' offense. The senior understands Northwestern's short-pass system and makes it work without many snags.

He's accurate. He doesn't make many mistakes.

Kafka also has enough guile to add another dimension to the team's rushing attack. He finished the season with 465 rushing yards, but yardage lost due to sacks -- he was hit behind the line 25 times this season -- dramatically diminished Kafka's overall numbers. Still, that duality affects opposing defenses. Simply put, Kafka is a threat to do anything at any moment.

Auburn pass defense isn't remarkable. McFadden provides good coverage at cornerback, but the Tigers are inexperienced at safety. The team's other cornerback, Neiko Thorpe, was bust-prone in October and November.

If Antonio Coleman and Antoine Carter can generate pressure along the edge, Kafka could be marginalized. That has happened more often that expected; Northwestern has allowed 29 sacks this season.


MATCHUP: Special teams
Advantage:

Auburn's work on special teams hasn't exactly been memorable, but there have been bright spots. Kicker Wes Byrum doesn't get the recognition he deserves for hitting 14 of his 15 attempts this season.

His only miss was a 46-yarder at Tennessee.

Demond Washington also looks like a find on kickoff return. His touchdown against Georgia was memorable. Who knew he had that much speed?

Auburn's coverage teams are putrid.

Northwestern is a little better with its coverages, but the difference is nominal. Both teams have terrible punt-return groups. It's hard to find teams that even approach Auburn's 4.5 yards per punt return, but the Wildcats clock in at 6.6.

It comes down to Byrum and Northwestern's Stefan Demos, who is an average kicker and a below-average punter.

MATCHUP: Coaching
Advantage:

Chizik has been a surprise.

It's difficult to know how much influence he has on the things we all see on game day. Coaches don't talk about it. Chizik certainly doesn't talk about it. One thing is clear: Auburn's staff works together well.

The offense has been much better than expected. Aside from missteps against Kentucky and LSU, things have progress. The defense is troubled, no doubt, but Roof doesn't appear to be the problem. He needs more players.

Special teams have been an issue, but even that problem seems to be less critical these days.

Northwestern has improved under Fitzgerald, who played linebacker for the Wildcats' 1995 Rose Bowl team. They're sound on defense and don't rely on trickery to compete despite rigorous academic standards akin to Vanderbilt.
Still, Auburn has a remarkable offense.

That's a big reason why the Outback Bowl selected Auburn. This offense is unique in some ways, generates plenty of yards and excitement.


MATCHUP: Intangibles
Advantage:

Both of these programs consider themselves on the upswing. Northwestern has been a bottom-half team in its league for generations, but has gained the ability to become competitive more often.

Auburn bottomed out last season. Chizik and his staff have changed almost everything about the program and created an excitement that hasn't existed since 2004. Though the team's record is only two wins better than a year ago, there's a sense that the Tigers are on the cusp of bigger achievements.

Is it real? Is it hype?

A win in Tampa could provide more meaningful data. Players are surprisingly eager to consolidate progress they believe was made in losses to Georgia and Alabama. They're looking at this game as a way to re-establish national credibility.

Northwestern is a pretty good team in a pretty good league.

Auburn believes it's better than that.


MATCHUP: Overall
Advantage:

The SEC has the best defenses around.

NFL rosters tell the story. They're loaded with guys from this league because it produces more professional-grade defenders than any league.
Auburn's offense has broken through against several SEC defenses this season. It's legitimate.

Northwestern ended its season with better defensive numbers, but Auburn may be different now. A strong performance against Alabama seemed to demonstrate significant improvement and the addition of outside linebacker Eltoro Freeman, who was out with two injuries, will give the Tigers more power in Tampa.

Auburn really wants this game.

Its offense is most outstanding element of this game.

Ben Tate is the best offensive player in this game.

Antonio Coleman is the best defensive player in this game. Auburn has plenty of advantages. Now the question becomes: Can it capitalize?

My guess is yes.

187 Comments:

Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

PF with Matrimony Substance soon!

7:01 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

holy cow, now I know what you've been doing all day, JayGT. We missed you, but it has been worth it! Great analysis!!!

7:02 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

Anyone watching this BGSU Idaho game? Pretty exciting.

7:06 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

Watching teams matriculate down the field against AU via 5-10 yard passes is highly frustrating. It will be a stomping if we can stop that part of NW's game. If not, it could be a dogfight.

