Friday, December 30, 2005

Irons and Calhoun Share Similar Stories

When Auburn take the field against Wisconsin on Monday, all eyes will be on the running back position and the battle between Kenny Irons and Wisconsin's Brian Calhoun.

These two backs share a lot of similarities. Both are transfers. Calhoun left Colorado after Gary Barnett wanted him to play wide receiver. Irons left South Carolina after not getting enough playing time.

The results have been stellar for both. Calhoun set a school record with 23 touchdowns and is tied for second nationally with USC's LenDale White.

You know the story on Irons. He leads the conference in rushing with 1205 yards despite hardly playing in the first two games. Irons even fell to second on the depth chart at one point in the season. That all changed when Brad Lester was injured during the Arkansas game.

Both Irons and Calhoun were first-team all conference selections. Expect Calhoun to be a formidable challenge for Auburn's defense.

Click here to read more on these two running backs...

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Wisconsin Takes The Day Off

Every coach has his own philosophy when it comes to coaching in bowl games. Tommy Tuberville hardly worked his team during the month of December. When they did practice, a great deal of the work went to the underclassmen.

However, since arriving in Orlando, Tuberville has maintained a structured practice schedule while still giving a lot of work to his scout team players.

Wisconsin's Barry Alvarez took it a step further by giving his players the entire day off on Thursday. What works best? We'll find out Monday afternoon.

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Wisconsin Media Picking Tigers

Wisconsin's media is not giving their Badgers much chance of winning this year's Capital One Bowl. The CBS affiliate in Madison, Wisconsin has picked the Tigers to win big by the score of 34-17.

It's always scary to be a big favorite against a quality opponent like Wisconsin. I hope our players aren't reading the papers. I'm sure the coaches will have them ready to play.

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Irons Finds Creases In 'D'

Here's some great coverage on Kenny Irons from the Orlando Sentinel. With a solid performance against the Badgers, Irons should position himself as a serious Heisman contender next year. Let's hope he can talk his brother David in to coming back for his senior season. Imagine having two brothers on the same team both being named All-SEC. It will probably happen if David returns.

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Wisconsin Giving A Lot Of Love To McNeill

Marcus McNeill is getting a lot of attention these days and not just from the media. The primary focus of Wisconsin's defensive game plan is getting around the Outland Trophy finalist and consensus All-American. They know the key to stopping Auburn's running game is finding a way to get around the talented McNeill.

The Badgers run defense is among the worst in the Big 10. The only way for them to have a chance is to contain McNeill. Here's another good story from the Madison, Wisconsin newspaper that talks about the talented Marcus McNeill.

Click here to read...

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Three For The Ages

While Auburn's running game gets most of the attention, the three Tiger senior receivers who take the field for the last time on Monday have been pretty special.

It's hard to believe it has been four years since Ben Obomanu, Devin Aromashadu and Anthony Mix came to the Plains and established what has been arguably the best group of receivers to ever play at Auburn at any one time.

Mix needs one catch for only one yard to pass the 1000 yard mark in career receptions. Should he do it (and we know he will) he will join Obomanu, Aromashodu and Courtney Taylor in the 1000 yard club.

Let's enjoy these guys one last time Monday afternoon. They have brought us some special memories. Here's a great story on the three of them...

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Taylor Looking To Get His Groove Back

This season has been forgettable for Courtney Taylor. Coming into the year Taylor was a preseason All-SEC selection. But after suffering an injury during the Ball State game, Taylor has been mostly quiet.

With that said, he did make arguably the biggest play of the year when he recovered Devin Aromashodu's fumble in the end zone against Georgia.

Believe it or not, Taylor is still looking for his first touchdown reception of the year. After having nearly 800 yards in catches a year ago, he only has 264 yards on 20 catches.

Here's a good story on Taylor and how he's working to get his game back...

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Alvarez Says Auburn Is Not Any Faster Than The Better Teams In The Big 10

Stereotypes die hard. When you talk about the Big 10 you hear about the size of the linemen and how physical they play. In the SEC it's all about speed and quickness.

Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez says Auburn is fast but not any faster than the better teams in the Big 10. We'll see what Kenny Irons has to say about it on Monday.

In this story Alvarez talks about the speed of Auburn and the challenges they will face in handling it.

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Just Another Home Game For Boise State

You couldn't ask for a better fourth quarter of football than last night's MPC Computers Bowl in Boise, Idaho. Unfortunately for Boston College you could ask for a better bowl game.

I've been to Boise on five different occasions and I must say that Boise is one of the great secrets of the West. I've loved every visit I've made there. I even got my picture made on the famed blue turf at Boise State's Stadium.

But my Dad made a good point. How many times has the home team played in this game? When I turned the game on yesterday I was surprised to see there wasn't even an attempt at covering up the fact that this game was just another Broncos home game.

The 50 yard line was covered with the Boise State logo. There was no sign of Boston College even playing in the game. Then while surfing the net last night I found this article by a writer from the Boston Globe.

There is no doubt that the players from Boston College have been screwed. I hope the NCAA takes action to prevent home teams from playing every year in their own bowl games.

Click here to read the story...

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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Tigers Hold First Practice In Sunny Orlando

Auburn held its first practice in Orlando on Tuesday and then headed to Gatorland for its first official outing. Part of the festivities included a contest between Coach Tuberville and Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez in which they competed to see who could pull an alligator the fastest on to a platform. That's one victory I'd be glad to give to Wisconsin. The only good gator is a dead one...

ORLANDO, Fla. - The Auburn football team resumed preparations for the 2006 Capital One Bowl by holding its first practice in Orlando on Tuesday at Freedom High School. The Tigers worked out for a little more than two hours under sunny skies and warm temperatures.

"We had a good practice," said Auburn head coach Tommy Tuberville. "We were a little stale from last week, but we're starting to come around. We're going to have a lot of contact for the next three days and then we'll start pulling off of that. The guys are in good spirits. They're excited about being down here and the weather."

Auburn opened the practice with special teams work before focusing on individual drills. Auburn's first and second teams worked against each other, and the Tigers also focused on scout team preparation.

Tuberville said Auburn will try to make sure the players have a good time while in Orlando, but the Tigers are still intent on running their bowl-game winning streak to four.

"As coaches, we approach any game the same, whether its a bowl game here or in Atlanta or New Orleans," Tuberville said. "But the thing we want to do is to make sure the guys enjoy it and have fun. It's supposed to be fun. It was hard getting to this bowl game and we're going to make the most of it. It's going to be a great game."

Tuesday evening, the teams from both Auburn and Wisconsin visited Gatorland, where the activities included a contest between Tuberville and Wisconsin head coach Barry Alvarez to see which coach could pull an alligator by the tail out of the water and onto a platform first. The teams also watched a gator wrestling demonstration before enjoying a cookout at the park.

Auburn will practice at 9:30 a.m. EST Wednesday before heading to Tinker Field for a "Day for Kids" activity. The Tigers were originally scheduled to visit the Magic Kingdom on Wednesday afternoon, but will instead spend time at Epcot Center.

Seventh-ranked Auburn will be making its sixth straight bowl appearance when the Tigers take on No. 21 Wisconsin at the 2006 Capital One Bowl on Jan. 2. The game starts at 12 p.m. CT and can be seen live on ABC.

