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That's a wrap: Auburn wins, 37-13

Hey everyone. Pretty powerful win for the Tigers on Saturday night. Let's take a look at some numbers, trends and quotes that caught my eyes.
  • Auburn wins, 37-13.

  • Auburn outgains La Tech 357-102 during the second half.

  • Onterio McCalebb rushes for 148 yards on 22 carries. He's very fast.

  • Ben Tate rushes for 117 yards on 20 carries. He's mean between the tackles.

  • Auburn rushes for 301 yards total.

  • Auburn finishes with 556 yards. That's the highest total since Kentucky 2005 ... aka The Tristan Davis Game.

  • Onterrio McCalebb on his approach: "A lot of people say I'm small. It's not about size. It's all about heart. I can do anything I want to. If I get on the edge, I'll go off the edge. If I'm between the tackles, I run between the tackles."

  • McCalebb again: ``I was hyped the whole game. I was running around telling people that nobody could touch us. They tried to tackle me and I'm too fast. They'd better do what they can do because I'm coming."

  • La Tech DT D'Anthony Smith, a coveted NFL prospect: ``I have to give them credit. It's one of the best offensive lines I have played against in my career."

  • La Tech coach Derek Dooley: ``We prepared for it, but the hard part was the big offensive linemen and the two big running backs. Every time you try to hit them, there is no way you can simulate it. It seemed like we were behind the chains every time they handed it off to No. 44."

  • Terrell Zachery: ``It was the first game and it took a while for everyone to get back and moving together on game day. I thought in the second half we came together really well and that helped us put the game away."

  • Nick Fairley on what Tracy Rocker told him to do: ``Go out and ball. Know where you're going and ball. It's nothing fancy."

  • Ted Roof: ``I thought that was a good start for Nick. I thought he showed up and I was most proud of him when he made a mistake, he kept going. He responded the right way. He played hard and played solid and that was a good start for him."

  • Gene Chizik on the atmosphere: ``They were there tonight and they were fired up and they fired our football team up. It started from the time we got off the bus to the time we went out for our pre-game warmups and they never let up. They did their job just like they always do."

  • Chizik on being nervous: ``I had a little bit of the pregame jitters. I just thought we were really well prepared to be honest with you. I just felt prepared."

Photo credit: Todd Van Emst/Auburn University

Final: AU wins, 37-13

Hey everyone. Welcome to the second half of today's football game.

  • LTU 1st drive: Punt ... 3 plays, 1 yard.

  • Auburn 1st drive: FUMBLE. Darvin Adams lost it.

  • LTU 2nd drive: INTERCEPTION. Daren Bates snagged it.

  • Auburn 2nd drive: Terrell Zachery 93 pass from Chris Todd ... longest TD play in Auburn history ... 3 plays, 98 plays.
    • AUBURN 20, LA TECH 10

  • LTU 3rd drive: Punt. 3 plays, 4 yards.

  • Auburn 3rd drive: Punt. 7 plays, 20 yards.

  • LTU 4th drive: Punt. 3 plays, 5 yards.

  • Auburn 4th drive: 47 FG ... Byrum is 3-for-3 on FGs tonight ... 5 plays, 22 yards.
    • AUBURN 23, LA TECH 10

  • LTU 5th drive: 46 FG ... 7 plays, 40 yards.
    • AUBURN 23, LA TECH 13

  • Auburn 5th drive: Darvin Adams 17 pass from Todd ... 9 plays, 72 yards. Auburn now has 445 yards of offense.
    • AUBURN 30, LA TECH 13

  • Another Auburn drive: Onterio McCalebb 3 run ... 13 plays, 59 yards ... Tigers now have more than 500 yards of offense.
    • AUBURN 37, LA TECH 13

    I am no longer updating this as regularly. I'm writing. Please see the comments section for updates!

First Half: AU leads, 13-10

Hey everyone. Welcome to the first quarter.

  • Auburn 1st drive: 25 FG ... 13 plays, 69 yards. Eleven runs.
    • AUBURN 3, LA TECH 0

  • LTU 1st drive: Dennis Morris 19 pass from Colby Cameron ... 8 plays, 72 yards ... Auburn was flagged for a trio of 15-yard penalties.
    • LA TECH 7, AUBURN 3

  • Auburn 2nd drive: Kodi Burns 1 run ... 10 plays, 66 yards ... four Wildcat snaps on that drive.
    • AUBURN 10, LA TECH 7

  • LTU 2nd drive: Ends with a punt ... 10 plays, 27 yards.

