Tuesday, August 08, 2006

It's Time To Get Comfortable With Lofty Expectations

I always wince when I read a pre-season publication that has Auburn ranked in the top 5. Let's face it, we don't handle these lofty expectations very well. I still have nightmares over what happened 20 years ago in Knoxville when Auburn went into the game with Tennessee ranked number one in the land. After going through three quarterbacks in four quarters, our season was essentially over.

Now we are faced with lofty preseason expectations again. That's a good thing right? It does say a lot about a program when you can be a perennial top 10 team each year.

I was visiting collegefootballnews.com yesterday and looked over their bowl projections for the 2006 season. I kept scrolling down the page and Auburn was nowhere to be found - until I got to the end and that's where I saw it. Auburn is picked by the respected web site to play for the national championship against USC. Thanks but no thanks for the publicity.

CFN had this to say about the Tigers, "Auburn is due. Like LSU, Texas and Ohio State over the past few years, Auburn has been knocking on the door long enough to finally get the right breaks to get a shot at the title. With many still feeling the Tigers got screwed over a few years ago, the voters would give the Tigers the nod if everything else is equal. The schedule works out well getting LSU, Florida and Georgia at home, but there can't be a loss to Alabama in the regular season finale."

They make a good point. We absolutely have been knocking on the door. Take away the bowl game and last year was pretty darn incredible. Tommy Tuberville does have us knocking on the door every year. Don't look now, but Coach Tuberville has a chance to be on equal footing with the guy that the field is named for.

I'm not saying he's in Coach Dye's league - yet. We are two or three more recruiting classes away from having a chance to compete for the national championship on a yearly basis. That's not bad for a guy who was fired two years ago.

Click here to read the College Football News.com bowl projections...

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