Report Courtesy of the Auburn Athletic Department

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Wisconsin's Take On The Auburn Defense

Here's a great story that gives Wisconsin's take on Auburn's defense. The Badgers passing game coordinator (don't ask me) Paul Chryst compares the Tigers defense it faced two years ago in the Music City Bowl to the one it will face Monday. His take is very interesting. This is good reading...

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Funeral Services For Former Tiger Set For Thursday

As you have probably heard by now former Auburn noseguard Harold Hallman passed away this week. His death hit me like a ton of bricks. He's someone I haven't thought about in a long time but the mention of his name brings back wonderful memories.

Hallman helped anchor the defense of those great Auburn teams of the early 1980's. Along with Ben Thomas, Greg Carr and Doug Smith, Hallman lead one of the best defenses to ever wear orange and blue.

Below are the details of his funeral services on Thursday courtesy of Inside the Auburn Tigers...

Macon, Ga.--Funeral services are scheduled on Thursday for former Auburn University All-SEC football player Harold Hallman.
Services are set for 1 p.m. EST at the Beulah Land Bible Church in Macon, Ga.

Hallman earned All-SEC honors for Coach Pat Dye's Tigers as a senior in 1985. He was a three-year letterman who played on the 1983 SEC Championship team.

Hallman died Dec. 23 in a Macon hospital after surgical complications. He is survived by mother, father, twin sister, two daughters and two sons.
Hallman was a popular player with Auburn fans and his teammates who was known as a hard-working and very strong football performer.

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Here's Your Bowl Season Television Schedule

I hope you have your new recliner broken in because this is the best week of the year for college football fans. From today through next Wednesday we have wall-to-wall college football. Beginning with the Alamo Bowl all the way to Pasadena and the Rose Bowl you can catch all the action on the tube.

Our friends at ESPN have put together the entire bowl game television schedule for you. Click here to see the times and networks for all the big games.

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Monday, December 26, 2005

It's Game Week!

By now I'm sure you've gained five pounds, wondered why you spent so much money and have vowed to do it all differently next year. Snap out of it. It's game week and Auburn needs you with your head screwed on straight.

We are seven days away from kick-off of this week's game with Wisconsin. Don't let anyone tell you the Capital One bowl is not important. We've got an opportunity to win 10 games and finish in the top 5 for the second consecutive year.

A win next Monday and Auburn joins the elite of college football. I know what you are thinking. We are already there. We won 13 games last year. I'm talking about joining the elite who are there each and every year - the teams that finish consistently in the top 10.

Auburn's future has never looked brighter. The Tigers will be a preseason top 10 team next year. Our recruiting class looks to be one of the best ever. We need to win next Monday.

Don't think 10 wins doesn't make a difference heading to the off season. It's a lot easier going through winter workouts and spring practice when you have won your last one.

So put the tree up and pack up the decorations. It's game week and it's the last one for a long time. If you are headed to Orlando, below is a schedule of events taking place this week. It should be a good time...

Wednesday, December 28, 2005
4 p.m.
AU Team visits Magic Kingdom/Epcot

Thursday, December 29, 2005
7 a.m.
FCA Breakfast (First Baptist Orlando)
3:30 p.m.
AU Team visits Universal/Island of Adventure

Friday, December 30, 2005
11 a.m.

25th Annual Orlando Citrus Parade (AU Band, Cheerleaders)
Downtown Orlando
3:15 p.m.
AU Band Marching Performance along Hollywood Boulevard
and through Disney/MGM Studios Theme Park
4 p.m.
AU Team visits Sea World

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Capital One Bowl Kick-Off Luncheon
Renaissance Orlando
TICKET INFORMATION: 407-839-3900 or
After December 29, contact: 407.423.4276
3:15 p.m.
AU Pep Rally, Stairs of New York Library
Universal Studios
6 p.m.
Universal Orlando Resort New Year's Eve Party
8 p.m.-2 a.m.
Orlando Auburn Club New Year's Eve Party

Sunday, January 1, 2006
6-8 p.m.
Tiger Talk
Renaissance Orlando Atrium
7:35 p.m.
AU Band Marching Performance along the World Showcase
Promenade in Epcot

Monday, January 2, 2006
10:45 a.m.

Tiger Walk
Gate D, South End of Stadium
11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Capital One FanFest
McCracken Field at Citrus Bowl Stadium
1 p.m.
Auburn vs. Wisconsin

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Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Christmas Truce

I'm going to step away from football today and share with you my favorite Christmas story. I'm sure some of you have read it.

During Christmas 1914, with World War I in full swing an amazing thing happened on the front lines in Europe. It was a bitter cold winter and both England and Germany had lost many men that year.

Both sides believed Christmas would be non-existent that year. In fact, the British leadership had warned it's commanders along the front lines that the Germans may launch a surprise Christmas attack.

What transpired was truly amazing. It has been more than 90 years since this event took place and yet today it's still just as unbelievable as it was then.

Below is a letter from a British soldier to his sister back in England written on Christmas Day 1914. Enjoy...

Christmas Day, 1914

My dear sister Janet,

It is 2:00 in the morning and most of our men are asleep in their dugouts—yet I could not sleep myself before writing to you of the wonderful events of Christmas Eve. In truth, what happened seems almost like a fairy tale, and if I hadn’t been through it myself, I would scarce believe it.

Just imagine: While you and the family sang carols before the fire there in London, I did the same with enemy soldiers here on the battlefields of France!

As I wrote before, there has been little serious fighting of late. The first battles of the war left so many dead that both sides have held back until replacements could come from home. So we have mostly stayed in our trenches and waited.

But what a terrible waiting it has been! Knowing that any moment an artillery shell might land and explode beside us in the trench, killing or maiming several men. And in daylight not daring to lift our heads above ground, for fear of a sniper’s bullet.

And the rain—it has fallen almost daily. Of course, it collects right in our trenches, where we must bail it out with pots and pans. And with the rain has come mud—a good foot or more deep. It splatters and cakes everything, and constantly sucks at our boots. One new recruit got his feet stuck in it, and then his hands too when he tried to get out—just like in that American story of the tar baby!

Through all this, we couldn’t help feeling curious about the German soldiers across the way. After all, they faced the same dangers we did, and slogged about in the same muck. What’s more, their first trench was only 50 yards from ours. Between us lay No Man’s Land, bordered on both sides by barbed wire—yet they were close enough we sometimes heard their voices.

Of course, we hated them when they killed our friends. But other times, we joked about them and almost felt we had something in common. And now it seems they felt the same.

Just yesterday morning—Christmas Eve Day—we had our first good freeze. Cold as we were, we welcomed it, because at least the mud froze solid. Everything was tinged white with frost, while a bright sun shone over all. Perfect Christmas weather.

During the day, there was little shelling or rifle fire from either side. And as darkness fell on our Christmas Eve, the shooting stopped entirely. Our first complete silence in months! We hoped it might promise a peaceful holiday, but we didn’t count on it. We’d been told the Germans might attack and try to catch us off guard.

I went to the dugout to rest, and lying on my cot, I must have drifted asleep. All at once my friend John was shaking me awake, saying, “Come and see! See what the Germans are doing!” I grabbed my rifle, stumbled out into the trench, and stuck my head cautiously above the sandbags.
I never hope to see a stranger and more lovely sight. Clusters of tiny lights were shining all along the German line, left and right as far as the eye could see.

“What is it?” I asked in bewilderment, and John answered, “Christmas trees!”

