We’re LESS than four weeks away from Auburn football. At this time on September 3rd, we should be talking about the Chip Lindsey offense, how good Jarrett Stidham looked, the suffocating defense, and how college football being back is the greatest thing in the world. 27 days to that happy time of a Sunday spent unloading the good things from a victorious (oh God I hope) Auburn Saturday.
With that said, here are some of famous games featuring the number 27 in Auburn history.
2010 - Auburn 27, Clemson 24
Game three of the 2010 season, and we still hadn’t really seen the Auburn offense kick it into high gear. Cam Newton hadn’t turned into the monster we know he finally became, and Auburn got into a hole early.
Leading up to this game, Clemson brought in one of the biggest contingents of visiting fans that I can remember, and their fans curved around the visiting section in a way that only big annual rivals seem to bring in. The orange and purple-clad visitors also saw Dabo Swinney’s second full team open up a 17-0 lead off of two Kyle Parker touchdown passes to Jamie Harper. Wes Byrum finally got Auburn on the board with a field goal as time expired in the first half.
Just as they’d show a couple months later in Tuscaloosa, the (Auburn) Tigers loved to play in the third quarter. Midway through the period, Onterio McCalebb bounced around the left end for Auburn’s first touchdown, then Cam took over with two of his only seven completions on the game. One went to Terrell Zachery for a tip-toeing 78-yard score down the west sideline, the other to Darvin Adams with another tapdance routine in the corner of the end zone. Cam completed just seven passes on the night for 203 yards — talk about efficiency.
With the defense clamping down, the 21-point quarter gave Auburn a 24-17 lead heading to the fourth. Clemson got the tying score from Andre Ellington with twelve minutes to play, and things remained scoreless until we went to overtime.
After Wes Byrum hit a 39-yard field goal to put Auburn on top in the first overtime, Clemson nearly took the victory after a Kyle Parker pass fell just off the hands of his receiver in the end zone, so Dabo would send out Chandler Catanzaro to attempt the game-tying kick. Take a gander.
Clemson double-clutched the original snap, which moved them back five yards and messed up the kick as it went wide right into the student section. Auburn won 27-24 and went on a tear after that all the way to the national championship.
2006 - Auburn 27, Florida 17
Eleven years ago, Auburn began the season ranked 4th in the country, and got all the way up to 2nd in the polls before some guy named Gus orchestrated an Arkansas upset of the Tigers in one of those wretched 11 AM trap games.
Auburn fell all the way to 11th, but had to regroup in a hurry for Urban Meyer’s Florida Gator squad to visit Jordan-Hare Stadium. Florida had taken Auburn’s #2 ranking, and were coming off of consecutive wins over Alabama and LSU. The Gators boasted Chris Leak and Tim Tebow alternating at the quarterback position, and had figured something out with Meyer’s spread option offense.
In one of the most raucous atmospheres in Auburn history, the Tigers hung tough with Florida (whose offense was so efficient that they didn’t reach third down in the first half), and trailed just 17-11 at halftime. The odd score was comprised of three John Vaughn field goals and safety.
It was all that Florida would get on the scoreboard.
Early in the third quarter, Quentin Groves snagged Chris Leak on a third down for a huge sack, and just when you thought the stadium couldn’t get any louder, this happened.
It gave Auburn the 18-17 lead, they’d tack on another field goal and return a fumbled hook-and-ladder attempt as time expired to ruin Charles Barkley’s score prediction (he said on College Gameday that morning that Auburn would win 21-17). The loss was the Gators’ only one of the season, and they’d win the national championship, while Auburn beat Nebraska in the Cotton Bowl.
27 Years Ago - 1990
After three straight SEC Championships and two Sugar Bowls in the last three seasons, Auburn entered 1990 ranked 3rd in the country. With much of the 1989 team still intact, the Tigers were expecting big things. Stan White would enter as the starting quarterback as a freshman and throw for more than 2200 yards as he led Auburn to a Peach Bowl berth.
Still, after the way the year started, this year was a bit of a disappointment. Auburn began the year 4-0-1 with the only blemish a 26-26 tie against Tennessee in the third game of the season. Auburn dropped a couple spots in the rankings, but still sat in the top five as Florida State came in late in October for a top ten matchup at Jordan-Hare Stadium.
Tied at 17 late in the ballgame, FSU quarterback Casey Weldon tried to lead the Seminoles down the field for the winning field goal, but much to the chagrin of Bobby Bowden, this astonishing sack happened.
On 4th and 5, Weldon lost 22 yards and set Auburn up for the Jim Von Wyl game-winning kick as the Tigers emerged 20-17 and rose to #2 in the polls.
Things took a downhill turn right after that, though, as Auburn edged by Mississippi State the next week and then got trounced by Florida 48-7 in Steve Spurrier’s first season. Then Southern Miss (led by Brett Favre) nipped the Tigers while they were still licking their wounds, and Auburn fell to Alabama to end the regular season at 7-3-1. They’d accept a Peach Bowl bid, and Stan White’s naked bootleg gave the Tigers a 27-23 victory in the mud on December 29th, 1990.
Overall, 1990 started out as well as you could ask for, and if Auburn could’ve kept up the stellar play that they exhibited through most of October, they’d have been a good contender for the national championship. 1990 was a bizarre year in which Colorado and Georgia Tech split the title. The Buffaloes went 11-1-1 with some heavy-handed luck going in their favor (5th Down Game), while the Jackets went 11-0-1. What could’ve been...
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