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Friday Ramblings - A Train Wreck

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Train Wreck...

It seems the only thing keeping Alabama out of the title game is the fact that the final BCS polls aren't in yet. Some pundits think a big win by Oklahoma State this Saturday against their biggest rival, Oklahoma, may be enough to put them back in the title picture. Maybe so, but I doubt it.

Then there are those that actually think Virginia Tech deserves a shot at LSU.

Whatever! Winning the ACC crown is only a slightly better achievement than winning the Big East, so what? Weak conference teams, with a couple of exceptions, and a much weaker bottom half of teams, means you get to watch the championship game like the rest of us.

All I can guarantee is, if Alabama doesn't get picked #2, and get to compete in the BCS MNC game, the 'Bama faithful will go berserk. Here is a comparison of the top two one loss teams, Oklahoma State, and 'Bama

Oklahoma State
11-1
Big 12 Champions
#7 Strength of Schedule
5 wins over FBS teams with winning records
5 wins over top 25 teams
Lost to 6-6 Iowa State on the road in double OT

Alabama
11-1
SEC West runners-up
#42 strength of schedule
3 wins over FBS teams with winning records
2 wins over top 25 teams
Lost to #1 LSU at home in OT

One thing is certain, the BCS has to figure out a way to get this "non-conference champion" playing for it's title fixed, or their collapse will resemble a train wreck.

Basketball...

Auburn basketball is on the rise. The Men's program is 4-0 and will compete in the Big East-SEC Challenge against Seton Hall. The game will be televised on ESPNU at 8pm this Friday.

The Ladies are currently 5-1 and their next opponent is Temple in Philadelphia, PA

Irony....

In a not so surprising move, the University of Kansas fired Turner Gill this past week. His record while at Kansas was 5-19. How's that for a strange bit of irony?

We have all heard about those numbers in association with Gene Chizik, who was tabbed to replace Tommy Tubberville, instead of Gill.

Raise your hand if you actually think that Gill could have accomplished at Auburn what Chizik has.

Anyone?

Anybody at all?

Bueller?

Christmas Gifts.....

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What better gift to give your Auburn fiends this year than a wonderful DVD collection of Auburn's National Championship season. You can order yours here.

It might just help them get over this season, with a brighter outlook.

Recruiting...

The SEC has no less than 10 schools listed in the current top 25 in recruiting. That leaves only four conference schools outside of that ranking by rivals.com. The most surprising to me on that list is Vanderbilt at #22. Neither of the Mississippi schools made the list, nor did Kentucky or Missouri. Auburn currently sits at 7th. As auburntigerman reported earlier, Auburn picked up a huge addition to their class with 4* Linebacker Javiere Mitchell who is 6'2" 197lbs. and runs a 4.5 40.

Carousel....

With the number of head coaching vacancies likely rising to at least 10 after this weekend, it is almost a certainty that Auburn, and other SEC schools will be looking for replacements to their respective staffs.

Those schools looking for new head coaches will be Kansas, Florida Atlantic, Arizona State, UAB, Ol Miss, Illinois, Memphis, and Penn State along with UCLA, and Texas Tech becoming a real possibility as of this writing. Washington State has hired Mike Leach as their new football coach.

Sports Illustrated is reporting that Urban Meyer help Rich Rodriguez get the job at Arizona. Meyer as we know is the new guy at Ohio State.

***you won't believe what's after the jump

Urban challenges...

Yeah, I know I am not the only person to "Urbanize" the former Gator coach's name. He has his hands full at OSU and has been assured there is not going to be a "door number three, or door number 4", using the Let's Make A Deal analogy in his inaugural press conference as the new coach at Ohio State.

Still, we know he is a great recruiter, and a pretty good coach. Can he find a way to get it done at OSU? I think he can, and will. Part of his success at Florida was in part due to their incredible recruiting base. I think the only stronger recruiting base is USC.

The 20-10 rule...

This week I ran across an article by STAT Tiger that has increasing evidence of it's truth. He calls it the 20-10 rule. He has shown the correlation of Auburn football teams past success, when there are 20 players with 20 games of experience, and another 10 players with 30 games of experience. It's well worth your time to read, and certainly food for thought on our current situation.

Without realizing while I was reading it, he actually comes to the same conclusion that I have in that 2013 Auburn will become a very, very strong contender both in the conference and nationally.

How bad could it be?...

After reading this from Mr.SEC..

Only 14 seniors were on Dooley’s squad this year. Of those, none were standouts. (That’s a by-product of the 18 players lost during the Phillip Fulmer and Lane Kiffin transitions.) So the younger players on the team — and the team was made up mostly of freshmen and sophomores — had no proven, elder leaders to follow.

If you want a comparison as to how bad an inexperienced and young team can get, here it is.

Nothing that anyone else can say will sway my opinion, that this staff did an admirable job in keeping this team together. The only time I saw "quit" in any of these players was against UGA. But they bounced back against 'Bama and played hard until the end, like the champions they will become.

Swiss cheese...

Swiss_cheese_medium Auburn's offensive woes started with the offensive line looking like this picture of Swiss cheese. Really good and solid in places, and absolutely nothing at other points. We have discussed the injuries, and the youth until we are all sick of hearing it. The fact still remains, that unless a QB, or any RB can get an opportunity to make a play, that play is doomed.

We need our offensive line to look like this....

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at least when we are pass blocking, we would have a better chance at success. Which leads me to this week's pick for..

Comment of the week...

This week, was the easiest so far. The winner is KungFu Panda with part of his comment shown below...

When compling all the low stats for offensive production compared to the rest of the league, one must also look at the OL starts. We have one of the newest lines. In addition to those virgins we also had new quarterbacks, especially Moseley and Frazier.Even though Moseley and Frazier appear to have more individual talent than Chris Todd of 2009, Todd was an experienced senior who had played in the SEC. He also had the same OL who had been together for the third year.

The old soldiers this year were Blake, Lutzenkirchen, McCalebb and Dyer. Who were the four most productive guys on offense? Yeah, those guys. But they weren’t linemen.

Looking forward...

We all have now had some time to share our thoughts(read vent) and get used to the idea that we didn't play especially well this past season. I mean that sincerely when I say we! Yes the coaches did make some mistakes, the players did too. We as fans though, I was more disappointed in what I saw from us as a group. Let me explain...

I understand the principle of raising Cain when a paid athlete, or coach makes a bad decision, or isn't getting the job done. You paid your money, and they are getting paid to perform. I get that. What bothers me is a growing number of people who want to chime in, either during a game, or for the rant afterward, and call out our Tigers by name, with comments such as "he sux", or "why is he even on the team?", or worse yet, "why are we wasting a scholarship on him?". There is a huge difference in being critical of one's performance and verbally attacking someone. Those quotes, and many more this season were of the attack variety, and have no place here.

I would like each of us to show a modicum of restraint, when talking about our Tigers. Especially when what you post is forever there for all to read.

Remember that could be your kid out there, before you start saying inflammatory phrases. We pride ourselves on our traditions. One of our most treasured is that we are "FAMILY". Let's act like we care about each other, and show potential recruits that we are truly family here at Auburn, and Track Em Tigers.

It's the reality of it all. No matter what happens from this moment forward, we must put the past where it belongs, behind us. Moving forward doesn't mean you forget the past, you simply learn from your experiences, and get better. In life as in football, we must continue to strive to be better.

WAR EAGLE!