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SNAP JUDGMENTS: #23 Auburn 30, Tennessee 17

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How do we feel heading into the Iron Bowl?

NCAA Football: Tennessee at Auburn John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Auburn guaranteed itself a .500 mark at the very least with a 30-17 victory over Tennessee last night, with the game highlighted by a couple of huge plays and a steady performance from Bo Nix in the face of more than a few offensive injuries.

What do we think? How do we take that win and look ahead to the Iron Bowl?

SNAP JUDGMENTS

It sure was ugly, but with the injuries piling up, I’ll take a win any way we can get it. Outside of an extremely questionable decision on the second drive of the game, Bo played pretty well. Shivers and DJ both had impressive showings in relief of Tank. The defense, though, showed major reason for concern. That was one of the worst rushing defense performances Auburn he’s put together in a longgg time.

The worst part of the night was by far the injuries, though. While the offense still looked capable in their absence, losing Tank, Jackson, and Hamm is the last thing you want before the Iron Bowl. Oof.

-Ryan Sterritt

27 unanswered points will win you a lot of games. Tonight wasn’t pretty, but they really didn’t have to be pretty. Style points don’t matter right now. Let’s hope all the injuries are minor and everyone is recovered for next week.

-Josh Dub

Well it’s never a good sign when your best player, 2 starting offensive linemen, and a defensive lineman all go down with injuries before the Iron Bowl. That being said though, go to hell Tennessee and Jeremy Pruitt. I’ll take this win any time we can get it.

-Josh Black

With Tank out we had to lean on Bo to move the chains, and he did it consistently. After the end zone pick, which was very bad, that might have been the best Bo has played given the game state.

The interior run defense was very bad and needs to be fixed yesterday. Other than that, most of the defensive issues were being rusty.

-James Jones

Auburn will have a winning record this season and that’s a nice thing in a pandemic-stricken season. The injuries were terrible, but shivers and Williams acquitted themselves nicely in tank’s place. We can win games with these two.Winning ugly is still winning and that beats losing, just ask Jeremy Pruitt. I bet he’d love to have more than two paltry wins this season. I really think he’s turning a corner up there you guys.Bonix is playing some efficient football as of late. He made one boneheaded play but otherwise looked really solid against a pretty consistent pass rush.

-Son of Crow

As a Tennessee resident I am thrilled that I finally have bragging rights over Vols fans in BOTH basketball and football now.

Early on, Auburn looked like a team coming off a 21 day layoff. It wasn’t the prettiest game and there’s a lot of concern going into next week. Injuries are going to be a big story losing Tank very early and then both starting tackles as well. Seth Williams also got banged up on that ridiculous catch in the 4th that wasn’t ruled a catch.

And the run defense is a major concern as well as Tennessee ran it down our throats. But a huge Pick Six from Smoke Monday along with major contributions from Shaun Shivers and DJ Williams after Tank’s injury were huge.

But before the Iron Bowl, up next.... it’s Bout That Time for Auburn Basketball!! War Eagle!

-Will McLaughlin

I admit that during that first quarter when we were getting the rust knocked off of us by Tennessee’s incessant third down conversion rate, I was one of the ones thinking that the loser of this game was on the road to being Muschamped. Then, I realized that we just hadn’t played in three weeks and we needed to get back into game shape. After that, it was a perfectly fine performance save for the run defense.

Tank Bigsby’s injury took a little figuring out, but Shaun Shivers ran angry, and D.J. Williams was as reliable as he’s been since last year. Auburn ran for 165 yards on 38 carries, and that’s a pretty solidly successful night when your top back goes down and you lose two offensive lineman for portions of the game with other injuries. The main focus in that regard is hoping that they’re back for next week, otherwise we may just be hoping for a big old COVID outbreak in Tuscaloosa.

As for Bo Nix, he was smoother than we’ve seen. With little help, he was able to overcome a bad first quarter and turn into the offensive foundation for the final three periods. A 17-26 completion line for 220 yards with a touchdown and a pick will never make you raise your eyebrows, but he completed passes to eight different targets and had three guys with at least three catches. He didn’t lock on to receivers, and he was accurate. Even with the bad first quarter, he hit 65% of his throws.

What’s troubling is the defense. Now, that may very well be rust, but Tennessee gashed Auburn in the run game, and the Tigers were bailed out by two missed field goals and the Smoke Monday pick six. Eric Gray punished us for 173 yards and a score, and Jarrett Guarantano was successful early on, especially on third downs. Going against Najee Harris next week doesn’t exactly make me feel warm and fuzzy. Still, a nice win, and it’s always a joy to be Jeremy Pruitt.

-Jack Condon

Hey JP —

-AU Chief