Can Scott Loeffler Put the Auburn Offense Back Among the SEC’s Best?
By AubTigerman /firstname.lastname@example.org on August 14, 2012
Football season is two and a half weeks away and once again the Auburn Tigers have another race for the starting quarterback position. As we mentioned a few days ago, the question of who will be the signal caller in the opening game seems to be so common on The Plains, it has become a right of fall.
Every Auburn fan knows that Clint Moseley and Kiehl Frazier have been dueling for the starting role in preseason camp. Although Coach Chizik has been saying the race is still pretty much even, Moseley has been nursing a sore shoulder resulting in Frazier getting more snaps in practice.
It will be a surprise to everyone, but Clint, if Frazier doesn’t get the nod. His teammates have been raving about how much he has improved over last year and he is looking more and more like the one to lead the Tigers to a winning season in 2012.
Auburn finished 8-5 last year and played in a New Year’s Eve Bowl, but a look at the offensive stats for 2011 reveals that new Offensive Coordinator Scott Loeffler has his work cut out for him.
While the Tigers’ rushing offense was the fourth best in the SEC, the passing attack was ranked 105th in the nation. When you factor in Auburn’s No.70 ranking in scoring offense, its easy to see the Tigers have plenty of room for growth.
There hasn’t been as much excitement in the off season surrounding the hiring of Scott Loeffler as there seem to have been about the hiring of new DC Brian Van Gorder. However, Loffler has the resume to suggest he can be successful in the toughest football league in the nation.
He has been thought of as an up and coming coach for some time. Before the Auburn job he was mentioned for several OC jobs including Wisconsin, LSU, and Alabama. Like Van Gorder, he has coached in the NFL, spending the 2008 season with the Detroit Lions.
In his 14 year coaching career, he has made his reputation as a mentor of great college quarterbacks, six of whom that have gone on to have NFL careers, including Brian Griese, Tim Tebow, and the Patriot’s Tom Brady.
Along the way he has coached in 10 bowl games, coached in Michigan’s ‘97 national championship game and coached Tebow in the 2009 SEC Championship game. When Florida’s OC, Steve Addazio was hired in 2010 as the head coach at Temple, he took Loffler along with him to be the Owls Offensive Coordinator.
His one season as an OC, saw the Owls offense finish the season as the seventh best rushing offense in the nation. More importantly for Auburn, he helped Sophomore quarterback Chris Coyer have a pass efficiency of 142.8, – good enough for a ranking of 33 nationally. Coyer was also named the New Mexico Bowl’s MVP and finished the season with a 177.4 passer rating.
With a young but highly recruited O-Line, an All American Fullback (Jay Prosch), a stable full of running backs, and Emory Blake and Phillip Lutzenkirchen to lead the receiving corps – Loeffler has all the tools to make a lot of noise in the SEC West this year.
With his background, his record with QB’s, and his reputation as a stickler for details – Loeffler should have the Tigers back among the league leaders in offense.
Yes the basic tools are in place. But the question is … Can he do it? Can he put the Auburn Offense back among the league’s best?
We’ll start getting that answer September 1st when Auburn meets Clemson in the Dome.