A Day to Celebrate

By Posted on: April 21st, 2014 in Football 4 Comments »
Photo by Julie Bennett/al.com

Photo by Julie Bennett/al.com

You’ve got to give a lot of credit to Auburn officials. They know how to throw a party. Arriving on campus Saturday morning for the annual A-Day game, it became apparent immediately that the day was part celebration and part football.

The actual game was enough to keep the casual fan’s attention through halftime, but the real action was during timeouts and halftime. It would be hard to top the star power on-hand to help celebrate Auburn’s 2013 SEC Championship and look ahead to a new season.

Bo Jackson. Ken Griffey Jr. Picabo Street. Bruce Pearl. Carnell Williams. Ronnie Brown. Zeke Smith. Tre Mason. Chris Davis. Tommy Tuberville. The list goes on forever. It made for an unforgettable day on the Plains of Auburn.

We’ve all watched Chris Davis make that run a million times now, but it was extra special watching it on the Jumbotron with 70,000 cheering Auburn fans. Kudos to Jay Jacobs and his staff for making Saturday special…

It’s real easy to take Bo Jackson for granted. He’s always around the program, supporting it anyway he can. But you know, it would be just as easy for him to stay tucked away in Chicago.

There are so many stars who never return to their alma mater once their playing days end. To continue to give back is a blessing for all of us. His Bo Bikes Bama charity is huge now, but he gives back in other ways, like sending all three of his kids to school at Auburn.

Bo’s becoming every bit as special off the field as he was on it…

Like we talked last week, it’s hard to get a read on a team by watching its spring game. Auburn is no different. But you had to be impressed with the running of Corey Grant and Cameron Artis-Payne.

The same goes for newcomer D’haquille Williams. Sure he was playing against defensive backs that will see spot duty this fall, but it doesn’t take a Philadelphia lawyer to figure out this kid can catch a football.

“He is a playmaker, there is no doubt,” Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said.

Williams finished the afternoon with five catches for 88 yards and a touchdown.

“That was just a little sneak preview,” receiver Quan Bray said.

For the first time since the Tuberville era, Auburn may finally have a second and third option at wide receiver. Throw in Sammy Coates and an improving Ricardo Louis, and Auburn’s offense has a chance to be better than last season…

While Nick Marshall looked even better, Jeremy Johnson still looks to be a work in progress. With Marshall carrying the ball so much, the idea of Johnson being one play away from starting, has to worry coaches.

While the raw talent is obviously there, Johnson looked out of sync at times. Then again, he was working with the second team offense, so maybe he should be given a pass (no pun intended)…

I thought it was interesting that ESPN was on campus handing out cards urging fans to call their cable and satellite providers about the upcoming launch of the SEC Network. So far, only Dish Network has signed on nationally to carry the station.

With Auburn hosting Arkansas in the network’s televised opener, time is of the essence for both ESPN and Auburn fans. Look for things to get worked out in the final days leading up to the broadcast. If not, get ready for the outcry.

Until next time…

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
  1. Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

    …..ESPN and the SEC better get this worked out! If they think they can force every TV viewer they’ve built up over the years to switch to Dish, they’d better think again! Me, I’d go back to the 1970s and listen to every game on the radio before I chop down my trees to get reception on Dish.

  2. ATL_AU_FAN says:

    AT&T U-Verse already has the SEC Network but I know, at least in the ATL area, that Comcast and Charter currently have no deal in place.

  3. donnajoandmike84 says:

    I live out in the country and way off the road so satellite is my only option. I don’t want to switch from directv to dish, but I will. Contract or no contract.

  4. wde1988 wde1988 says:

    Funny story: My family were guest to some friends of ours and watched A-Day in the executive suite. If you have ever been there it’s got glass walls where you sit so you can see folks to the left and right of you. Needless to say we got to see some Auburn notables – namely Pat Dye. It was truly a great day.

    After the game was over it started to rain. We visited with our host some more made sure we thanked them and made sure we cleaned up after such a wonderful game. As we walked out the door headed to the elevators and lobby area we literally bumped into – guess who – Jay Jacobs. I was very polite. Introduced my wife and brother and my children. I told JJ that he did a great job hiring Bruce Pearl. For the first time in a while I felt like AU was heading where we needed to be. I was very optomistic.

    As we left the stadium my son… the same one who hates bama with a passion… wonder where he gets that from… comes up to me and says… “Dad, I heard what you said to Mr. Jacobs. You know… you were saying nice things about him a few years ago.”

    I thought my jaw was going to hit the ground. My ears were red… I looked to my wife for support…. and she smiled. “Boy ain’t lying Dad!” I began to sputter… but I had nothing. GUILTY!

    I couldn’t help but laugh.

    I pleaded my case… saying it was for the love of Auburn that I vilified JJ. And yes, I would stand by my opinion since it was so aptly put on me in retrospect. I swore I would do it again… and truly would. Why? Because I love Auburn that’s why!

    It’s an amazing thing to get humbled by your kid! Pay attention Dad’s! Your kids watch everything you do.

    Pretty funny too!

    WDE