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Season Opening Week Grab-Bag

By on August 28th, 2012 in Uncategorized 9 Comments »

By War Eagle Atlanta /​ on August 28, 2012

I don’t know about you, but Auburn’s long awaited meeting in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game with Clemson seems very anti-climactic. First, I’m none too pleased to share the Chicken spotlight with​ North Carolina State and Tennessee actually opening up the weekend in Atlanta Friday night. We finally get into this game four years later and we’re preempted by these guys? Rumor has it that the Atlanta Sports Council originally made an extra game available during the scheduling in 2010 because of a possibility of also landing an Alabama and Miami rematch of their 1993 Sugar Bowl game, but it didn’t materialize.

Strange that game didn’t happen–it must have been Miami’s fault considering that Alabama stepped up by being the first two SEC teams in this Kickoff match, destroying Clemson, another repeat offender, in 2008 and then by downing Virginia Tech in 2009. Looks like the future schedule of games in Atlanta has the Tide penciled in a few more times. Besides, they get to take a quick breather from Atlanta this season by packing their road show to Jerry World and have a Top 10 matchup in Dallas this weekend with Michigan coming in for the Cowboys Classic. How’s that for stealing a little of our thunder as well?

I think there could be a serious risk of preseason virtual bowl game ​fatigue if they keep up the double-scheduling in Atlanta and if competitiors continue to spring up. This year should be the bellweather. With the end of year Chick-fil-A Bowl still pairing SEC and ACC teams, I understand the Kickoff perhaps wanting to up the rankings of the matched teams and continue to build hype for the contest.

Many think that Atlanta is out of the running for the time being for the bidding of the new bowl game being proposed in 2015 for the champs of the SEC and the Big 12, and that may be true, but the race is long and the prohibitive favorites New Orleans and Dallas may tire of the game once they land it. The prime reason would be that for at least the SEC, their champion and/or their next best team might have already qualified for the new playoff and be unavailable. Would the new bowl still have the drawing power to bring bride’s maids fans as far west as Dallas? Only time would tell.

My thoughts for the continued success of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game? Spread the participants around. It probably doesn’t help variety that Auburn starts the 2012 season in a dome where they ended the 2011​ one. Maybe Clemson would have been made to wait a while longer since they got destroyed their last outing in this contest. Oh, you thought I was mentioning the Orange Bowl. No, but speaking of orange bowls, you can bet you’ll see your fair share of that color on Saturday.


  1. Bill Sewell says:

    I will have a hard time picking a team in this one. Almost impossible to pull for the Vols and NC State is ranked right behind us in several polls. A big win by them and they could jump us easily. A TN win somehow just does not taste right. I guess, if forced, I will go with the SEC.

  2. Tiger on the Mountain says:

    Why does the Clemson Tiger have crazy eyes?? Don’t they scare the kids?

    I was really looking forward to this opener, but the loss of our starting center has me feeling a bit queasy. Can Khiel just snap the ball to himself???

  3. AubTigerman says:

    I’m probably in the minority but I don’t like opening against tough competition, give me some cupcakes first so the team can get all the kinks worked out.

    That being said, I agree that they should "spread the participants around." Good post WEA.

  4. Acid Reign says:

    …..Historically, opening with big-name opponents hasn’t worked out well for us. Miami in 1984. We actually beat Virginia in Charlottesville in 1997, but they were a rebuilding team. We’ve taken it on the chin from Southern Cal twice, and Georgia Tech at home. In the Chizik era, we’ve even struggled with non-AQ teams.

    …..Derek Dooley’s Louisiana Tech team was tough on us in 2009. That was a tight 13-10 game in the 3rd quarter, till Todd and Zachary hooked up on that long bomb. We struggled mightily with Arkansas State’s Hugh Freeze offense in 2010. Frankly, Utah State flat-out beat our _sses, and we just stole that game at the end.

    • sparkey chris says:

      I remember vividly watching that Arkansas State game. I am glad I was wrong because I thought there was no way a team that struggled that much with Arkansas State’s offense could ever win a national championship. Offense can in fact win championships the same way defense can.

      If Auburn struggles against non-AQ teams for their opener, eventually they’ll lose one and that will end the season right there.

      At least this way, even if Auburn gets really beaten it’s a decent opponent in Clemson. Honestly, I don’t see Auburn winning Saturday. I had our school winning until the Dismukes situation. That sealed the deal for me there. I don’t trust somebody who lacks any starting experience at center coming in for the first time at the Georgia Dome against a quality opponent like Clemson. I’ve already gone ahead and put an "L" on it.

  5. WarEagle86 says:

    Good write up, WEA. Atlanta is just trying to make themselves the biggest piece of pie possible. Quality is a secondary concern.

  6. Todd Eubanks says:

    And Sparkey predicts a loss…..wamp waaamp waaaaah….

    C’mon Eeyore….I mean Sparkey, Reese Dismukes is a big loss to the OL that’s for sure but I’m not so sure that he’s gonna cost us the win…..Tunde is a very intelligent young man and he already has some amount of chemistry established with Frazier….I think you’re going to be pleasantly surprised. That is all…..get back to your Mayan calendar doomsday prophesies.