Well...we did it. Sort of.
We made it through another crazy year of Auburn Athletics. It has been—at the same time—exciting, nauseating, awful, inspiring, emotional, full of angst, confusing, aggravating, memorable, and a bunch of other adjectives that could probably fill this entire article. It's easy to forget how long the year really felt at times now that we're at the end of it, but a lot has happened this year that you may or may not remember. Or...maybe things happened and you chose to forget them. We understand. It's not easy being an Auburn fan sometimes.
Nevertheless, we've spent the last several days trying to come up with some of the more buzz-worthy moments from Auburn Athletics in 2015 in terms of their impact on the Twitterverse. We gave you a poll earlier this week, and you performed your civic duty and voted. For this, I thank you.
Along with your votes, we at College and Magnolia have weighed our own thoughts, analysis, and opinions, and I believe I've narrowed all of this down into a pretty sweet top ten list that even David Letterman would be proud of. So, without further ado, let's ring in the new year, shall we? Here are your top ten most Twitter-worthy moments of 2015 for Auburn Athletics.
The Top Ten Biggest Auburn Athletics Moments of 2015...on Twitter
10. State Senator Tom Whatley introduces legislation that would give Auburn nine total titles
Oh, boy. Y'all remember this?
There have been plenty of Auburn folks arguing that we should claim additional national championships. I mean, if Bama lives by it, why can't we explore it, right? RIGHT? Senator Tom Whatley took it one step further (or maybe several steps...I'm not an expert on state government) by attempting to pass a resolution that would recognize an additional seven national titles.
Oh God: Senate resolution urging Auburn to claim nine national championships in football introduced. #alpolitics— Brian Lyman (@lyman_brian) August 10, 2015
Confusing? Yes. Hilarious? Absolutely. When this story first broke, there was minimal outrage from Auburn Twitter, but it was certainly enough to get some people up in arms about the whole situation. Ultimately, when Auburn decided not to recognize those titles officially, this story was just like Blake Sims—easily forgotten.
9. Charles Tuberville, aka Tuberwilly, gives us "Bangin' the Groove"
(Okay, so this isn't even really related to Auburn Athetlics, per se, but how can you not include this???)
Certainly hard to forget, we discovered that our beloved ex-head coach had a very groovy brother with a knack for beats. Charles Tuberville, aka @Tuberwilly, released "Bangin' the Groove" before the 2015 football season, and it was everything we dreamed it could be. It's a true gem in the Auburn meta universe.
It also sparked this wonderful piece of Twitter candy:
BANGIN' THE GROOVE pic.twitter.com/hTeMLQ34Vr— WarRoorn Eag1e (@WarRoomEagle) August 19, 2015
Thanks, Internet. We love you.
8. Leonard Fournette and the Flying Tigers
It really bears explaining how a man's entire Heisman campaign actually hinged on our appalling inability to tackle and our propensity for flight:
Auburn's defense said it wouldn't be hard to stop Leonard Fournette His reply: pic.twitter.com/fH97AZrlTv— BryanInNolaEast (@BryanTNR) October 14, 2015
Which reminds me...can we just let "bulletin board material" stay in 2015?
7. The Duke Williams Saga...all of it
Lord have mercy, Dhaquille. He started out with so much promise. Duke was going to dominate the field in 2014, and when he didn't, we decided that 2015 would be his year if he stayed. And hooray! He stayed!
Ugh. Not a happy ending, though. Let's rewind:
First, there was the suspension before the Outback Bowl on New Year's Day.
But with the news that he was staying for the 2015 season, things didn't seem all that bad. Sure, a loss to Wisconsin SUCKED (you know, fat guy kickers and all that), but with 2015
Heisman frontrunner quarterback anomaly Jeremy Johnson loaded in the chamber, it was a yellow brick road to the 2015 College Football Playoff...
...until it wasn't. Speculation began stirring in the spring when some questionable tweets hinting at a transfer arose on the star receiver's account, but were later deleted.
Fast forward to summer and fall practice, and once again, Duke Williams faced suspension for failing to meet team standards with his behavior, which was later cleared up (sorta) by receivers coach Dameyune Craig:
Auburn WR coach Dameyune Craig addressed the situation w/ Duke Williams. Here's full transcript of what he had to say http://t.co/XARPmlbfrz— Tom Green (@Tomas_Verde) August 14, 2015
Finally, the real deal: the dismissal:
Fly away, sweet prince. We wish you luck in the NFL. And personally, I'm sure @grantbland and I will always remember this:
6. Byron Cowart's 2015 Signing Day fiasco
This goes waaayyyy back to the beginning of the year, but it's certainly an event worth remembering. The frenzy that was National Signing Day 2015 got an additional boost of crazy when Byron Cowart's letter of intent couldn't quite find its way to Auburn's fax machine for some weird reason:
Armwood HS coach tells ESPN Byron Cowart is “undecided” after announcing, and supposedly signing with Auburn.— AuburnUndercover (@AUUndercover) February 4, 2015
Per coach Callahan at Armwood, Byron Cowart told him he was going to commit to #Auburn but not send in letter.— Mike Farrell (@rivalsmike) February 4, 2015
Florida fans felt that this meant a flip, but despite all of the rumors and speculation and updates regarding coach interference and Cowart's mother and fan intuitions, the kid finally faxed that thing to the Plains.
And despite Will Muschamp hitting the bricks for South Carolina at the end of the season, we're glad you've stuck with us, Byron. You're only going to get better here. Hopefully these early DC rumors will become clear enough so that our entire defense isn't completely screwed for next season...
5. MUSTACHE GUY
He was the Auburn fan we needed and deserved this season.