And so it was. The Germans had placed Christmas trees in front of their trenches, lit by candle or lantern like beacons of good will.

And then we heard their voices raised in song.

Stille nacht, heilige nacht . . . .

This carol may not yet be familiar to us in Britain, but John knew it and translated: “Silent night, holy night.” I’ve never heard one lovelier—or more meaningful, in that quiet, clear night, its dark softened by a first-quarter moon.

When the song finished, the men in our trenches applauded. Yes, British soldiers applauding Germans! Then one of our own men started singing, and we all joined in.

The first Nowell, the angel did say . . . .

In truth, we sounded not nearly as good as the Germans, with their fine harmonies. But they responded with enthusiastic applause of their own and then began another.

O Tannenbaum, o Tannenbaum . . . .

Then we replied. O come all ye faithful . . . .

But this time they joined in, singing the same words in Latin. Adeste fideles . . . .

British and German harmonizing across No Man’s Land! I would have thought nothing could be more amazing—but what came next was more so.

“English, come over!” we heard one of them shout. “You no shoot, we no shoot.”

There in the trenches, we looked at each other in bewilderment. Then one of us shouted jokingly, “You come over here.” To our astonishment, we saw two figures rise from the trench, climb over their barbed wire, and advance unprotected across No Man’s Land. One of them called, “Send officer to talk.”

I saw one of our men lift his rifle to the ready, and no doubt others did the same—but our captain called out, “Hold your fire.” Then he climbed out and went to meet the Germans halfway. We heard them talking, and a few minutes later, the captain came back with a German cigar in his mouth!

“We’ve agreed there will be no shooting before midnight tomorrow,” he announced. “But sentries are to remain on duty, and the rest of you, stay alert.”

Across the way, we could make out groups of two or three men starting out of trenches and coming toward us. Then some of us were climbing out too, and in minutes more, there we were in No Man’s Land, over a hundred soldiers and officers of each side, shaking hands with men we’d been trying to kill just hours earlier!

Before long a bonfire was built, and around it we mingled—British khaki and German grey. I must say, the Germans were the better dressed, with fresh uniforms for the holiday.

Only a couple of our men knew German, but more of the Germans knew English. I asked one of them why that was. “Because many have worked in England!” he said. “Before all this, I was a waiter at the Hotel Cecil. Perhaps I waited on your table!”

“Perhaps you did!” I said, laughing.

He told me he had a girlfriend in London and that the war had interrupted their plans for marriage. I told him, “Don’t worry. We’ll have you beat by Easter, then you can come back and marry the girl.”

He laughed at that. Then he asked if I’d send her a postcard he’d give me later, and I promised I would. Another German had been a porter at Victoria Station. He showed me a picture of his family back in Munich. His eldest sister was so lovely, I said I should like to meet her someday. He beamed and said he would like that very much and gave me his family’s address.

Even those who could not converse could still exchange gifts—our cigarettes for their cigars, our tea for their coffee, our corned beef for their sausage. Badges and buttons from uniforms changed owners, and one of our lads walked off with the infamous spiked helmet! I myself traded a jackknife for a leather equipment belt—a fine souvenir to show when I get home.

Newspapers too changed hands, and the Germans howled with laughter at ours. They assured us that France was finished and Russia nearly beaten too. We told them that was nonsense, and one of them said, “Well, you believe your newspapers and we’ll believe ours.”

Clearly they are lied to—yet after meeting these men, I wonder how truthful our own newspapers have been. These are not the “savage barbarians” we’ve read so much about. They are men with homes and families, hopes and fears, principles and, yes, love of country. In other words, men like ourselves. Why are we led to believe otherwise?

As it grew late, a few more songs were traded around the fire, and then all joined in for—I am not lying to you—“Auld Lang Syne.”

Then we parted with promises to meet again tomorrow, and even some talk of a football match. I was just starting back to the trenches when an older German clutched my arm. “My God,” he said, “why cannot we have peace and all go home?”

I told him gently, “That you must ask your emperor.”

He looked at me then, searchingly. “Perhaps, my friend. But also we must ask our hearts.”

And so, dear sister, tell me, has there ever been such a Christmas Eve in all history? And what does it all mean, this impossible befriending of enemies?

For the fighting here, of course, it means regrettably little. Decent fellows those soldiers may be, but they follow orders and we do the same. Besides, we are here to stop their army and send it home, and never could we shirk that duty.

Still, one cannot help imagine what would happen if the spirit shown here were caught by the nations of the world. Of course, disputes must always arise. But what if our leaders were to offer well wishes in place of warnings? Songs in place of slurs? Presents in place of reprisals? Would not all war end at once?

All nations say they want peace. Yet on this Christmas morning, I wonder if we want it quite enough.

Your loving brother,

Note: I'm going to be taking a few days off to enjoy Christmas with my family. I'll resume next week with reports from Orlando. Thank you for visiting and I hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas. War Eagle!

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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The Tide's Not Just Bad On The Field...They Are Also Stupid!

If this doesn't take the cake then nothing does. When it looked like Bama's year couldn't get any worse, the NCAA releases on Tuesday the graduation rate for all Division I schools.

And guess what? Bama is dead last in the SEC. That's right, out of 12 schools the Tide is once again pulling up the ass. In fact, they were so bad graduating players they ranked fifth from the bottom among Division I schools.

Auburn ranked a respectable fourth in the conference.

After being pounded at Pat Dye Field we now learn that not only can they not play but they are also stupid. Of course, we've known that for years. You need only to look in the stands on game day and count teeth to realize that fact.

I've been saying it here for the last month. The Auburn Athletic Department is so entrenched as the top sports program in the state that few even argue anymore. It's hard to find a reasonable SPUAT backer to put up a fight.

Christmas is only a few days away now. What else can happen to Bama before the new year? Next thing you know they'll be playing their bowl game at 10:00 a.m. EST.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A Last Minute Auburn Fan's Gift List

By Jay Coulter
Football Saturday In The South
My guess is you haven't finished your shopping yet. The flat-screen television is out of the question as is the Capital One Bowl tickets complete with hotel and airline accommodations.

So what do you buy that special someone who loves Auburn and college football? Well here are some last minute ideas that will make anyone on your list happy...

