Ha! What a game. In true Auburn fashion, we had to make it interesting, and nearly lost our first ever game to a Sun Belt team. Instead, the Tigers won 34-24 with TJ Finley coming in to spell Bo Nix and lead the game-winning 98 yard drive in the closing moments. That’ll surely spark some interesting thoughts... what say we?
Glad to get the win. Ok, cool. Now that I’ve said the obvious let me say that what I just watched was one of the most poorly coached football teams in a long, long time…if you think 2012 was that long ago. The effort was not there, the scheme continues to be stubborn on defense by overcomplicating things, and the lack of talent on offense along the OL, WR, & QB was glaring. Utah State was a better football team than Georgia State. Jacksonville State was a better football team than Georgia State. This should not have happened. I don’t care about roster deficiencies, this should not have happened. And that’s on the coaches.
Never in my wildest dreams did I think this game would go this way, and it is beyond alarming. When you can’t stop the inside zone on defense with that level of talent (even without Owen and Zackoby) you’ve got a problem, and it ain’t because the players just caught a case of stupid. The effort from the players wasn’t there in the first half, and the scheme was too stubborn defensively as well.
Offensively good for TJ Finley. Great moment for him that I never want to think about again. It was the right call to make a change, but is it the right call moving forward knowing the pressure he’s going to see the next 2 weeks? I wouldn’t bet on this being the last time we make a QB change this year because of this offensive line.
Again, I’m glad we got the win. We needed it, if for no other reason than to avoid the embarrassment of being grouped with Tennessee in losses to Georgia State. But there is now not another game on this schedule I feel confident about after feeling supremely confident coming into today. And that should alarm anyone who sat through whatever that was.
But still…HE LIVES!
September 25, 2021
It is not easy to win football games.
McClain was a +22. In hoops terms.
-Son of Crow
We had this one all the way. Never a doubt. War Eagle!
what? Y’all were scared?
That first half was one of the worst halves of AU football I have seen in some time. It looked like Harsin was on track to have a worse loss than Gus in week 4 of his first year which would truly be a feat. But then he did the thing I wasn’t sure anyone would be willing to do and pulled Bo. TJ wasn’t world’s better & AU still has a TON of problems moving forward but he made some plays in big moments & the team responded to him. Zakoby McClain’s return fixed the defense which shows just how important he & Pappoe are to this team. I don’t want to really think about the SEC schedule ahead instead I’ll enjoy a 98 yard game winning drive because regardless of opponent that just don’t happen. Oh and Jordan Hare magic is still alive and well.
Maybe we needed a guy with absolutely no ties to Auburn to have the balls to pull Bo Nix like that and get someone in there who could (and did) end up winning the game. The offense clearly responded to TJ Finley with a little more jazz than they seemed to have for Bo, but there are deeper problems. We’ve talked about the offensive line for years at College and Mag, and the chickens are coming home to roost when Georgia State pushes you around.
Defensively, that first half was one of the worst I’ve seen since 2012, and while it was great to see them play at the level we know and love one Zakoby came back in the second half, you can’t have one player be the lynch pin in such an emotional way. Auburn made all sorts of mistakes just like last week, but in the end they avoided the worst loss in modern Auburn football history and avoided a Tennessee-like fate in the process.
Harsin just needs to watch out for Pat Nix in the stands.
According to ESPN’s FPI metric, Auburn had a 8.4% chance of winning that game with two and a half minutes left. Losing to Georgia State would be an historic loss, an embarrassment no previous Auburn coach has ever accomplished. For 57 minutes, Auburn’s offense appeared completely inept. For 30 minutes, the defense somehow managed to look even worse. Perhaps Auburn underestimated Georgia State and spent all week looking ahead to LSU. We’ll never know, but if something doesn’t change in the next six days, I’m not sure Auburn can win a conference game this season.