Ever wonder if we are getting spoiled a bit? After a 20-14 squeaker against a pretty good team on the road, many Auburn fans were grumbling. Last night in his press conference, coordinator Rhett Lashlee was doing a bit of grumbling himself. So for those of us who think the sky is falling, I thought some perspective might be in order.
I will take this moment to remind you of the Tuberville days, when we squeaked by teams like Kansas State all the time...if we were lucky. In 2007, we needed a late score and a defensive touchdown to beat a K-State team that was not nearly as good as this one. At home. My guess is that performance on offense last Thursday night will be our worst of the year. And we still won. History tells us that Malzahn offenses do nothing but get better as the year progresses (unless some head coach named Nutt or Chizik decide to meddle), so let's relax a bit. Things will get fixed.
Kansas State made this game their Super Bowl. Auburn was the highest ranked team to come to the Little Apple since the 60's. They went all in and nearly came away with a Thursday night shocker. It is one of those games that builds character and toughness. Auburn will be better for it down the road.
Other random thoughts...
Just throw it up there and let him go get it. The overthrows to Sammie Coates are maddening. He's a huge target. If he's open on those go routes, I wish Nick would just throw a jump ball up there. That being said, Coates does not look 100% to me. I hope he gets well before LSU visits in a couple weeks.
Auburn's run defense is nasty. Think I'm wrong? Look at what Arkansas has done to people lately. Auburn held them to exactly 3 yards rushing in the second half of game 1. They allowed basically nothing to Kansas State last Thursday, who coming in to the game were averaging 250 yards a game on the ground.
Zone Can't Read. Nick made some poor reads against K-state, but they threw a wrinkle at him he hadn't seen much - if at all - in the past. Usually he is watching the defensive end to see if he crashes down and keeps if he does. The ends did crash down most of the time, but a safety kept flying up to meet Marshall on most of these plays. It's a good thing that we saw this so early. You can bet your bottom dollar that this will be harped on in the coming weeks.
Field Position Matters. When Auburn punts the ball 45 yards and they return it 30, Auburn loses the field position battle. It happened that way all night against K-State. When you have to drive it from deep in your own territory, it makes things harder. Some of these returns were aided by some no-calls, but the poor field position hurt us most of the night.
Around College Football in 30 seconds...
Jeff Driskell and Keihl Frasier were the most highly touted QBs in their recruiting classes. That's a pretty good reason to cancel your subscription to Rivals.
Florida is a shambles. I haven't seen receivers running that wide open since Auburn vs Texas A&M circa 2012, and the Gator offense is absolutely putrid. Will Mushchamp will be back to bleeding from his headset and screaming profanities as a defensive coordinator by next season.
Blake Sims? And yes, even though the Gators couldn't cover an elephant in a telephone booth (see what I did there?) I was impressed with Alabama's starting quarterback. I have no idea why the Alabama fan base has been so irrational and...what am I saying? It's the Alabama fan base.
Jacob Coker went home and kicked his dog Saturday night I'd guess after watching the Seminoles sputter around for most of the game Saturday night and having the guy you were suppose to easily beat out as the Bama QB throw for 450+. He'll be holding the clipboard the rest of the year in T-town. Chin up, Jake, at least you get to live in that bastion of cultural enlightenment that is Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
If there is any justice in this world, Florida State will lose at some point. Watching the cutaways to Jameis Winston Saturday night absolutely sickened me. This guy makes Johnny Manziel look like Tim Tebow.
That's all I got this week folks. War Eagle and enjoy your homecoming cupcakes!