  • Stadium Stories... By Phillip Marshall... I just finished this excellent read about the history of Auburn football. I thought I knew everything about Auburn football but Phillip actually taught me a few things. This is a must for all Auburn people. Here's the link to order... Stadium Stories.
  • ESPN College Football Encyclopedia... This is the most complete book ever written on college football. If you have a question about any team (and I do mean any team) this book has the answer. It's huge. Your friends will never stump you again. I ordered a copy today. Here's the link to order...ESPN CF Encyclopedia.
  • NCAA College Football 06 (Video Game for Playstation 2 and Xbox)... This is the most realistic college football video game around. If you know someone who doesn't have it, buy it. If you don't have it, buy it for yourself. It's as close as you'll ever get to playing in Jordan-Hare Stadium. Here's the link..NCAA College Football.
  • Auburn Sports Prints By Greg Gamble...Greg Gamble paints all the magical moments in Auburn football history. From Ronnie Brown's bruising run at Tennessee last year to Carnell's 80 yard run against Bama in 2003, Gamble has you covered. I promise you can't go wrong with one of these prints. The best place to buy is from
  • Iron Bowl Gold Book and Calendar By Daniel Moore... Daniel Moore, the famed Alabama artist (he also painted Bo Over The Top) has come out with an awesome book on the Iron Bowl. It's complete with many paintings of big moments in Auburn/Alabama history. It also includes old newspaper articles from the Birmingham Post-Herald and Birmingham News. I have to say that Moore has been very equal in his treatment of Auburn in this book and calendar. I guess that's because we're not suing him. The calendar is really cool. It has twelve paintings of big Auburn wins in the Iron Bowl. You can order it directly from Moore at
  • Tiger Rags Spirit Club... My father-in-law has been giving this to me for more than 10 years and I still look forward to it every year. For $50 you get five game day shirts plus 20% off all purchases made at the Tiger Rags Store in Auburn. But the best part is the annual sale. Usually on the first Saturday in December the store opens for Spirit Club members to shop at a 50% discount. And that's on everything in the store. It has become an Auburn tradition for many. Here's the link to order...Tiger
  • Capital One Bowl T-Shirts... Every Auburn fan would love to wear one of these shirts (they come in long and short sleeves) and show it off to their Bama friends. While we'll be basking in the 80 degree Orlando sun, it will be a balmy 30 degrees in Dallas for the Tide. Here's the link to
  • 2005 Iron Bowl Video With Complete Game Broadcast...This is a hot item this year. This video includes the entire game with extras from the post game. Commentary is provided by CSS Sports. Here's the

This should get you through the holiday season and as a bonus your family and friends will still love you.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Auburn's Basketball Program Is In Bad Shape

By Jay Coulter
Football Saturday In The South

Basketball is something I don’t usually cover on this blog. Why? Because there is usually not much to say. But yesterday, on a whim I decided to head over to the Coliseum with my Dad to watch legendary Temple coach John Chaney bring his Owls to town to play the Tigers.

Let’s get the game coverage out of the way now. Jeff Lebo’s young team was inspiring. With a team made up of mostly freshman and sophomores the Tigers handed Chaney the second worse defeat of his storied career. Auburn dominated from the start and routed Temple 73-42.

I need to admit something. I don’t attend many Auburn basketball games. I maybe go to two a year. Shame on me. From surveying the crowd yesterday I appear to be part of the norm. Let’s just say that most of the fans came dressed like old wooden seats.

My Dad and I were discussing the state of Auburn basketball and came up with some observations that I’d like to share with you. You might disagree.

Auburn is without question the worst basketball program in the SEC from an overall facilities and support perspective. Walking into the Coliseum was like stepping back into a scene from Hoosiers. The seats are old, uncomfortable and creaky. There are still seats behind the basket that appear to be folding chairs that have been glued down to the floor.

The concourse looks absolutely horrible. There are Division II programs that have much better playing facilities. It sounded like the PA announcer was a student. His voice was weak and he made many mistakes. Quite honestly it was embarrassing.

The half-time performance was the worse I’ve ever seen. There was a unicycle group (no, I’m not kidding) that performed on the court. Many were made up of children. I can live with that. Kids on unicycles, while not the most pleasant thing to watch, are something that has a cute quality to it.

It was who was with the kids that were so bad. Here’s a rule we should all live by: under no circumstances should anyone over the age of 12 ever ride a unicycle in public. Watching men in their 40’s and 50’s ride unicycles at a basketball game is something no one should be subjected to ever. Whoever booked this group should be fired today. I know it’s less than a week before Christmas but please fire them today.

Taking this young, exciting team out of the equation, Auburn basketball is a joke. It’s a shame. We talk about Mississippi State and Vanderbilt in football but we are just as bad when it comes to basketball.

I admit I’m partly to blame. I don’t come often enough. After watching that group yesterday I’ll be back. This is an exciting young bunch of players who probably won’t win much this year. But if Jeff Lebo can keep this team together for four years they have a chance to be special.

There should be a huge monument erected to Cliff Ellis. How Ellis was able to build a team with these facilities and support is amazing. Why we fired him I have no idea. Why Lebo came to Auburn I’m still not sure. But I’m glad he did. Lebo will eventually put a winning product on the court.

It’s time for Auburn to match Lebo's passion. We need a new Coliseum in the worst way. We need a more aggressive marketing campaign for this team. The players and coaches deserve it. And most importantly, so do the fans.

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Sunday, December 18, 2005

Tigers Rake In The Loot This Holiday Season

One of the great secrets of college football is that players actually get paid for playing in bowl games. Unlike the rest of the season where a few dollars from the university will get you in big trouble (see Eric Ramsey), it's perfectly legal for bowl teams to receive cash and prizes.

By earning a trip to the Capital One Bowl, Auburn is allowed to give each of its players up to $350 in merchandise. The Capital One Bowl will give each player an additional $500 in merchandise.

But that's not all folks, the players also receive gas money for the trip to Orlando. It's the only game of the year where each players is responsible for getting to the game on their own. A trip to Orlando will net each player about $400.

Upon arriving in Florida, the Auburn players will be treated like kings with trips to Disney World and Sea World. They will be lavished with big meals and nightly activities. And don't forget they still have to play Wisconsin a week from Monday.

So what kind of merchandise do our guys receive? Well this year it looks like they'll all be getting new Ipods along with watches and enough bowl clothing to outfit them through the winter.

Last year at the Sugar Bowl Auburn players received portable DVD players in addition to many other things. This year the Georgia team will be receiving custom fitted mountain bikes and Sony Playstation Portables, one of the hottest gifts of the Christmas season. By NCAA rules the teams participating in conference championships are entitled to more gifts.

It's good to see that at least once a year these college players get a reward for all of their hard work, not to mention something in return for all the revenue they bring to Auburn.

The Tigers will practice through Wednesday before breaking for Christmas.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Takeo Spikes Battles To Return From Injury

Here's a great story on former Tiger linebacker and current All-Pro Takeo Spikes. Spikes has missed most of this season with the Buffalo Bills after tearing his achilles tendon.

He has been under the care of Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham. Many wondered if he would ever play again. The jury is still out but as you'll see in the story Dr. Andrews is optimistic.

Takeo may have been the best linebacker to ever play at Auburn. Let's hope he gets back on the field soon.

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Denver Post Writer Experiences Hooters In Auburn... At Least We Know Directions On The Plains

This story has everything: Auburn football, hot women and good food. Here's a mid-western sports writer's take on our fine Hooters restaurant in Auburn. At least our girls can give directions...

By John Henderson
Denver Post Staff Writer
Tuscaloosa, Ala. - When you cover college football for a living, eating after games in towns just large enough for a football stadium and a Greek row can be problematic. Try finding fine dining in a town such as Auburn, Ala., where 90,000 fans storm into a town of 50,000 and are starving afterward.

A year ago, after a Georgia-Auburn game, I found myself actually waiting in line with a couple dozen people of obviously dubious taste. We had all gathered at Hooters, an American chain almost libelously referred to as a restaurant.

It's known for two things: one, waitress outfits of skintight fluorescent orange, size medium shorts (no larges allowed) with white push-up halters that could arouse the ashes of my Uncle Gene; two, the worst food on planet Earth.

My chicken sandwich could have very easily greased the entire manufacturing plant of U.S. Steel. The lettuce in my colleague's salad looked as if it had been used to wash windows. It was not worth the wait. The food would not have been worth enduring even if the waitresses were naked.

And the place was packed.