  • Auburn 3rd drive: Ends with a punt ... 5 plays, 15 yards.

  • LTU 3rd drive: FUMBLE. Caused by Nick Fairley, recovered by Joshua Bynes.

  • Auburn 4th drive: FUMBLE. Ben Tate lost it.

  • LTU 4th drive: 20 FG ... 18 plays, 90 yards ... drive lasted almost seven minutes ... Auburn was whisled for another 15-yard penalty.
    • AUBURN 10, LA TECH 10

  • Auburn 5th drive: 50 FG ... 3 plays, 29 yards.
    • AUBURN 13, LA TECH 10

Pre-game updates

Hey everyone. Here's what's happening.
  • LB Eltoro Freeman is not participating in warmups and is presumed out for this game.

  • DE Nosa Eguae is wearing a protective boot on his right leg/ankle and is out for this game.

  • Guys who were expected to be out and are, in fact, out: LB Spencer Pybus (concussion), S Mike McNeil (leg), WR Tim Hawthorne (ankle/foot), S Aairon Savage (leg).

Welcome to Jordan-Hare Stadium

Hey everyone. Jordan-Hare Stadium is beginning to fill with students because it's 4 p.m. CDT.

Here's the team praying at the end of Tiger Walk.

I'm headed out for a quick HABOTN-related tailgate stop. I'll check back in a bit.

Days to kickoff: 0

Our Tar Heel Tiger's Auburn Minute is brought to you by the number:


The following was penned by Bro. Jet ...

If Pat Sullivan was the arm of the modern era of Auburn football, if Terry Beasley supplied the hands, if Bo Jackson provided the legs, and if Ralph Jordan and Pat Dye were its coaches, then Jim Fyffe was surely its voice.

For 22 years, from the first day of Pat Dye through the first half of the Tuberville era, Jim painted pictures with his voice like none other. He would tell you he was the most surprised that he would have that opportunity. Those who had the opportunity to know Jim personally would testify to his humility and to the generosity of his heart. Simply, he was always willing to spend time with those who were interested in his craft. It was his way to acknowledged he had been blessed.

A Kentucky native who ended up in Birmingham after a hitch in the military, Jim moved to Montgomery to be the sports director at WCOV-TV, a minor player in the Montgomery television market. Truth be told, in the 1970s, people in Montgomery watched rival WSFA, which first had Carl Stephens, and then Phil Snow as their sports directors.

In Montgomery, Jim was known as the guy who did the public address announcing for Montgomery Rebels games at Paterson Field, and the dude stuck with announcing YMCA Pee Wee football games and wrestling on television. But Jim was always working. He did some football play-by-play for local high schools and basketball work for small colleges for a radio station the television station owned. It led to a big break – the one that defined his career.

Colonial Broadcasting, then the communications arm of the now-defunct bank, won the bid over WAPI in Birmingham to hold the broadcasting rights for Auburn football. The old crew of Paul Ellen, Mike Kolen, and Phil Snow were out. Jim and Pat Sullivan were in.

Ultimately, Jim was best known for his signature call “Touchdown Auburn!” It was something evolved over time. Once he figured out that it irritated Alabama fans as much as it elated Auburn fans, well, that was just fine with him.

Ask any Auburn football fan: they will have their favorite Fyffe football calls. Here are just a few of his notables:
  • Nix to Sanders, 1993, vs. Alabama
  • Nix to Sanders, 1994, vs. Florida
  • Burger to Tillman, 1987, vs. Georgia Tech
  • Slack to Wasden, 1989, vs. Florida
  • Bye Bye Bo!, 1985, vs. Georgia Tech
  • I’m Headin’ to Toomers, 2002, vs. Alabama

Sadly, the Voice left us too soon. Jim died in May 2003. He had accompanied Tommy Tuberville to a banquet at Prattville. Shortly after arriving at his home in Montgomery, he collapsed due to a brain aneurysm. Jim, a long-time diabetic, never regained consciousness. He passed away the following morning. He was 57.

In his memory, Auburn University created the Jim Fyffe Diabetes Research Fund.

First Post: GAME ONE

Hey everyone. Here we are. Game Day finally has arrived. We're all happy. I have abundant sun here in E. Montgomery, Ala., and the radar looks clear to me. Should be a good day for football.

I'm trying to work in a few minutes with my girls right now, so I'll keep it short. See you all this afternoon!