7:06 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

I would be if I was at home, Cincy. now that I know JGT is safe, I'll get back to work. See y'all later.

WARRRRRRRRRR EAGLE!!!

GO TIGERS!!!

7:07 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I have gussied it up and made er look all pretty.

7:10 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

BGSU scored a TD with 32 secs to go ahead by 7. Idaho came down and scored, went for two and made it. 4 secs left, kicking off from the 15 due to celebration penalty.

7:11 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Now that is some substance! Thanks JGT!

7:11 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

Idaho wins

7:11 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

I missed the end of the game....I can't believe it!

7:12 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

Awesome post, Jay! You have been busy. I like it prettied up.

7:13 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Okay, I expected a cliff hanger where you didn't predict a winner. You surprised me, but you surprised me even more when you gave us the special teams advantage. That is incredible.

7:13 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Geeze Jay, since I prioritize HABOTN over bowl games I stopped watching the finish to the Bowling Green/Idaho game. Apparently Idaho scored late, went for two, and got it, and won the game. Simply incredible, or someone at ESPN is messing with me.

7:15 PM  
Blogger diggerforAu said...

Great coverage JGT. Only thing I would do different is on special team I would have put both helmets as a sign of a toss up but youcould be right giving Auburn a slight advantage.

7:20 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

I saw a video of bowl practice and Chiz was personally working with the punt returners. Our poor recruiting has us playing wide receivers and walk-ons on special teams. That'll end soon.

7:22 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Hope your right

7:23 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

I watched that game Cincy. Lots of offense, very little defense! Now I'm watching the second game, which my daughter is not happy about!!! Hard to believe college football is almost over.

7:24 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

From what I understand both Chizik and Troop have been working with the very special teams for a long time.

7:25 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Next season I bet we see some freshmen linebackers and receivers on special teams. It is going to be interesting to see. These high profile recruits will get a chance to prove themselves early.

7:27 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

Steve, it was to the degree that he was showing them how to wave players away from the ball. That basic.

7:27 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

Nice analysis Jay. I think with the rest and recovery we see an offense more like the first games of the season. I'll predict 75 offensive plays and a score of

AU-42
NW-24

7:32 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I like the way the Oregon coach handled the Blount situation with the indefinite suspension. Bringing him back when he thought he had learned his lesson rather than at some arbitrary date makes good sense. Also, if I were a player, I would much rather know how long I was suspend for up front. It is a tough punishment to not know if you are going to ever get back on the field.

7:33 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I think we beat Northwestern because of multiple reasons. I believe our defense is much better than they appeared during the season because of lack of depth. Also, the speed that Tate mentioned will be a factor. And one of the biggest factors will be our offensive line.

I do wish Tate hadn't mentioned Northwestern being slow, though. No need to give them anything to get the pumped up.

7:37 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Big news comming tonight according to rivals. My guess is we are getting Newton. Not sure...

7:39 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Turf, it could be Adams. I think CM is announcing after New Years.

7:43 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

Wisconsin took pleasure in talking about how they were supposed to lose to Miami's speed. Players usually look smarter when talking AFTER the game.

7:46 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I agree. I wish Tate had waited. I think Northwestern really shut down the Wisconsin running game, so their defense isn't too shabby.

7:47 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Steve - I think it's Newton

7:49 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

If it is Newton, I will be shocked. By the way, I think Newton could be the difference between us contending for the west title or not in 2010. We could really use an experienced proven QB.

7:51 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Hmmmm - Should there be a bet in here somewhere....nah...that's last yrs resolution.

7:55 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Bama will obviously be the favorite for the west next season, but currently I think there is about a four way tie for second, with MSU being the odd team out.

7:58 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

This game is far from over? In my book, one more score by Nebraska and it is over.

8:02 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Looks like we're getting Newton. More 2 come

8:07 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

When is that news coming?

8:08 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Turfman, are you wtc's mom?!!

8:08 PM  
Blogger diggerforAu said...

Nebraska is making it look easy so far. I don't think Arizona will come back.

8:11 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Now..Cameron Newton has committed to Auburn and will sign tomarrow afternoon.

8:11 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Thanks Turfman. That is great news.