Why? During a recent return to Alabama, I decided to learn more about the mystery of Hooters. Actually, Alabama has some terrific restaurants. This assignment was based purely on journalistic research, although the idea didn't go over well with my Ivy League-feminist girlfriend.

"Hooters is family porn," she said, as she made my bed on the couch. "I have more respect for women wearing pasties than white jog bras because at least they're up front about what they're doing. They're selling sex."

I thought they were selling chicken wings. They also sell Hooters baby bibs, to catch any drooling (and not just from babies). They even sell Hooters model airplanes, depicting the Hooters fleet that can help whisk you off to the 375 Hooters locations in 46 states and 19 countries from Trinidad and Tobago to Taiwan. (Quick thought: What's a better indication that communism is losing its grip on the modern world: creeping privatization in Vietnam or Hooters of Shanghai?)

This time I was in Tuscaloosa and avoided the post-game chaos of a Saturday night for a mellow Sunday evening. I don't mean to stereotype the intellect of a Hooters girl. One may guide a spacecraft to Mars some day. However, the Hooters of Tuscaloosa has no candidates for NASA, that I could see.

As I drove around endlessly trying to find the place (not that I'm a candidate for flight school, either), I called on my cell to get directions. Not a single Hooters girl in the place could tell me where it is. I am not making this up.

They had to call the male general manager to guide me. When I walked in, a blond goddess who looked no more than 18 took my drink order and immediately sat down.

"So how is your day going?" she purred. (How was it going? I was sleep-deprived, I was feverishly hoping my cut from shaving wouldn't open up and I was about to take two years off my life by eating a Hooters burger.) I was honest.

"Not too well," I said, bucking Hooters' customer tradition by looking her in the eye. "Oh, really? What's wrong?" Wait a minute. A college sophomore who couldn't give me directions to her place of work is going to psychoanalyze my deep-seated problems of anxiety and self-loathing? Never mind. Bring me a bacon cheeseburger.

Actually, she turned out to be quite nice. She made me admire Hooters girls, not for their appearance, but for their on-the-job training in defending abject sexual harassment. I asked her what's the worst one-liner she ever received.

One guy said, "Did you know you can burn off 2,000 calories during sex?"' she said. "I said, 'Well, I guess I've burned off mine for the day." He said, 'Wanna burn off a few more?"'

He didn't get tossed out of the restaurant, but some do. Touching is not tolerated; neither is vulgarity. How their food passes the vulgar test, I'll never know.

The bread on my cheeseburger was so soggy with grease I could see the dubious beef through the bun. The tangled mass of French fries, piled so high they formed a total eclipse of the TVs, were so slick with grease they appeared to be moving.

"The food is - uh-hum - the Buffalo chicken sandwich is good and so are the chicken strips. That's about it," said Krystle Wolfram, a former Hooters girl I met when she waited on me at Tanner's sports bar in Kansas City. "The rest of it is just grease. It's guy food."

Wolfram, 24, a Hooters girl for five years in Kansas City and Myrtle Beach, S.C., revealed some Hooters secrets that probably aren't very surprising. Management requires every Hooters girl to squeeze into no bigger than medium shorts. To stay thin on lunch breaks, girls often brought in healthier food such as Subway. Are there weigh-ins?

"No," she said. "A couple girls got heavy, but they don't last long. They don't make the tips the small girls make." Which is exactly why waitresses sit down and chat. I remember this happening to me once in a bar in Bangkok.

"I only did it to the ones who tipped me good," Wolfram said. "If they tipped good the first time, and I saw their face again, I'd pull them to my section."

I doubt my waitress in Tuscaloosa will grab me by the arm when she sees me. That's OK. I won't be back.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Another Sack For The Tide!

Well I guess Mike Shula is back to being stupid again. Despite being pounded in the ground by Auburn a few weeks back, Mike Shula for a while seemed to be getting his mojo back.

To listen to the callers into the Paul Finebaum Radio Show, Mike Shula was a recruiting genius. He knew how to go into homes and recruit. That theory came crashing down at 4:00 p.m. CST Tuesday, when highly sought after Florida prep quarterback Tim Tebow committed to the University of Florida.

For a year now all we've heard is how Tebow is the best quarterback ever to come out of high school. From Bama webmaster Rodney Orr to Forrest Davis, all said he was a lock for the Tide. He was going to be the next Joe Namath and Kenny Stabler all combined into one.

You can bet that in the morning the Birmingham papers will be downgrading him in their prep recruiting rankings. They'll say he was just another Billy Ray. They'll make comments like Shula realized in the end that he didn't fit their offense. Yeah right.

By 6:00 Tuesday night Bama callers phoning local radio shows were saying that Shula had blown it. Many were saying that he's lost his edge and that this will have a big effect on the rest of the recruiting season. My what a difference 24 hours can make.

Tide fans were so enthralled with the Tebow sweepstakes that they were even tracking Mike Shula's flight path on the internet over the last couple of days. Don't believe me? I don't blame you... I wouldn't either unless I saw it myself. Here's the link:

Yes, this holiday season just seems to get better by the hour. If you're Mike Shula it can't get over quick enough.

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Two More Auburn Assistants Considered For Head Coaching Positions

With Al Borges still a candidate at San Diego State and running backs coach Eddie Gran staying at Auburn, two more Tiger assistants are being mentioned for head coaching positions.

Auburn wide receivers coach Greg Knox and linebackers coach Joe Whitt have both been mentioned as strong candidates for the head coaching job at Division II powerhouse Tuskegee.

Also in the running is former Alabama State coach L.C. Cole who was fired this year after a 20-15 record over three years. The job opened up after Rick Comegy accepted the head coaching job at Jacksonville State.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Gouging and Auburn Football Just Go Together

Face it. If you are an Auburn fan you are used to being gouged. It happens so much now that most of us take it for granted. Whether it’s donating unbelievable amounts of money to Tigers Unlimited for nose-bleed seats in the upper deck of Jordan-Hare or stopping by your favorite book store for that sharp $70 orange knit shirt that could be had for $20 without the AU on it, Auburn people seem to hardly notice anymore.

Today I purchased three Capital One Bowl tickets. What does that set you back? Well the tickets cost $70 each. Stop and think about that for a minute. Don’t let it just roll off your eyes.

For $70 I get the honor of probably sitting in the far reaches of the stadium in Orlando to watch my Tigers battle a mediocre Big Ten school that we played just two years ago. Oh, did I add that there is a $3 handling charge for each ticket? What exactly is a handling charge? I bought them online and everything was automated. Who exactly did the handling?

Now granted, these prices were set by the bowl organization so I can't blame Auburn for the ticket prices. Still, $70 is high by most anyone's standards.

But what I found tonight online takes the cake. I was scrolling the Auburn Athletic Department web site and found the merchandise section. I thought to myself this might be a place to do a little Christmas shopping.

Boy was I in for a shock. For only $349.99 I can get an autographed ball by either Carnell Williams or Ronnie Brown. I did a double-take. Are you kidding? The athletic department is charging $350 for an autograph football?

Now I know for a fact that Ronnie and Carnell have already been back once this year since joining the NFL. I also know that if you catch either one of them they’ll sign a ball for free. Where did they get that price point?

Does our athletic department really have to charge its fans this much? At most they have $50 in the whole deal. Do they need to profit $300 a ball? Is this Jay Jacobs way of increasing revenue? I can’t believe our Athletic Department would so blatantly gouge its own fans by using the signature of former players.