Here's the Auburn situation at this moment:




It's Game Day, peeps. We'll be doing stuff. I'm arriving at J-H around 3:30 CDT. My plan is to venture out and visit at least one HOTTIE tailgate. I'll be providing frequent updates during the game. My goal is to have a halftime Campfire®. Post-game will be slow because I'll be on deadline.

I will update with stuff before I leave the stadium. It could be midnight.

Here's what the next few days look like:

Sat., Sept. 5, vs. Louisiana Tech, 6:05 p.m. CDT
Sun., Sept. 6, 6 p.m.
Mon., Sept. 7, OFF
Tue., Sept. 8, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)
Wed., Sept. 9, 4:30 p.m. (Wifey's birthday; Beatles Rock Band is released)

Also, please pick up the Advertiser's print edition if you live around here! Our fine Auburn coverage is only one element of our award-winning product.

Scenes from Campus: Friday afternoon

Gene Chizik talks to the players following their walk-through on Friday afternoon.

Trooper Taylor addressed the peeps Friday at a pep rally located near Toomer's Corner.

Photo credit: Todd Van Emst/Auburn University

Days to kickoff: 1

Our Tar Heel Tiger's Auburn Minute is brought to you by the number:



Dr. George Petrie started it all. The following information, with very minor modifications, is from Wapedia. The primary reference for the Wikipedia entry was Mike Jernigan's book, Auburn Man: The Life and Times of George Petrie.

George Petrie (1866-1947), born in Montgomery, was an American scholar and educator who played a crucial role in the development of Auburn University. From 1887 until his retirement in 1942, Petrie held various positions at Auburn, including professor of history and Latin, head of the History Department, and dean of the Graduate School. Petrie also organized and coached Auburn's first football team in 1892.

Petrie was the first Alabamian to earn a Ph.D. degree. He received his B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Virginia in 1887 and a Ph.D. in "history, political economy, and jurisprudence" from Johns Hopkins University in 1890. At Auburn (known until 1892 as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama, and from 1892 to 1960 as Alabama Polytechnic Institute), Petrie is considered the founder of the History Department and the Graduate School ... as well as the school's athletic program.

His time at the University of Virginia inspired Petrie to choose burnt orange and navy blue as the official colors for Auburn's athletic teams. Upon organizing the first Auburn football team in 1892, Petrie arranged for the team to play the University of Georgia team at Piedmont Park in Atlanta. Auburn won the game 10-0 in front of 2,000 spectators. The game inaugurated what is known to college football fans as the Deep South's Oldest Rivalry.

* * * * * * *

From AU Special Collections intro to the George Petrie papers:

Biographical Sketch: Alabama historian. Petrie was appointed professor of history at Alabama Polytechnic Institute, now Auburn University, in 1887. He served as academic dean from 1908 to 1921 and as graduate dean from 1921 until his retirement in 1942. Petrie wrote extensively on Alabama and Southern history, focusing on secession and the Civil War. Petrie's father, George Laurens Petrie, was minister of the Charlottesville (Va.) Presbyterian Church from 1872 to 1928. His grandfather, George Hollinshead Whitefield Petrie, preached in several churches in South Carolina and Georgia before becoming minister of the Montgomery (Ala.) Presbyterian Church, 1857-1885.

* * * * * * *

His greatest contribution to future Auburn generations may not have been the establishment of football at Auburn, but his authorship of the Auburn Creed in 1943. Let's all try to follow Dr. Petrie's example:

I believe that this is a practical world and that I can count
only on what I earn. Therefore, I believe in work, hard work.

I believe in education, which gives me the knowledge to work
wisely and trains my mind and my hands to work skillfully.

I believe in honesty and truthfulness, without which I cannot
win the respect and confidence of my fellow men.

I believe in a sound mind, in a sound body and a spirit that is
not afraid, and in clean sports that develop these qualities.

I believe in obedience to law because it protects the rights of all.

I believe in the human touch, which cultivates sympathy with my
fellow men and mutual helpfulness and brings happiness for all.

I believe in my country, because it is a land of freedom and
because it is my own home, and that I can best serve that
country by "doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly
with my God."

And because Auburn men and women believe in these things,
I believe in Auburn and love it.

--by George Petrie, Auburn professor and first coach of Auburn’s Football team

* * * * * * *

Coach Gene Chizik needs no introduction, but if you'd like to read about him, I suggest Writer Tate's outstanding work in Coaches Confidential, published by the Montgomery Advertiser.

