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Coffee and Magnolia: 27 March 2015

News and notes from the Auburn corners of the Internet

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

BRACKET CHALLENGE

I'll have the Final Four of the Bracket Challenge up around noon, today. If you hurry you may be able to get some last-second votes in for Round 3! Last I checked almost every category was within 2-3% points, so this is a very tight race.

GYMNASTICS

All-SEC Honors were handed out, yesterday. Apparently Gymnastics does things a bit differently than most other sports and only awards All-SEC honors based on SEC Tournament action. I say this because otherwise it's hard for me to fathom Caitlin Atkinson - with her multiple all-around titles - not receiving All-SEC Honors. Head Coach Jeff Graba was awarded SEC Coach of the Year for the second year in a row, and three Tigers were named All-SEC. Lexus Demers, Megan Walker, and Abby Milliet (who was also named Freshman All-SEC).

DIAMOND TIGERS

Baseball is in Starkville to take on Mississippi State and Softball is in Columbia, MO to take on Missouri.

FOOTBALL

Yesterday was Thursday, which means I reviewed another position unit on the 2014 football team! This time it's the offensive line. After looking at offensive stats I've decided that the 2014 offensive line performed much better than I thought they did as I was watching them live.

Auburn expects the offense to not miss a beat from 2013 to 2014. If you read the above review of the offensive line, you'll see that I pointed out that in many ways the 2014 offense was BETTER than 2013. Now imagine that with a better passing game. Fun, right?

Avery Young is back out at right tackle after his foray into playing guard in 2014. He's having a good time with it. Young toyed with the idea of going pro after the 2014 season, so I imagine he probably will go pro after 2015 if he continues to perform as he has in his first two years on the Plains.

If there's one player Auburn fans are really excited about in the defensive backfield in 2015 it's Tray Matthews. He's been impressing defensive coordinator Will Muschamp on and off the field this spring. Matthews is extremely talented, and should be a key cog in the defense with the departure of Jermaine Whitehead. As much as I liked Whitehead, I think Matthews will be an upgrade. Let's just hope he's learned how to knock passes down.

If you can't make it to Auburn and want to watch the A-Day game live, you're going to have to have the SEC Network+ option through your internet. That's going to be the only way to watch the complete game. The SEC Network alternate TV channel will be providing look-ins to Auburn, Alabama, and LSU. Hopefully it's available to watch a replay of, since I'll be at drill during the game. This will be the first A-Day since I was deployed in 2010 that I've missed.

Mel Kiper, Jr has updated his draft projections, and there aren't really any changes for the former Tigers going into the draft. Sammie Coates is still projected early 2nd round - even though Kiper, Jr. says he has late 1st round talents. Nick Marshall and Reese Dismukes are mid-rounders. What may be surprising is that Kiper, Jr. thinks Pat Miller may end up drafted on Day 3 rather than getting an UDFA try-out.

It doesn't really directly address Auburn, but I wrote something about Michigan's coaching staff coming to Prattville to be "featured" in a high school football camp. It's a growing trend among Big Ten schools, where "guest coaching" is not prohibited by the by-laws, so their head coaches are able to skirt around some loopholes in NCAA rules.