And I must add that after doing some research on ebay tonight that price is higher than anyone else offering Ronnie or Carnell’s autographed footballs. Now you could upgrade and purchase Tampa Bay and Miami jerseys signed by Carnell (for Tampa Bay) and Ronnie (for Miami) for a mere $499.99 each.

This is courtesy of your Auburn Athletics Department. I included the link below if you are interested and have more money than sense.

We are conditioned to be gouged by our Auburn book stores. We even expect bowl tickets to be outrageous. But when your school’s athletic department gets into the memorabilia business and at a hefty profit, then something is bad wrong. Didn’t the University profit enough from these guys while they were in school?

Click here to be bent over...

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See What You Have To Look Forward To On New Year's

For a $70 ticket you can spend New Year's with this guy. Isn't that Blue from Old School?

Monday, December 12, 2005

Houston Nutt Interested In Sullivan For Razorbacks Quarterback Coach

Former Auburn Heisman Trophy winner Pat Sullivan was one of two finalist interviewed again yesterday for the Middle Tennessee State head coaching job. Unfortunately for Sullivan, the job went to South Carolina assistant coach Rick Stockstill.

But all is not lost for Sullivan. Arkansas coach Houston Nutt appears interested in hiring him as the Razorbacks quarterback coach. This week, Nutt hired unknown high school coach Gus Malzahn as its new offensive coordinator.

There is no word on whether Sullivan is interested in the position. He currently serves as offensive coordinator at UAB and also served stints as head coach at TCU and offensive assistant at Auburn.

Current Tigers running back coach Eddie Gran was also interviewed by Middle Tennessee State and was thought to be the leading candidate for a while.

Offensive Coordinator Al Borges remains under consideration for the coaching job at San Diego State.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Breaking News...

From The You've Got To Be Kidding Me File...

It appears that Rutgers students are so pumped about their appearance in this month's Insight Bowl that well, they need a little something for the effort.

That's right, the school's alumni along with the state government are paying students $300 to make the trip to Phoenix.

There's still no word on how much Auburn's administration will be paying its students to make the trip to Orlando. Hold you breath on that one. Here's the rest of the story...

Rutgers students who want to cheer on the Scarlet Knights at the Insight Bowl are getting some financial help from the university.

About 275 Rutgers students will be randomly selected to receive $300 stipends for travel expenses to the Dec. 27 game in Phoenix. The game against Arizona State is only Rutgers' second bowl appearance and its first in 27 years.

"The university encourages students to support the football team at the Insight Bowl. Events like these enrich the college experience," said Gregory Blimling, Rutgers' vice president for student affairs.

The travel money comes from more than $85,000 donated by alumni and others, including a $25,000 state donation authorized by acting Gov. Richard J. Codey.

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Saturday, December 10, 2005

This Auburn Team May Lose More Than Last Year's

In the back of our minds we all new this day was coming. With success comes better opportunity. And that's not just for the players. A pair of Auburn coaches are getting the attention of other schools.

Running backs coach Eddie Gran appears to be the front-runner for the head coaching job at Middle Tennessee State. And now reports out of San Diego have Al Borges as a candidate for the head coaching job at San Diego State University.

Gran has been credited with developing Carnell Williams, Ronnie Brown and Kenny Irons. He's well thought of in the coaching profession and appears to have the inside track.

Ironically, another strong candidate is former Auburn Heisman Trophy winner Pat Sullivan. After battling and beating cancer, the former TCU coach has made it clear that he wants another head coaching opportunity.

Both Gran and Borges are deserving of top jobs. But like most Auburn fans, I hate to see them go. While losing Carnell, Ronnie and Jason Campbell was tough, the possibility of losing Gran and Borges would be even tougher.

Let's wish them the best of luck and keep our fingers crossed that they stay a little longer on the Plains.

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McNeill Named To Walter Camp All-American Team

Orlando - Auburn senior offensive tackle Marcus McNeill was named to the prestigious Walter Camp All-America team Wednesday. The 116th Walter Camp team was announced Thursday at the Home Depot College Football Awards show in Orlando.

McNeill, a Decatur, Ga., native, was named the Jacobs Trophy winner on Wednesday, presented annually to the Southeastern Conference's top blocker.

A Sports Illustrated first-team All-America and Outland Trophy finalist, the 6-9, 338 pound McNeill is also was named an Associated Press and Coaches' All-Southeastern Conference First Team in 2005. McNeill has not allowed a sack in 41 consecutive games, dating back to his freshman season.

The Auburn offensive line, led by McNeill, has helped lead the Tigers to an SEC-best 34.2 points and 425.6 yards per game, including 202.7 yards per game rushing. This season, the Auburn offense has amassed seven 200-plus yard rushing games and nine individual 100-plus yard games on the ground.

McNeill is the 16th Auburn player to be named to the Walter Camp team joining safety Buddy McClinton (1969), quarterback Pat Sullivan (1971), wide receiver Terry Beasley (1971), linebacker Ken Bernich (1974), linebacker Gregg Carr (1984), running back Bo Jackson (1985), tailback Brent Fullwood (1986), center Ben Tamburello (1986), linebacker Aundray Bruce (1987), defensive tackle Tracy Rocker (1987, 1988), guard Ed King (1989, 1990), defensive lineman David Rocker (1990), punter Terry Daniel (1993), punter Damon Duval (2001) and defensive back Carlos Rogers (2004).

Courtesy of the Auburn Athletic Department

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Our Coach Heads Into The College Football Hall Of Fame

Well he did it. Last night our coach, Pat Dye was finally inducted into the College Football Hall Of Fame. For me, there is only one coach and that’s Pat Dye.

I love Tommy Tuberville. And I’m sure I’ll like the one who follows him. But for me, there will always be only one coach and that’s Pat Dye. For my father’s generation it was Shug Jordan. And what a man he was. I take nothing away from him.

But if you grew up in the 70’s and 80’s there was and is only one coach and that is Patrick Fain Dye. He is without question my favorite Auburn person – of all times. I’ve written about it before; when you’re from my generation and were in junior high before beating Alabama for the first time (that we could remember) Dye holds a special place in your heart.

For a kid who grew up worshiping at the altar of Auburn football, Pat Dye was as close to an angel as they came. It has been said all over again this week but it’s worth saying again – Pat Dye was and is the most influential figure in the history of Auburn football.

He not only took us out of the shadow of Bear Bryant, he put us on the national stage. He made us relevant again. He took us to bowl games, won conference championships, beat our rivals regularly, produced Heisman, Lombardi and Outland Trophy winners and most importantly set the stage for what we are enjoying today.

Never forget Dye’s contributions. Without him there is no 85,000 seat stadium, there is no multi-million dollar athletic complex, there are no SEC Championships, there are no Bo Jackson’s, Brent Fullwood’s and there is no Tommy Tuberville.

That’s right, without Dye setting the stage and righting the program, we wouldn’t be where we are today. We wouldn’t have Coach Tuberville; we couldn’t pay him $2 million a year and compete with Florida, Tennessee, LSU or Georgia. And we certainly wouldn’t own the state of Alabama like we do now.

Congratulations Coach Dye. An entire generation thanks you for giving us hope and then delivering on it. Because of you, Auburn is better today than it has ever been. You may have gone into the College Football Hall Of Fame last night, but you’ve been in Auburn’s all along. War Eagle!