* * * * * * *

Thanks to all your kind comments during the past 3 months of the Kickoff Kountdown. It's been a blast. A special thanks to Writer Tate for cleaning up my sloppy writing and making it presentable.

btw, Mike Jernigan interviewed in 2007 about his book on Dr. Petrie by a local ABC affiliate. You can order the book here.

First Post: Friday of Week One

Hey everyone. Thursday was a fun one. We held two Campfires®, tying a record for one day, and discussed a whole bunch of stuff.

Big ups to all the people who carried both chats. There were several of you all. I'll forget someone, so I'll just stick with the blanket thank-you. I hope gets its stuff together before next week. Otherwise, we may have to find a new clubhouse.

It's Friday. One day to Auburn football. I'm happy to soon have something to write about. You're happy to soon have something substantive to discuss. It's a win-win, so to speak.

Here's the Auburn situation at this moment:




Auburn is off. The team will be shuttling out to Lanett this afternoon for their traditional trip out of town. Gotta get away from campus distractions, they have told me. Distractions generally don't bother me. Since Chizik said he can't multitask, though, I guess he likes it better this way.

Here's what the next few days look like:

Fri., Sept. 4, OFF
Sat., Sept. 5, vs. Louisiana Tech, 6 p.m. CDT
Sun., Sept. 6, 6 p.m.
Mon., Sept. 7, OFF
Tue., Sept. 8, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)
Wed., Sept. 9, 4:30 p.m. (Wifey's birthday; Beatles Rock Band is released)

Also, please pick up the Advertiser's print edition if you live around here! Our fine Auburn coverage is only one element of our award-winning product.

All we have are the embers (Part II)

Thanks for doing your part in making our second Thursday Campfire a success.

We had a total of 257 participants, which up from the afternoon session.

We discussed AOL Chat Rooms circa 1998, LOLs, ROFLs, Kodi Burns, the Wildcat position, Lou Holtz, Troy's tank job, the hideous Oregon uniforms, Tommy Tuberville's post-Auburn attitude and, of course, Erin Andrews.

I'd say it was a hit.

PROGRAMMING NOTE: "Hatin' With Jay G" will resume tomorrow on Supersport 930 AM out of Jackson, Miss. I am supposed to hit the airwaves/internet at 9:30 in the a.m.

Catch-all Thursday Football Thread

We're watching South Carolina-NC State (ESPN HD) and North Texas-Ball State (ESPNU).

UPDATE: We're also watching Minnesota-Duluth vs. Central Washington.

SECOND UPDATE: I'm listening to Tiger Talk and posting relevant/amusing quotes in the comments section.

Please join in!

Heisman predictions

I am voting in the AP Football Poll this fall. One of my fellow voters, Bob Asmussen of the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, recently polled voters about their view of the Heisman Trophy "race."

A little more than half the voters responded. We were asked to pick five players. Each top pick received five points, the No. 2 pick received four points ... and so on.

I voted Tebow-Bradford-McCoy-Snead-Griffin.

Here are the results:


Tim Tebow, Florida 155 (23)

Sam Bradford, Oklahoma 131.5 (7)

Colt McCoy, Texas 130.5 (5)

Jevan Snead, Mississippi 36.5

Zac Robinson, Oklahoma State 16

Todd Reesing, Kansas 11

Dan LeFevour, Central Michigan 10

Max Hall, BYU 9

Colin Kaepernick, Nevada 5

Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State 4

Daryll Clark, Penn State 3

Robert Griffin, Baylor 3

Juice Williams, Illinois 3

Case Keenum, Houston 2

Kellen Moore, Boise State 2

Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame 1

Jeremiah Masoli, Oregon 1

Rusty Smith, Florida Atlantic 1

Matt Grothe, South Florida 1/2

The Bo Jackson mural

As promised to MonD and Cincy:

Photo credit: Todd Van Emst/Auburn University

All we have are the embers (Part I)

Thanks for doing your part in making our first Thursday Campfire a success.

We had a total of 233 participants, which is great for a workday.

We discussed the over/under for rushing yards (180), Onterio McCalebb, Kodi Burns, Mario Fannin, Gus Malzahn's detail-oriented approach to life, the big mural of Bo Jackson, tailgates, first-game anxiety and where I went to school. And other stuff.

A successful afternoon, no doubt.

