It’s time for Auburn to claim more national championships. For years we’ve laughed at Alabama fans that drive around the state with those stupid “15” stickers on their cars. But here’s the thing: There are many across the country who actually believe Bama has that many titles.
Perception is reality.
Auburn will tackle the issue of claiming more national titles this month, with a decision expected before the start of the season. At issue is whether to claim the seasons of 1910, 1913, 1914, 1958, 1983, 1993 and 2004 as championship years.
On the surface it’s all very silly; but when you have a rival that uses it as a recruiting tool, then sometime you have to fight stupid with stupid.
By Alabama standards, these seasons easily qualify for celebration. By their measure, so would last year, considering many of their claimed championships came following bowl game losses.
Some in the Auburn family complain the move would make them no better than the morons who came up with the idea in the first place. It’s hard to argue that point. But when you have a national media that readily acknowledges the titles claimed by Alabama, you have to ask yourself, what’s to lose?
For years, the Auburn Media Guide has acknowledged those teams as champions. I wasn’t around in 1913, but until his last dying breath, my great-grandfather claimed Auburn was robbed following the 1913 undefeated season. Only the Billingsley poll had his beloved Tigers number one.
Or was it the 1914 season?
Joking aside, the Official NCAA Division I Football Records Book lists Auburn, Chicago and Harvard as champions that season. I can honestly make a case for that one. When you look at those grainy, black-and-white pictures from that season, there’s no arguing this team was tops in the land.
Years later, former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville is still bitter over the school not doing more to claim the 2004 title following USC being stripped by the NCAA a few years back because of the Reggie Bush scandal.
“What I was disappointed with is we didn’t have the media step up and say, ‘OK, there’s got to be a champion so who is it? It obviously should have been us,” Tuberville told USA Today. “Oklahoma lost. Maybe they could say it should be split because they played in the game. But Auburn went undefeated.
“If it’d been Michigan, if it had been Alabama, there would have been more of a push toward saying, hey they should be named No. 1. But Auburn, for some reason, we never got to first base on it. There was no support out of the administration.”
Auburn Athletic Director Jay Jacobs now wants to take a look.
“We want to do what’s best for Auburn, regardless of what the rest of the world thinks or says,” Jacobs said. “The things that I said about it back in January is the same I feel today. If other schools are counting championships a certain way, then we should count that same exact way.
“Those players deserve whatever accolades, whatever recognition that any reputable organization gave them, so why shouldn’t we honor them that way?” Jacobs said. “It’s not about taking it from somebody. We’re not interested in that. Who was crowned a national champion by whatever polls, that’s good. But all we’re interested in is what’s best for our current and former student-athletes as far as recognition goes.”
Nine national titles have a nice ring to it – even if it’s not completely real.
Tags: Auburn blogs, Auburn Football, auburn national titles, auburn Tigers, jay coulter, jay jacobs, Tommy Tuberville, trackem tigers