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Frank Solich Must Be Back On The Bottle

The USA Today/Coaches Poll released the individual votes of its coaches in its final regular season poll. After last year's controversy where Auburn was screwed out a shot at the national championship, the Coaches Poll agreed to show the public how each coach voted in the final regular season poll.

Tommy Tuberville ranked Auburn at number four while former Nebraska coach and current Ohio University leader Frank Solich put the Tigers at a shocking 13th.

Solich was convicted of DUI charges last week after being found unconscious in his car while it was running. One can only wonder if he hit the bottle once more when making out his top 25 selections.

What a loser. First he can't win with the best recruits in the country and now he can't stay sober enough to vote right in the national polls. Do we need a playoff or what?

Click on the link below to see how many of the SEC coaches voted. This is very interesting stuff. Houston Nutt of Arkansas put Auburn at number three. He's not as big a nut as I thought.

Click here to read the entire story...

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Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Eleven Tigers Named To All-SEC Team

AUBURN, Ala. - Three Auburn football players have been named to the 2005 Associated Press Southeastern Conference First Team, while eight others were named to the second team or as honorable mention selections, it was announced Monday.

Senior offensive tackle Marcus McNeill, junior running back Kenny Irons and junior punter Kody Bliss all received first team honors, with McNeill and Irons being named as unanimous selections.

McNeill repeated as a first-team all-conference honoree after helping pave the way for the SEC's top-ranked offense. The Tigers lead the SEC in scoring (34.2 points per game) and total offense (425.6 yards per game) in addition to third-down conversions (47.9 percent) and sacks allowed (17).

McNeill, one of three finalists for the Outland Trophy, has played 41 consecutive games, including 38 starts, without allowing a quarterback sack. He was named the Coaches' Offensive Player of the Week for his performance during Auburn's 48-7 victory over South Carolina Oct. 1, and was part of the offensive line unit that was named the Coaches' Offensive Player of the Week following a 34-17 victory at Arkansas Oct. 15.

In his first season on the Plains, Kenny Irons burst onto the scene by leading the SEC in rushing, averaging 109.5 yards per game. He has rushed for more than 100 yards in eight of his last nine contests, averaging 130.1 yards per game with 13 touchdowns during that stretch.

Irons, who ranks tied for ninth on Auburn's single-season rushing chart with 1,205 yards, posted a career-best 218 yards on the ground Oct. 22 at LSU, which is the 14th-best single-game total in Auburn history.

His eight 100-yard rushing games this season are tied for second best in a single season in Auburn history, while his current streak of six consecutive 100-yard games is second best and one short of Joe Cribbs' school-record of seven.

Bliss leads the SEC in punting, averaging 44.8 yards per punt. Ten of his 38 punts have travelled 50 or more yards, while he has placed 11 punts inside the opponents' 20-yard line. He booted a career-best 63-yard punt Oct. 22 at LSU.

Six Tigers, including five on defense, were named to the AP All-SEC Second Team. Auburn's second-team selections include junior offensive guard Tim Duckworth, senior linebacker Travis Williams, senior nose guard T.J. Jackson, senior cornerback David Irons, junior defensive end Marquies Gunn and junior safety Will Herring.

Duckworth has been instrumental in Auburn's offensive success, grading out at 101 percent during Auburn's 31-30 win at Georgia Nov. 12 and 99 percent during a 34-17 victory at Arkansas Oct. 15. Duckworth had 22.5 pancake blocks through the team's first 10 games and was part of the offensive line unit that was named the Coaches' Offensive Player of the Week for the Arkansas game.

Williams' 62 tackles ranks second on Auburn this season, and he has added 2.5 sacks, 5.5 tackles for loss and an interception. He had a team-high 11 tackles Oct. 1 against South Carolina, and matched that total during Auburn's Iron Bowl victory over Alabama, while also posting 1.5 sacks. He was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week following the South Carolina game.

Jackson has started all 11 games this season, posting 40 tackles including two quarterback sacks and 5.5 tackles for loss. Jackson had five tackles and 1.5 sacks during Auburn's 28-18 victory over Alabama, and had a season-high six tackles, including 1.5 for losses, Oct. 1 vs. South Carolina. Jackson also recorded five tackles apiece Sept. 10 vs. Mississippi State, Oct. 15 at Arkansas and Oct. 22 at LSU.

David Irons has played in and started 10 games this season, and ranks tied for third in the SEC with 10 passes defended. Irons has accumulated 37 tackles including 27 solo stops, and has 2.5 tackles for loss. Irons led the Tigers with six tackles Nov. 12 at Georgia and added three pass break-ups.

Gunn has started all 11 games for Auburn this year, totaling 39 tackles. He leads the team and ranks seventh in the SEC with 12.5 tackles for loss, and also has 4.5 sacks and a team-high 15 quarterback hurries. Gunn was named SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week following his performance vs. Ole Miss Oct. 29, when he recorded six tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss (-11), a sack (-4) and two quarterback hurries. He has made at least one tackle for loss in nine of Auburn's 11 games this season.
Herring, who has started a team-best 35 straight games during his career, leads Auburn with 64 tackles this season. He was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week following a 28-0 victory over Mississippi State Sept. 10, when he had five tackles including half a sack and recovered a fumble for a touchdown.

He was named the Coaches' Defensive Player of the Week after tying for the team lead with seven tackles at Arkansas, had a career-best 13 tackles in the season opener Sept. 3 vs. Georgia Tech and tallied nine stops Nov. 5 at Kentucky.

Auburn rounded out its selections with two players given Honorable Mention recognition: senior offensive tackle Troy Reddick and junior defensive end Stanley McClover. Reddick played in all 11 games, starting 10, pushing his career starts total to 39. Reddick, who also filled in occasionally at center, graded out at 99 percent in Auburn's victory at Georgia.

McClover came on strong late in the season, posting 15 tackles, 9.0 tackles for loss (-52) and 6.5 sacks (-46) in the last three games alone. He was the SEC Defensive Player of the Week after collecting six tackles, including four for loss and 3.5 sacks, against Alabama. McClover finished the season tied for the team lead with 12.5 tackles for loss and ranks sixth in the SEC with seven sacks.

No. 7 Auburn will be making its sixth straight bowl appearance when the Tigers take on No. 21 Wisconsin at the 2006 Capital One Bowl on Jan. 2 in Orlando, Fla.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Yawn! Auburn To Meet Wisconsin In Capital One Bowl

As expected Auburn was shut out of the BCS on Sunday and will head to Orlando to meet 20th ranked Wisconsin for the second time in three years. This will mark Auburn's third appearance in the Capital One Bowl under Tommy Tuberville.

While it's certainly an honor to be picked by the Capial One Bowl, the opponent Auburn will face could be better. The big spin will be that it's Barry Alvarez's final game as the Badgers head coach, to which I say, who cares?

This entire BCS and bowl crap gets worse every year. Who can get excited about playing Wisconsin when you just finished beating two top 12 teams in a row? Oh well, the Tigers could be Bama headed to cold Dallas, Texas.

Click here to read Mark Murphy's story from Inside The Auburn Tigers...

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2005 Bowl Game Match-Ups Announced

Here's your complete schedule of the 2005 Bowl Season. Listed below are the locations, times and networks carrying the games.

The Capital One Bowl featuring Auburn and Wisconsin will kick-off at 1:00 pm eastern on January 2nd and will be televised by ABC Sports.