We will RETURN for ANOTHER CAMPFIRE at 8 p.m. CDT. Please join us. Until then, keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.

PROGRAMMING NOTE: "Hatin' With Jay G" will resume tomorrow on Supersport 930 AM out of Jackson, Miss. I am supposed to hit the airwaves/internet at 9:30 in the a.m.

Days to kickoff: 2

Our Tar Heel Tiger's Auburn Minute is brought to you by the number:



Ben Obomanu: Selma, Ala.; WR 2002-05; ACADEMIC ALL-SEC in 2003 & 2004; Auburn's leading receiver in 2005. Despite the drop against Ole Miss, Ben ranks second in career TD receptions with 18, one ahead of Karsten Bailey and 11 behind Terry Beasley. Ben ranks 8th in career receptions and 13th in career receiving yards.

Jay G. note: Best interview I've ever seen was Obomanu answering questions at the podium following the Ole Miss drop. He answered honestly. He answered for several minutes. Had YouTube been big then -- or if ESPN was doing around-the-clock college coverage like it does now -- Obomanu would be a household name far beyond Alabama.


* Willie Gosha : Ft. Walton, Fla.; WR 1993-96; tied with Frank Sanders for most receptions (58) in one season; Willie holds AU single game record for receptions (17 vs. Arkansas) and is also tied for 3rd (10 vs. Army); his 222 receiving yards vs Arkansas is third highest total in Auburn history.

* Tim Carter: St. Petersburg, Fla.; WR 1998-2001; Auburn's leading receiver in 2001 and leading kickoff returner in 2000. He had a 100-yard kickoff return against LSU in 2000.

* Chuck Clanton: Pensacola, Fla.; CB 1980-82

* Otis Mounds: Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; TB 1991-94

* Cornelius Joseph Dennis "Neil" O'Donoghue: Dublin, Ireland; PK 1975-76; ALL-AMERICAN in 1976; Neil still holds Auburn record for longest FG: 57 yards, set in 1976 vs Tennessee (since matched by Philip Yost). The lanky Irishman, standing over 6-foot-6, was playing soccer at St. Bernard College in Cullman during the 1970s. When the school eliminated its soccer program, Neil transferred to Auburn and kicked the prolate spheroid for two years. He parlayed that experience into a nine-year NFL career. His first game at Auburn was only the third football game he'd ever played in.

First post: Thursday of Week One

Hey everyone. I'm trying to calm down after a Facebook barrage. People everywhere seem to be channeling their inner Joe McCarthy these days and it irritates me. I find that using the "hide" button helps me retain composure.

This isn't a political blog, though, so enough of that.

I will create a separate thread for this, but be aware that it's CAMPFIRE DAY. We'll be holding two sessions -- one at 3 p.m. CDT and one five hours later. Please stand and sing.

Thanks for making this the hottest enclave on the entire World Wide Webz.

Here's the Auburn situation at this moment:




Auburn will practice this afternoon, though I will not be there. Chizik isn't available. Players aren't available. Assistants aren't available. So that's that.

We WILL be holding a pair of campfires today. You read that correctly. Schedules are messy this time of year, so I'm hoping everyone who wants to participate can do so during AT LEAST one of our sessions. You're welcome to attend both.

Remember that this is not one of those stale q-and-a deals you may have seen in 1996. We do it LIVE here at the HABOTN. It's true interaction. I heart HOTTIE interaction.

Be there or be rectangular.®

Here's what the next few days look like:

Thu., Sept. 3, 4:30 p.m. (no media availability)
Fri., Sept. 4, OFF
Sat., Sept. 5, vs. Louisiana Tech, 6 p.m. CDT
Sun., Sept. 6, 6 p.m.
Mon., Sept. 7, OFF
Tue., Sept. 8, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)
Wed., Sept. 9, 4:30 p.m. (Wifey's birthday; Beatles Rock Band is released)

Also, please pick up the Advertiser's print edition if you live around here! Our fine Auburn coverage is only one element of our award-winning product.

Days to kickoff: 3

Our Tar Heel Tiger's Auburn Minute is brought to you by the number:


How many times do I have to remind you, do your school work first!

Three of our nominees received All-SEC honors during their Auburn careers, but only one was selected Academic All-SEC.