8:12 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

That's surprising news. I really thought his dad was pushing MSU.

8:13 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Turf - Where did you see that?

8:14 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Or hear?

8:16 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

The silence is deafening

8:19 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

It does make good sense. Auburn is the closest to home for him and with Malzahn as a coach, what QB wouldn't jump at the chance?

8:19 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Turfman, give us details!!!

8:20 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Oh, I agree. I just haven't seen it anywhere yet.

8:20 PM  
Blogger Norm said...

Kathy shoots and scores with the wtc mom post. Well done ma'am.

8:21 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

I just got a text from D&B saying the same thing, Cam likely to sign with Auburn on Thursday.

8:23 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Cincy - who is D&B? Pardon my ignorance....I immediately think of Dunn & Bradstreet

8:25 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Rivals..cannot say which mod said it not sure if Jay G will allow it..

8:25 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

No worries...don't post it. Just wanted to know where.

8:28 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Just to get an idea of what kind of monster Cam Newton is, he is about as fast as Kodi Burns. Burns runs a 4.50, while newton runs a 4.53. What's the big difference? Well, Newton is nearly 4 inches taller and outweighs Kodi by about 40 pounds. If he is an accurate passer, he can be scary good.

8:29 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

Newton can be a difference maker. I think we'd be OK without him, but I'd much rather he be on our sideline than MSU's next fall.

8:29 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

I've heard it reported that passing is his weak point. We really need to be able to get it downfield.

8:30 PM  
Blogger FSJ said...

SIAP:

Below is a link to video of the 'shed' and 'electrical closet' that got the Pirate canned..

Argggghhhh

8:30 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I like that he won a junior college national championship last season. That says to me that he likely makes good decisions. We don't have anyone that is like going to start with significant experience.

8:31 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

If Newton can just pass as good as Todd, he will be scary good. Can you imagine him running the read option? From the video I have seen, he doesn't exactly run the ball like Chris Todd.

8:33 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

I agree that the championship says a lot. If he comes, he's the most likely starter.

8:36 PM  
Blogger ehyou said...

What a great analysis. Mr. JG Tate is nice to have around. Thanks.

8:39 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Newton is ranked a 5* and the #1 JUCO prospect according to rivals. Last season in JUCO he completed 60% of his passes(204-336)for 2,833 yards with 22 TD's and only 4 INT's. He was the #1 duel threat QB and a 5* out of high school. He is a much better passer than Todd.

8:39 PM  
Blogger diggerforAu said...

Evindently Malzahn and Chizik sees something that makes them want him to sign with Auburn. That is good enough for me

8:42 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Familiar with the spread too. Check out this youtube video of him crunching this Vol if you have not seen it yet...



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e60_8ln-MgE

8:45 PM  
Blogger diggerforAu said...

Great video Turfman I think I remember seeing that at the time. just didn't rmember who the young QB was.

8:48 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Ugh I screwed up my post.

Here are a bunch of highlights, not sure if you have seen them but I thought it was timely. Also, some very nice passes

Cam Newton

8:50 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

If he is a lot better than Todd passing the ball, he could be a Heisman candidate. It is hard to imagine that combination of passing and running all in one package. Even Tebow isn't an exceptional passer.

8:53 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

22 TDs with 4 ints says a lot.

Having a QB that's a threat to run will help our backs.

8:55 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

I wouldnt call Todd exceptional either. I'm not saying the guy is Tan Marino or anything but he has a great arm.

8:56 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

AU1N04,
Sorry had to take care of something and was away for a bit. D&B is Dunaway and Brown radio program here in bham.

Text message said Jeffery Lee from auburnsports.com was reporting this.

8:59 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

That is the source you said it

9:00 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Evidently he was at Martin Hall and the student center?

9:01 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Todd isn't exceptional, but he is a solid QB, but not a runner. I like Todd in terms of his decision making and his ball placement. I would call him a good manager of the offense.

As for Newton, I call someone like that a weapon. If he is as good at running as advertised you won't see a wildcat QB coming in.

In his video, he reminds me of some great runningbacks when he hits the secondary. You look at the DBs and they aren't eager to tackle him. It may be because he is as fast as them but out weighs them by 50 or 60 pounds. They have the same look as DBs trying to tackle Walker or Bo in the secondary. They are hesitant and want to slow him down until help arrives.