Now let's pray they don't pick Terry Bowden to provide color commentary. In case you didn't know, Bowden lives in Orlando. Would that not just add insult to injury?

New Orleans Bowl
Southern Miss (6-5) vs. Arkansas State (6-5)
Lafayette, La. Dec. 20, 8 p.m.

UTEP (8-3) vs. Toledo (8-3)
Mobile, Ala. Dec. 21, 8 p.m.

Las Vegas Bowl
BYU (6-5) vs. California (7-4)
Las Vegas, Nev. Dec. 22, 8 p.m.

Poinsettia Bowl
Colorado State (6-5) vs. Navy (7-4)
San Diego, Calif. Dec. 22, 10:30 p.m.

Fort Worth Bowl
Kansas (6-5) vs. Houston (6-5)
Fort Worth, Texas, Dec. 23, 8 p.m.

Sheraton Hawaii Bowl
Nevada (8-3) vs. UCF (8-4)
Honolulu, Hawaii, Dec. 24, 8:30 p.m.

Motor City Bowl
Memphis (6-5) vs. Akron (7-5)
Detroit, Mich. Dec. 26, 4 p.m.

Champs Sports Bowl
Clemson (7-4) vs. Colorado (7-5)
Orlando, Fla. Dec. 27, 5 p.m.

Insight Bowl
Arizona State (6-5) vs. Rutgers (7-4)
Phoenix, Ariz. Dec. 27, 8:30 p.m.

MPC Computers Bowl
Boise State (9-3) vs. Boston College (8-3)
Boise, Idaho Dec. 28, 4:30 p.m.

MasterCard AlamoBowl
Michigan (7-4) vs. Nebraska (7-4)
San Antonio, Texas Dec. 28, 8 p.m.

Emerald Bowl
Georgia Tech (7-4) vs. Utah (6-5)
San Francisco Dec. 29, 4:30 p.m.

Pacific Life Holiday Bowl
Oregon (10-1) vs. Oklahoma (7-4)
San Diego Dec. 29, 8 p.m.

Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl
Minnesota (7-4) vs. Virginia (6-5)
Nashville, Tenn. Dec. 30, Noon

Vitalis Sun Bowl
Northwestern (7-4) vs. UCLA (9-2)
El Paso, Texas Dec. 30, 2 p.m.

Independence Bowl
South Carolina (7-4) vs. Missouri (6-5)
Shreveport, La. Dec. 30, 3:30 p.m.

Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl
Miami (9-2) vs. LSU (10-2)
Atlanta Dec. 30, 7:30 p.m.

Meineke Car Care Bowl
South Florida (6-5) vs. NC State (6-5)
Charlotte, N.C. Dec. 31, 11 a.m.

AutoZone Liberty Bowl
Tulsa (8-4) vs. Fresno State (8-4)
Memphis, Tenn. Dec. 31, 1 p.m.

Houston Bowl
TCU (10-1) vs. Iowa State (7-4)
Houston, Texas Dec. 31, 2:30 p.m.

AT&T Cotton Bowl
Texas Tech (9-2) vs. Alabama (9-2)
Dallas, Texas Jan. 2, 11 a.m.

Outback Bowl
Iowa (7-4) vs. Florida (8-3)
Tampa, Fla. Jan. 2, 11 a.m.

Toyota Gator Bowl
Louisville (9-2) vs. Virginia Tech (10-2)
Jacksonville, Fla. Jan. 2, 12:30 p.m.

Capital One Bowl
Wisconsin (9-3) vs. Auburn (9-2)
Orlando, Fla. Jan. 2, 1 p.m.

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
Notre Dame (9-2) vs. Ohio State (9-2)
Tempe, Ariz. Jan. 2, 4:30 p.m.

Nokia Sugar Bowl
West Virginia (10-1) vs. Georgia (10-2)
Atlanta Jan. 2, 8:30 p.m.

FedEx Orange Bowl
Penn State (10-1) vs. Florida State (8-4)
Miami, Fla. Jan. 3, 8 p.m.

Rose Bowl
USC (12-0) vs. Texas (12-0)
Pasadena, Calif. Jan. 4, 8 p.m.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Under Armour To Be Official Outfitter Of Auburn Athletics

What a deal! Auburn's new $10 million deal with Under Armour is the biggest apparel deal in college football. In addition to the pay-out, Auburn will be spotlighted in a series of national commercials with the company. Here's the story from the Auburn Athletic Department...

Auburn, Ala. - Auburn University Thursday announced it has signed a five-year contract with Under Armour Performance Apparel (NASDAQ: UARM) to be Official Outfitter of the university's athletic teams. The announcement was made jointly by Auburn Athletic Director Jay Jacobs and Under Armour Founder and CEO Kevin Plank. Auburn's athletic teams will wear Under Armour uniforms, cleats, apparel and accessories beginning in the summer of 2006.

The five-year contract is worth over $10.6 million in sponsorship, product and additional benefits.

"We are extremely excited about our new partnership with Under Armour," Jacobs said. "Under Armour is the leader in performance apparel and their products and focus on improving performance will be a tremendous benefit for Auburn's student-athletes.

"The commitment Under Armour has made to this program is a strong indicator of the value that Auburn Athletics possesses. This partnership will give Auburn a wealth of marketing opportunities and national exposure."

Founded in 1996, Under Armour is the originator of performance apparel, a line of moisture wicking microfiber clothing that pulls perspiration away from the skin to keep athletes cool, dry and light throughout the course of a game, practice or workout.

"This will be a great advantage for our program," Auburn football coach Tommy Tuberville said. "Under Armour will provide our athletes and staff with a competitive advantage by wearing the finest apparel and uniforms available."

"Under Armour was created to provide athletes with a competitive advantage," said Plank, whose company announced its upcoming debut of cleated footwear in a recent commercial campaign. "We see this partnership with Auburn as the perfect opportunity to help take its student-athletes and athletic department to that next level of performance.

"Auburn is an exceptional university with a top-notch athletic program and we're especially pleased that its teams will be wearing Under Armour footwear."

Under Armour is known for its PROTECT THIS HOUSE marketing campaign, and is the official supplier of performance apparel to National Lacrosse League, Major League Lacrosse, the National Hockey League, USA Baseball and the US Ski Team.

Under Armour is available worldwide through its web site and at more than 8,000 retail locations worldwide including Dick's Sporting Goods, The Sports Authority, Hibbett Sports, Modell's, Academy and The Sports Chalet.

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Friday, December 02, 2005

PGA Interviews Coach Tuberville

Tommy Tuberville is known as one of the best golfers in all of college football. He and Steve Spurrier vie for top honors in the Southeastern Conference each year. Here's an interview with Tuberville by Tuberville says he's around an eight handicap but can get lower during the off season. Not bad coach!

Click here to read...

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Vote For Alaina!

It's time to vote for one of our own (and boy am I proud to call her one of ours). Auburn cheerleader Alaina Carson is one of the finalist for Athlon Magazine's Cheerleader of the Year. She's behind in the voting, so let's get busy.

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Pickens County Herald Says Power Has Shifted To Auburn

Here's another excellent column on how the power in this state has shifted to Auburn. Kevin Strickland of the Pickens County Herald writes a similar article to the one I did last week on how the power in this state has without question shifted to the Tigers.

His spin is that it has been taking place for 2o + years now. He makes some excellent points.

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