You are my sunshine, Mustache Guy. Also, happy late birthday:
4. Muschamp Hulk face
Followed by preachy Gump Twitter about how to handle oneself on the sideline during a football game.
By the way, Adele's "Hello" is totally about me still following Will Muschamp on Twitter. And yes, I'm still shocked every time I see him tweet something about South Carolina...
...but it don't matter, it clearly doesn't tear you apart anymore...
3. Kerryon (and up and over), My Wayward Son
How fitting that in the fan voting on Monday of this week, Auburn running back/wildcat quarterback/receiver/hilarious Twitterer Kerryon Johnson started from behind, but ran and hurdled his way near the top (thanks to some generous afternoon voting) for this incredible play against Arkansas? Even Olympian Lolo Jones noticed, which was a pretty cool moment for one of our favorite freshmen.
Superb! Kerryon Johnson. Prime lead leg. Trail leg snaps down. Would've gave A+ but he didn't run much off hurdle.A- pic.twitter.com/IjpJ18D4jv— Lolo Jones (@lolojones) October 24, 2015
Despite the heartbreaking overtime loss to the Hogs (bringing Bert's record against Gus to a whopping 1-2...that's still a losing record, by the way), this was definitely one of the biggest individual Twitter moments for Auburn Athletics.
Don't worry, Lolo. I'm sure Kerryon will get that form to an A+ level for next season.
2. Sunny Golloway
Goodness, where do we even start with this?
Statement from Sunny Golloway's lawyer this morning pic.twitter.com/IKbPkzS3b2— Brandon Marcello (@bmarcello) September 28, 2015
Once the allegations came to light, the situation only got messier:
Golloway' lawyer: "I think Auburn's athletic department is rotten, and it needs cleansing"— Tom Green (@AUBlog) November 2, 2015
Golloway's lawyer uses the term "Minions" and wants to rope in the AU Ticket Lawsuit into the Golloway stuff.— Kevin Ives (@AUPPL) November 2, 2015
(By the way, @AUPPL is the Twitter authority for Auburn baseball. If you're not following him right this second, make that an early 2016 resolution. NOW.)
Quick take: Golloway's lawyer doesn't seem to understand how internal NCAA-related investigations proceed.— John Carvalho (@John_P_Carvalho) November 2, 2015
"I was shocked," former Auburn baseball coach Sunny Golloway said of dismissal, AD Jay Jacobs said he wouldn't get a dime— WarEagleExtra (@wareagleextra) November 2, 2015
Brother, can you spare a dime?
In Sunny Golloway's telling, Auburn's athletic department is run by Old Man Potter from "It's a Wonderful Life" https://t.co/tHeykTh7mw— Jerry Hinnen (@JerryHinnen) November 2, 2015
I laughed at this one:
Hey Sunny, I have a list/graphic of the hats/uniforms your players wore if you're interested...— Clint Richardson® (@Clintau24) November 2, 2015
Let's just say that we're not going to miss you, and we're not going to call you like Adele would, so don't call us, either. Deuces.
1. Auburn softball and men's basketball teams make history in the postseason
It was hard to separate these two, so we didn't. Fan voting on Monday had these two moments neck-and-neck with each other, and as of today, only three votes made the difference. In a Twitter poll yesterday, fans overwhelmingly chose softball over basketball, but many of the College and Magnolia staff felt that the men's basketball run was so special because of how miraculous it seemed (not the games, per se, but because of the way the regular season had panned out). It was, to say the least, unexpected, which is why it ended up being so special.
Either way, both teams earned this top spot. The brief breakdown:
Softball head coach Clint Myers led an inspired Auburn team to a historic run in both the SEC Tournament and in the Women's College World Series in the summer. Although our girls lost in the semifinal game against eventual champion Florida, it was an unforgettable season for a spectacular group of young women who proved that hard work, perseverance, and belief in each other can propel a team to incredible heights.
I'm the proudest #Auburn alumni from watching my softball girls do the things they have done. War Eagle! Keep your heads up. Love you, #34— Bo Jackson (@BoJackson) May 31, 2015
The accolades kept coming for the team and its coach:
And oh, hey! Congrats on the Hall of Fame, Coach Myers!
Tonight's the night for Auburn's Clint Myers to go in softball's National Fastpitch Coaches Association Hall of Fame pic.twitter.com/xCWdLFwl0Z— Auburn Gold Mine (@AUGoldMine) December 4, 2015
The Auburn basketball team hadn't even won an SEC Tournament game since 2009, so naturally, they won three in a row in three consecutive days in March. The Tigers took down Mississippi State, Texas A&M, and LSU inside Bridgestone Arena, only to be defeated by perennial powerhouse and Final Four participant Kentucky (who are probably cheating, anyway, but are really just pretty damn good at basketball to begin with, so no shame, Tigers). It was a truly magical and emotional ride for a team that experienced all sorts of twists and turns in Bruce Pearl's inaugural season. Perhaps no better image describes this team's run than this one:
And honestly, who will forget this incredible buzzer beater from Auburn legend KT Harrell against LSU to send it to overtime? That man deserves a statue outside of Auburn Arena.
Summed up for all of us at the end of it:
Despite the loss today, watching the basketball team in the SEC tournament definitely ranks up there with my favorite Auburn sports memories— Brice (@dBriceJ) March 14, 2015
Regardless of which one you hold dearer to your heart, both deserve to be number one in this countdown, and even though they occurred earlier in the year, they still ought to be a great reminder of how incredible our athletic programs can be as we close the book on 2015 and open a new one in 2016. Here's to another year of the wild roller coaster that is Auburn Athletics!
War Damn Eagle, and Happy New Year, y'all!