I really shouldn't get this excited about someone who is not a proven starter, but this guy has a lot of potential.

9:03 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Thanks Cincy for the update. Hence why I didn't know.

9:03 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

The information I reported from isn't from a paid site, so I hope that was okay.

9:03 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

It's also on JOX twitter page.

9:04 PM  
Blogger Spongeworthy said...

Easy now guys. Heisman candidate? Too much too fast.

9:04 PM  
Blogger diggerforAu said...

Happy New Year to all of you Hotties and the host JGT. May you have a Healthful & Prosporous 2010.
I have enjoyed spending time here and talking with each of you.
I will be heading for Tampa in the morning and I don't pack a laptop and have the simpliest cell phone available so have a good week end and War Eagle. May Auburn start the new year off with a big victory.

9:05 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

Jeffrey posted that on the message board a while back.

Still no story, though. I want to make sure this information is legit before I run it here.

Last I heard, nothing was going to be announced tonight.

9:06 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Hey Hey Hey....no guys...Steve

9:06 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Steve said the H word.

9:06 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

You are right Sponge. It is entirely possible he won't take a snap, but I do like the potential. Jason Campbell is the last QB we had with this type of build, and he wasn't quite this big and if I recall correctly, not quite as fast.

9:06 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

Todd also has a nice pump fake. His ability to make decisions was his key attribute though.

Newton needs to be smart as well as athletic.

9:06 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Safe travels digger and enjoy your trip!

9:07 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

JGT - Side note...have you heard any rumblings about Rollison from anyone?

9:07 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Nova, the being smart thing is what I believe to be the most important quality of a QB. Forget passing or running. If you have a QB that makes poor decisions, it doesn't matter. He will cost you games.

9:09 PM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

Jay,
Was I out of line posting it from D&B?

9:10 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Suh wide open in the endzone...how funny

9:12 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Nothing is certain yet, and even if he signs, it isn't certain he will ever make the field. I just like the possibilities. If this guy is really in the running, Kodi and Caudle may be totally forgotten next season. We can easily get a three deep from Newton, Rollison, Moseley, and Trotter. That is assuming Rollison gets out of the doghouse.

9:12 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

or sad

9:12 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Steve - I wouldn't be surprised if he does sign....and makes the field....that someone transfers.

9:13 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Someone needs to explain to me why I picked Arizona in this game. I just don't get it.

9:13 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I would hope that Caudle and Kodi would consider transferring. I have nothing personal against either of them and do hope they do well.

9:14 PM  
Blogger Spongeworthy said...

I want another DL and OL. But I'll take a QB. If he signs, Caudle might as well concentrate on his schoolwork, which I think would be wise anyway. I think we really need Adams badly as well. We will be a little light at DE without him.

9:15 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Because some expert analyst said that they were good enough to almost go undefeated....that statement this afternoon made me do a double take to the radio.

9:15 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Sponge - I would assume with Newton in, Adams is out.

Discuss..

9:16 PM  
Blogger E-Bro said...

So we're just handing the starting spot to Newton?

I feel that with all the hype we are giving him we are bound to have be disappointed. I'm envisioning something like Lucy pulling the football out from under of Charlie Brown.

9:17 PM  
Blogger Spongeworthy said...

I am also hearing, to back up WTC, that Rollison is in deep trouble. I think he makes it back, but if he slips up before Chiz lets him back on the team, he will be history. Kodi will play wideout and wildcat next year, won't transfer. My guess is Rollison or Trotter will transfer if Newton wins job. Just a guess.

9:18 PM  
Blogger Norm said...

Steve - you picked Arizona because you are a MADMAN! When you stole that cow, and your friend tried to make it with the cow...

9:18 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Hey E - Nah, just thinking that he would be the most experienced

9:19 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I would like to see Adams also. I am not convinced Etheridge will be back.

As for Newton, keep in mind that I was very excited about Burns, too. My opinion changed quickly after seeing him in an actual game.

9:19 PM  
Blogger Spongeworthy said...

Yeah, Adams may be the odd man out if Newton comes. Wonder if they want him bad enough to count him against this year. Initially, I heard they would not.

9:20 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Norm, I have to agree. And I am developing a big man crush on Suh. He could be the number 1 draft pick. He looks like that kind of player.

