Happy Monday morning to y'all.
This weekend was the end of week one of Auburn's fall camp, the first time in a long time the press got to hear from Nick Marshall and Jonathon Mincy and the weekend we learned the ruling in the O'Bannon case. The gentleman and scholar known as Walt wrote about all three stories so read them if you haven't. In addition, AL.com posted videos of both players addressing reporters.
Jon Solomon, as is often the case, was the cream of the reporting crop covering the NCAA's trip to court. He dissected the meanings and potential ramifications of the decision, as well as sharing an interesting short article on Ed O'Bannon's opinion on some comparing him to baseball legend Curt Flood. Hint: he says, "I refuse to compare myself with Mr. Flood."
To the on-field stuff, and, thankfully, there's a lot...
Gus Malzahn said this upcoming week could wield major influence all over the depth chart, especially among the young guys and newcomers. Here's video of Gus talking to reporters after Saturday's practice, which wasn't the scheduled scrimmage (and neither was Sunday). This weekend's practices were also the none-to-soon returns of guard Chad Slade and (new) cornerback Trovon Reed.
Ryan Black shared a few of Rhett Lashlee's thoughts on Sunday's practice. The OC said, "(Saturday) and today we really focused more on cleaning up the base things we're going to really rep and hang our hat on and do a lot of."
The Plainsman also has a few quotes from Lashlee praising the two quarterbacks behind Nick Marshall: Jeremy Johnson and Jonathan Wallace.
His most glowing praise, however, was directed at his starter, and the pair talked yesterday about the Heisman Trophy being a possibility.
Okay, I'm just gonna bump from position-to-position here real quick to fit a few good things in.
At running back, Roc Thomas, Kamryn Pettway and Peyton Barber are in a stiff competition for what Malzahn said "in a perfect world" would be two of the three complementing the two more experienced, established backs ahead of them. Gus said two big things he's a fan of in his running backs are third down pass protection and holding on to the ball. I concur, Gustav.
The receivers caught a lot of attention this weekend, the return of Jaylon Denson in particular. Hopefully all of Louis, Bray, Denson, Ray and Davis can be healthy, reliable and consistent this season, and the players are saying all the right things to indicate they at least believe they will be.
Of course the bulk of the attention on this corps goes to Sammie Coates and, maybe even more so, his new partner in crime, D'haquille Williams.
The offensive line is pretty much set in stone for kickoff as far as the front five go (with Coleman, Slade, Dismukes, Young and Miller, L-R), but the depth behind them, coupled with the versatility of the starters, is an encouraging sign to Auburn's coaching staff that they'll be good to go come August 30, despite the loss of Alex Kozan.
Less noise was made on the defensive side of the ball (go ahead and complain if you played on that side), but there was still positive news coming from them when reporters did notice the team the offense was playing against. The L-E covers Ellis Johnson's thoughts on Cass McKinzy and his move to middle linebacker, and it's pretty much all happytalk, though as Black notes, not exactly coachspeak either. The official Auburn site has a story on Trovon Reed's move from highly touted receiving recruit to cornerback.
Finally, yesterday was Auburn's Fan Day, and a record crowd of near 10,000 came out to see players and coaches from several Tiger squads. The Plainsman's got a photo gallery where you can check out the fun.