* Jorge Portela: Miami, Fla.; PK 1977-79; ALL-SEC in 1977; ACADEMIC ALL-SEC in 1978 & 1979 with a major in electrical engineering. Ranks in Auburn's Top 10 in career scoring and FGs made. His longest made FG: 52 yards. His best game came during his sophomore year when his five FGs, including a 51-yard kick, enabled Charlie Trotman to emerge a winner in his first start at quarterback. The Tigers entered that Oct 29, 1977, game against the Florida Gators as underdogs, sporting a 3-4 record. John Crane had started the first seven games. Coach Doug Barfield decided to play Trotman for a while, but Trotman had other ideas. He played well enough to stay in the entire game, completing nine of his 14 passes for 177 yards and a TD. Jorge Portela's five FGs provided the margin of victory as the Tigers downed the Gators, 29-14.

Jorge Portela is the son of Cuban refugees. Jorge's niece, Lindsay Portela, signed a LOI to compete in equestrian and recently arrived for her freshman year on the Plains.


Gardner Jett: Atlanta, Ga.; PK 1970-72; ALL-SEC in 1970. His 42-yard FG with less than 10 minutes to play put Auburn on the board in the 1972 Iron Bowl. His 2nd PAT put Auburn ahead, 17-16. It was one of the most memorable days of my life, and I believe the FG was the longest of Mr. Jett's AU career to that point.

He nailed a 52-yard kick during the 1972 Gator Bowl as Auburn trounced the Colorado Buffaloes 24-3.

* Kevin Porter: Warner Robins, Ga.; CB 1984-87; ALL-SEC in 1987.

* Al Del Greco: Key Biscayne, Fla.; PK 1980-83; a solid kicker who won the 1984 Sugar Bowl with 3 FGs as Auburn defeated the Michigan Wolverines, 9-7. He ranks in Auburn's Top 10 in career scoring and FGs made. His longest FG at AU: 52 yards. He had even greater success in the NFL, playing 17 seasons with the Packers, Cardinals, and Oilers/Titans. Al spends a lot of his time on the radio these days, as does the man who overshadowed him in the SEC, Georgia's Kevin Butler.

* Rusty Williams - Moncks Corner, S.C.; RB 1996-99; led Auburn in rushing in 1996 and 1997, with a total of 716 yards during those two years.

First Post: Wednesday of Week One

Hey everyone. Thanks for visiting yesterday. Our traffic numbers were 20% higher than usual, which means we were the top-read Advertiser element by an even wider margin.

That makes me happy.

Yesterday was a somewhat interesting day, all in all. We've been talking about all these youngsters Auburn will play this season, but things look different when you see them on an official depth chart. Gene Chizik had no problem discussing his team's relative inexperience -- a Tommy Tuberville staple -- but then insisted youth isn't an excuse for poor play. That wasn't a Tuberville staple.

Dee Ford as a backup DE is astounding to me. He's 220 pounds at best. That might work until Auburn plays Tennessee. Then Ford's health must be considered. He looks like a wideout to me.

We're still aiming to Campfire® on Thursday. Two shindigs; one around 3 CDT and one around 8 CDT.

Here's the Auburn situation at this moment:




Auburn will practice this afternoon, though I am not planning to attend. Players are off-limits after Tuesdays during the season, which means Wednesdays are useful only for getting assistant coaches not named Malzahn or Roof. I don't need them at the moment.

So it could be a pretty sedate afternoon here at the HABOTN. Thursday, with its two campfires and possibly a Tiger Talk run-down, will be more hoppin'.

Here's what the next few days look like:

Wed., Sept. 2, 4:30 p.m.
Thu., Sept. 3, 4:30 p.m. (no media availability)
Fri., Sept. 4, OFF
Sat., Sept. 5, vs. Louisiana Tech, 6 p.m. CDT
Sun., Sept. 6, 6 p.m.
Mon., Sept. 7, OFF
Tue., Sept. 8, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)
Wed., Sept. 9, 4:30 p.m. (Wifey's birthday; Beatles Rock Band is released)

Also, please pick up the Advertiser's print edition if you live around here! Our fine Auburn coverage is only one element of our award-winning product.

Video report, 9/1

I have disabled auto-play for this video.

Want to see it again? Missed it the first time?


Thoughts on the depth chart

Hey everyone. I said earlier that there were items to discuss regarding the depth chart. Let's do it.
  1. Hot Carter not in the picture: I thought he seemed healthy last time I saw him on a practice field, so I'm not sure what to make of this. Chizik was asked about Carter and I found his answer intriguing:
    Again, I don’t go into the injury situation, but right now, we don’t anticipate him playing on Saturday.”
    Notice that he doesn't say it's an injury situation. Those are two separate statements.