9:20 PM  
Blogger Norm said...

He is a beast.

9:22 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

DonkeyKong Suh is a very big boy

9:22 PM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Safe travels to all Hotties and Happy New Year! Bring home an AU win!

9:23 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Sponge - I agree I didn't think they wanted to do that....interesting how quick the tale can turn.

9:23 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I have to remind myself sometimes that there are huge busts in the NFL too. I remember a guy that Green Bay drafted back in the 80s. I believe he was a tackle. He looked like a monster, like Hulk Hogan. I think Green Bay made him the highest paid linemen ever, until it turned out he was an overhyped average player.

9:25 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

Names being thrown around in the rumor mill for TTech now include Malzhan. Given their system and athletes it makes sense. Ugh.

9:25 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

And his name was Tony Mandarich

9:25 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Stat - I heard that was an evil empire rumor start.

9:26 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

It's all over the Miss State board - prolly hoping to get CN.

9:27 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Malzahn would seem like a great choice for Texas Tech, but I don't know that Texas Tech is a great choice for Malzahn. If I am him, I give it one more year. I we win the west next season, he can likely pick any open coaching position, including Michigan, should it come open.

9:28 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

AU1, that is the name. It was hilarious.

9:28 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Someone stick a fork in Arizona.

9:30 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I just can't see Gus Malzahn as a head coach right now. He doesn't act like one. He's too timid.

I don't expect anything more firm to be reported tonight about Cam Newton. That'll unfold tomorrow.

9:30 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Stat - You will also see it on the TT board and that was started evidently by a bammer.

9:30 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

I think Jay nailed it. GM needs to prove something and get comfortable at this level. Not ready for his own program yet.

9:33 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Jay, I get the impression that Malzahn is a geeky kind of guy that just likes to be left alone to do what he does and isn't in a hurry to be a head coach. It would seem he has an ideal position at the moment, because I seriously doubt Chizik tells him anything about how to run his offense. Is that your opinion?

9:34 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Agreed about CGM

9:34 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

And should Malzahn go to Chizik and say he would like a raise, I bet it happens.

9:35 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Briles,Fedora,and Sumlin will be top 3 for TT. I would be suprised if Malzahn gets offered or takes that job. If Rollison transfers it will be to JC. Alot of ppl assumed Rollison was ready but remember he is a freshman. If you need an example of why not to start a freshman look at USC. Mistakes by Barkley have killed them this year.

9:36 PM  
Blogger auforme said...

That was a great post, Jay. Seriously, we get the special teams advantage? They must really stink in this area. War Eagle!

9:38 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I don't think Rollison would transfer. Newton would only be here for two years, that leaves him two years.

9:38 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

I don't think Rollison transfers because he would be next in line I would think....but I ain't in the locker room, much less in the same state.

9:39 PM  
Blogger E-Bro said...

I would say USC was damned if you do or damned if you don't this year at QB.

I watch Corp play QB for them against Washington. He looked truly terrible.

9:39 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

auforme, I agree, but our field goal kicking has been outstanding. Other than that, our special teams have been very unique.

9:39 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Steve and I are sharing the same wavelength which means it might be time for me to head out soon. jk

9:40 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

USC is a good example of how playing an inexperienced highly regarded QB can kill you. Supposedly the guy is very talented, but experience means a lot in college football.

9:41 PM  
Blogger jhag said...

NEWTTTTTTTTTTTTTon

9:41 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

My guess is that if Gus asked Chizik if he could sleep with Chizik's wife, he would consider it. No, he might not agree, but he would consider it. Gus has been that important.

9:42 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Ok - Steve and I are off the same wavelength now.

9:44 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Hehehe

9:44 PM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Ok all, I am out for the evening.

9:45 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Think about what Malzahn did. He took basically the sample players from 2008 the looked so offensive as an offense, and made them one of the better offenses in the NCAA. I think we moved up nearly 100 spots in the rankings. That is remarkable.

9:46 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

The only players new for 2009 that I would call major contributors were Lunchinkitchen and FAH. Other than that, it was mainly the same players.

9:49 PM  
Blogger E-Bro said...

Well, let's be honest. Chris Todd was basically a brand new player without a bum shoulder.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Drew said...

