He is an emotional high energy player and since his arrival at Auburn, most Tiger fans have pulled hard for him to become a star linebacker. After all, few defensive players have arrived on campus with greater expectations than Eltoro Freeman.
Nicknamed “The Bull” by his fans, he was an All-State Linebacker at Alec City’s Benjamin Russell High School where he made 140 tackles and recorded 10 sacks his senior year. Rivals.com had him rated as a four star recruit, the No. 22 outside linebackerin the nation, and the No. 8 overall recruit in Alabama.
After signing with Auburn in 2007, he enrolled at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College where he became a JUCO All American and helped the Bulldogs go undefeated; winning their first National Championship in 23 years.
His career at Auburn however, has been an up and down one. While the senior has had great games during his tenure, he has not been able to develop into a starring role. For whatever reason, he hasn’t been able to put together that breakout year – that is until the last half of this season.
He took over the Middle Line Backer position in the Arkansas game when starter Jake Holland went down with an injury. And with that chance Eltoro has really turned it on, playing like the raging bull everyone expected when he arrived on campus from Mississippi Gulf CC in 2009.
Before the Arkansas game he had eight tackles. Since taking over the Middle Line Backer position, he has become one of the team’s leading tacklers amassing 50 tackles including 30 solo, eight for a loss, two fumble recoveries, and three sacks.
One of the defensive hero’s of last year’s Iron Bowl, Freeman had his best game of the year in Tuscaloosa. He finished with nine tackles including two tackles for a loss and a sack in Auburn’s 28-27 historic Iron Bowl victory. His emotional response after the game became a You Tube sensation.
That emotion channeled in the right direction can help the rest of the team play up a notch. Auburn Defensive Tackle, Jeff Whitaker said Freeman’s enthusiasm for the game is contagious. “He’s a high-energy, high-motor, very-vocal guy. When you see him out there doing his thing, running across and making unbelievable tackles and causing fumbles… it lifts everybody.”
If Auburn is going to have any chance against Alabama Saturday, the defense will have to play at a “lifted’ – elevated level. And Eltoro will have to not only bring his contagious enthusiasm but he’ll have to bring his best game.
With Safety T-Sharvin Bell out for the season the young Tigers not only need Eltoro’s energy but his senior leadership as well. In addition Auburn has to fill up the gaps and slow down the Tide’s running game. That’s where “The Bull” can be the most effective in giving Auburn a chance against the No. 2 Tide.
War Eagle – Beat Bama!