  2. Dee Ford as a backup: It's a misnomer. Sure, Ford technically is Antonio Coleman's backup. When Coleman comes off the field, though, don't look for Ford unless it's third-and-long. I think Zach Clayton and/or Nick Fairley will play that spot before Ford's name is discussed.

  3. DeAngelo Benton as a backup: Not exactly. The depth chart presented below is based on a two-receiver set. That won't happen very often. When Auburn uses three wides, Benton will be in the game.

  4. The second-tier linebackers: Ouch. I don't think Jonathan Evans is healthy. Harris Gaston is another freshman who missed time with an injury. Adam Herring practiced last week for the first time since November. I can't imagine Ted Roof feeling good about the situation here.

  5. Eltoro Freeman: Is he ready to play at an acceptable level? We're supposed to talk with him tonight. I'll report back.

UNRELATED NOTE: I saw Eric Smith in front of the Athletic Complex this afternoon. He seemed in good spirits. Same for Aubrey Phillips.

LIVE BLOG: Chizik presser

Hey everyone. The Head Coach is here.

  • He says the La Tech game will be "fun."

  • On learning more about his team Saturday: "Two-a-days is different because alls you know is from going against each other. The great thing about the first game is that you get a starting point. I don't know where we're at right now."

  • Daren Bates is a starter now: ``Immediately when he got on campus here, he got our attention. He did some things that make you go: Wow. We force-fed him football ... just to see what he could handle. We thought he could handle it. We feel like he's our best option back there right now. Mentally, he gets it. We're going to go with it."

  • So many young guys at wideout: "Can they catch the football. Can they run their timing routes? We've got some young guys you're going to see play a lot. We wish we didn't have to play this many young ones, but it is what it is. They've all done a great job of coming in here and trying to learn the offense. We're going to play the ones who we feel like give us the best chance."

  • On the tailbacks and offensive line: ``We know we have to run the football. We have experienced guys there. They've been there and done that. That's going to be a big part of what we're trying to accomplish. We're going to lean heavily on that. I say that, but I know we need to throw the ball as well."

  • Says there will be "10 to 12" new names you'll have to get used to seeing. (ie freshmen)

  • On Hot Carter: "I don't go into the injury situation. We're not anticipating him playing this weekend."

  • On Eguae and Dee Ford: "We feel good about them."

  • Is a first game useful when assessing Chizik?: "There's a lot of unknown factors. You have a new offense, a new defense and on top of that, you're throwing in 10 to 12 freshman. I don't know what people will read into and what they won't."

  • ``There are growing pains that come along with a young team. We're going to be very demanding on them. We also knows what comes with the newness. That's not an excuse. We won't use excuses."

  • He thinks "Coach Dooley" is doing a heck of a job ($1 to Brownie) at Louisiana Tech. The Bulldogs are basically the best team ever in the history of college football. Chizik is super high on this team. "This is a great challenge. This team has been together for three years, this team we're playing. They have a lot of confidence."

  • On LTU: "They're a physical team and they're very well-coached. Usually, if you want to see how tough a team is, look at their run stats." (I'm guessing LTU's defense is good against the run)

  • First game here vs. first game at Iowa State: "It's a lot different. Two years ago, I was going into my first game as a head coach. That's all behind me. As far as the head coaching thing ... it's really night and day. I'm really excited to be back here."

  • On Kodi Burns: "He's going to be in the game. He's going to be playing. You're going to see him at several different spots."

  • On monitoring his players' safety (in light of Brandon Deaderick's situation): "Am I concerned about them on a daily basis? Absolutely. Every one of them. I worry about everything -- getting an education, on the field, off the field. We've always got our players in mind."

  • "Eric Smith is not playing in this first game."

  • On regaining swagger: "You find out on game day. There are a lot of things that happen on game day -- good, bad and indifferent. I don't know if you can measure that before you get out on the field and play."

That's a wrap.

Photo credit: Todd Van Emst/Auburn University

The official depth chart

Hey everyone. Here is the Tigers' first official depth chart of the season.