Jay, what are your thoughts on this staff staying together through the offseason... Do you see any assistants leaving? Was the Thigpen interview with Urban a rumor???
Thanks in advance

10:03 PM  
Blogger astatguy said...

OK - here's the scoop. Chad Froechtenicht, Cam Newton's good friend, joined Auburn Tiger Paws group as a fan on Facebook, and said the decision is imminent. He's rumored as a walk-on at AU. So the new direct info source on football, Facebook, has spoken.

Maybe Tyrick will change his profile message and we'll get more news.

On that note - good night.

10:03 PM  
Blogger Turfman said...

Sorry I said Briles, Sumlin, and Fedora earlier. Take out Fedora and add in Tuberville and Venables(DC at OU)

10:12 PM  
Blogger E-Bro said...

Just read the Len Pasquarelli piece on Cadillac that Jet posted earlier. Good for Lac.

But it seems that Pasquarelli isn't really familiar with Lac's style. He says b/c of his injuries, Lac has lost some of his speed and his more of a slasher/power runner now.

That's the way Lac has always been. He's certainly not slow and his feet are amazingly quick, but he was never a burner. RonnieB was faster than Lac. Lac's slashing, power style is what made him a special back to begin with, even more so given his body type.

At any rate, great to see Carnell doing what he's doing this season.

10:15 PM  
Blogger Hoopie said...

Newton may end up being something special, but we got a long way to fo before that happens.

In those films I saw a powerful athlete that outmanned some JUCO players. I didn't see any accurate passes to tightly covered receivers and I never saw Newton through to the 3rd or 4th WR.

CN has a powerful arm, but routinely threw off of his back foot. He will pass better than Kodi(who couldn't), but doesn't have the good passing fundamentals of Rollison.

Before we annoint the guy, let's see if he can learn the O and make decisions other than taking off on a run.

10:26 PM  
Blogger Hoopie said...

I only saw a small amount of Lac's film. He looked like he is completely back to full abilities.

10:29 PM  
Blogger E-Bro said...

Hoopie...concerning your 10:26 post: my thoughts exactly.

10:34 PM  
Blogger FearlessFreep said...

Wow, didn't see any of the AZ-NU game, but saw where Zona had a whopping 37 net yards with 7 minutes left in the game. Finished with 109, but still 0 points.

That's a pretty fair defensive performance by the Huskers.

10:42 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

So I go out of town and you folks blow up with the Newton thing and the Malzahn thing.

My mom says don't worry about the malzahn thing. She also said if Newton comes to AU, other SEC teams should worry more about AU, if he is the starter.

Reporting from Disney, I am out.

10:46 PM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

I like this. I hope Jay G. is right in his prediction. Wish I was down there in Tampa to watch the game.

10:58 PM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

E-Bro,

Carnell deserves a few seasons of good health after all the injuries he's had since his freshman year. I hope his run of good health and play continues.

11:00 PM  
Blogger BinOBA said...

great post, jay. Everyone should go see avatar in 3d, it's easily one of the most amazing things i've seen in a movie theater.

11:14 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

E-Bro, you are dead on with Caddy. He is very quick and suprisingly powerful, but Ronnie Brown was the speedster and even more powerful. What really made Caddy special was his quickness. He would juke people out of their socks. That, combined with surprising power and durability for his size, made him special.

11:45 PM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

As for Ronnie Brown, give me 22 Ronnie Browns and I win a national championship. He was pretty much a do it all guy.

11:46 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

ok, I'm home now and I've eaten. Time to pack. Gotta leave for the airport in less than 5 hours. I hate that I missed today's bowl games.

WARRRRRR EAGLE!!!

12:24 AM  
Blogger IV said...

Mornin' Hotties,

TAMPA BOUND. I am out of here.
WAR EAGLR!!!!!!!!!

5:10 AM  
Blogger API said...

Morning Hot Ones. Fox news is reporting cell phone video of the 'electrical closet' or 'tool shed' reportedly taken by Adam James himself during the incident.

5:35 AM  
Blogger ehyou said...

Safe travels to everyone on the road today.

7:47 AM  
Blogger Ephemeral said...

War Eagle, Hotties!

For our representatives at Tampa, we will be looking for you on the tube while we eat our peas and cornbread.

Go, Tigers!

