As we continue our march to kickoff, we take a look at the top 100 recruits to sign with Auburn of all-time*. The rankings are based on 247’s composite recruit rankings, which unfortunately only date back to 2000.
In Gene Chizik’s final recruiting class, he brought in a monster offensive line group, some of which as already been detailed in this countdown. The jewel of this class was top 100 player Avery Young, out of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Young was a signing day commit to the Tigers, and ended up being the top ranked signee in Auburn’s 2012 class.
When Young came to Auburn a little undersized at 6’6” and 280 lbs, it was thought that he would redshirt in order to bulk up. However, Auburn needed help at tackle right away, and Young impressed the coaches enough to earn the season opening start at right tackle. Unfortunately, injuries cut his freshman campaign short, and Young’s season was over by the LSU game. Fellow freshman Pat Miller would take the job the rest of the year.
As every story in this countdown goes, things got dramatically better for Young in 2013. Miller had held on to his job as the right tackle going into the 2013 season, but after shaky performances by the OL in the LSU loss and Ole Miss wins, Young earned back the starting job. He would start the final 9 games of the season, and it was around this time the Auburn offense took off and never looked back. Starting with the Western Carolina game, the Auburn offense put up 62, 45, 45, 35, 55, 43, 34, 59, and 31 points, spearheaded by a read option and power run attack that took full advantage of a dominant offensive line. Of course, Young’s most famous moment from the season came in the immediate aftermath of the Kick Six.
Young became a key cog on the right side of the Auburn offensive line in his junior and senior seasons, starting all but one game the rest of his career (Alabama A&M in 2015). He would bounce around some, starting a few games at right guard and left guard, along with his natural position of right tackle. By the end of his Auburn career, Young would have 36 starts, an SEC title, and a start in a national title to his name. While his NFL career never took off, Young remains one of the more underrated offensive lineman at Auburn over the last decade.