  • SDE: Mike Goggans, Dee Ford
  • DT: Mike Blanc, Nick Fairley
  • DT: Jake Ricks, Zach Clayton, Derrick Lykes
  • WDE: Antonio Coleman, Nosa Eguae
  • SLB: Craig Stevens, Jonathan Evans
  • MLB: Joshua Bynes, Harris Gaston, Wade Christopher
  • WLB: Eltoro Freeman, Adam Herring
  • CB: Neiko Thorpe, Demond Washington
  • CB: Walt McFadden, Harry Adams
  • FS: Daren Bates, Drew Cole
  • SS: Zac Etheridge, Mike Slade

  • "1" (quarterback): Chris Todd, Neil Caudle, Tyrik Rollison
  • "4" (tailback): Ben Tate, Onterio McCalebb
  • "3" (utility back): Mario Fannin, John Douglas, Gabe McKenzie
  • "9" (outside receiver): Darvin Adams, DeAngelo Benton, Emory Blake
  • "2" (outside receiver): Terrell Zachery, Kodi Burns
  • "5" (utility receiver): Tommy Trott, Philip Lutzenkirchen, Jay Wisner
  • RT: Andrew McCain, Vance Smith
  • RG: Mike Berry, John Sullen
  • C: Ryan Pugh, Bart Eddins
  • LG: Byron Isom, Jorell Bostrom
  • LT: Lee Ziemba, Jared Cooper

Days to kickoff: 4

Our Tar Heel Tiger's Auburn Minute is brought to you by the number:



Chris Shelling: Columbus, Ga.; CB/SS 1991-94; ALL-SEC in 1993 and ALL-AMERICAN in 1994; tied for 7th place with 11 career interceptions, Chris' interception return average of 21.3 yards trails only David Langner.

Shelling led AU with 4 picks in 1992. His most outstanding game was vs LSU in 1994. Shelling had 18 tackles, recovered a fumble for a touchdown, and made a game-saving interception in the end zone with 15 seconds remaining to preserve a 30-26 win. For that performance, Chris was named SEC Player of the Week. He was also one of three finalists in 1994 for the Jim Thorpe Award.

Junior Rosegreen : Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; S 2001-04; ALL-SEC and ALL-AMERICAN in 2004; led the team with 6 interceptions in 2004. Rosegreen matched a 65-year-old SEC record and set an Auburn record with four intercepted passes off Volunteer quarterbacks Erik Ainge and Brent Schaeffer during Auburn's blowout 34-10 win in Knoxville in 2004. Both teams were ranked in the Top 10 entering the game.


* David Beverly: Sweetwater, Ala.; P 1970-72; ALL-SEC First Team punter in 1971; NFL career spanned 7 seasons with the Oilers and Packers.

* David Irons: Dacula, Ga.; CB 2004-06; David won a JUCO national championship with the Butler County (Kansas) Community College Grizzlies. He enrolled at Auburn in January 2004 and earned a starting position at cornerback during spring practice. He missed the entire 2004 season due to a knee injury. He had two productive years at corner in 2005 & 2006, tying for team lead in interceptions as a senior.

First post: Tuesday of Week One

Hey everyone. I love that Jeff Lebo said the basketball schedule unveiled yesterday is "very demanding." How so?

It's Tuesday of a game week. That means we have more coverage than usual. See below for a full schedule. OK, I'll tell you here. Gene Chizik's press conference starts at 11:30 and we'll be LIVE BLOGGIN' FOR YOUR NOGGIN'® throughout what promises to be an average and otherwise non-descript event.

We're still aiming to Campfire® on Thursday. Two shindigs; one around 3 CDT and one around 8 CDT.

Here's the Auburn situation at this moment:

  • None.



Auburn will hold its final full-speed, full-contact workout this afternoon. Before that, though, Gene Chizik will hold his first Tuesday press conference. I may or may not be able to video it because of these silly restrictions we discussed a few weeks ago.

I will live blog Chizik's thing. I will provide a post-practice report tonight. I may or may not do a post-practice video. That generally means I will, but you never know what will happen between now and then. I may get sick. I may win the lottery. I may discover a new element. Crazy things occur at times.

Here's what the next few days look like:

Tue., Sept. 1, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)
Wed., Sept. 2, 4:30 p.m.
Thu., Sept. 3, 4:30 p.m.
Fri., Sept. 4, OFF
Sat., Sept. 5, vs. Louisiana Tech, 6 p.m. CDT
Sun., Sept. 6, 6 p.m.
Mon., Sept. 7, OFF
Tue., Sept. 8, 4:30 p.m. (Chizik presser at 11:30 a.m. CDT)

Also, please pick up the Advertiser's print edition if you live around here! Our fine Auburn coverage is only one element of our award-winning product.

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