7:54 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Looks like there is just a small chance of rain for the Hotties during the game tomorrow. This has sure been a wet football season. That old la nina.

Hopefully there are still a few of us "unfortunates" left on the computer for tomorrow's game.

8:25 AM  
Blogger Aeronaut said...

Happy new year, o hot ones. May your year be full of peace and joy and all those good things in life.

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back, and the sun shine warm upon your face. The rains fall soft upon your fields. And till we meet again, may God hold you in the hollow of His hand.

8:26 AM  
Blogger Aeronaut said...

Yes it's a tad early... 4 hours to go to new years over here.

WDE.

8:29 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Aero - Where are you?

8:32 AM  
Blogger Aeronaut said...

I like to pretend that it's a super secret bunker. It's not.

Just an undisclosed location in Pakistan.

8:43 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Well Happy New Year!! Since you may be the first from the HABOTN to hit it.

Also stay safe, I do hear it is nice in that part of the world this time of year.

Sincerely,

Snowey Baltimore

8:50 AM  
Blogger Norm said...

Aero - Nice to see you back again.

8:56 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

Happy New Year Aero! Great to hear from you again. Will you get to watch the game?

8:56 AM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

Aeronaut!!!! Welcome back!!! Love you, man!!! Mean it!!!

8:57 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

Although you might not respond due to whatever it was in the past...Happy New Year Aero and thanks for all that you do.

9:07 AM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

Hey peeps.

I'm supposed to be on with J-Kev, but I didn't get home from the casino until, uh, late.

I apparently slept through the calls. I'll let you know if I can get in touch with them and start some hatin' this morning.

9:11 AM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

Blackjack=fun.

9:12 AM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

I find it very interesting the Mike "WTF" Leach now has players coming out announcing they are glad he is gone. This, to me, seems to indicate there was more wrong there than we new. Players don't hate a coach for working them hard. If they did, Pat Dye would have been one of the most hated coaches around. Players hate coaches that don't respect them.

9:14 AM  
Blogger Jet the Dancin' Gopher said...

From my undisclosed lair in East Vaughngomery, I am preparing to take Stewardess to work, head to the grocery to pick up foodstuffs, and hunker down for preparation of my New Year's Eve traditions -- chili, blue cheese dip and other good stuff.

9:15 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

The Supersport 930 webpage seems to be down anyway...

9:16 AM  
Blogger cincytiger said...

It makes me kind of nervous that so many people are picking Auburn to win.

9:17 AM  
Blogger SteveFC said...

cincy, I am pretty nervous, too. I think we win, but the Northwestern offense being so unusual makes me a bit nervous.

9:20 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

Chris Low of ESPN didn't

9:22 AM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I think it's bizarre how much coverage ESPN has allocated toward this Texas Tech situation.

I mean, it's a fairly big deal.

Is it worth around-the-clock coverage? I don't think so.

9:23 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

I just like the thought that our team should be fully healthy for the first time in months.

9:23 AM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

FYI: Hatin' segment kicking off around 9:30 CST.

9:23 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

ESPN keeps moving closer and closer to being the E! network.

9:23 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

I think our offense is pretty unusual too, and we have a lot of healthy, rested players. Since this is our last game of the season, Gus doesn't have to play conservative. I think we win this one for our seniors.

9:24 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

They need to get their webpage up.

9:24 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

On the gossip front....

Has anyone else heard that TMZ.com is going to do a sports version....I can see that being successful....and painful

9:25 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

And 1 more gossip comment....

AT&T just dropped Tiger Woods.

9:27 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

TMZ doing sports, is usually the 1st 10 mins of Sportscenter lately.

9:27 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

RK - I think that is the reason to be honest.

What is the link to the website even though it doesn't work?

9:32 AM  
Blogger WarEagleRK said...

http://www.supersport930.com/

9:32 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

RK - Try this

Link

9:35 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

We have a new Link.....

JGT tell them we can hear and thanks for giving the shout out.

9:36 AM  
Blogger AU1N04 said...

That link works I am listening.

9:37 AM  
Blogger Loganville Tiger said...

Very Nice JGT - Nice Breakdown

12:22 PM  
OpenID marosia said...

It will be great to watch Auburn Tigers,i have bought tickets from
http://ticketfront.com/event/Auburn_Tigers-tickets looking forward to it.

12:48 AM  

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