arrow-circle arrow-long-stroke arrow-stroke arrow-thick arrow-thin arrow-triangle icon 2 baseballCreated with Sketch. basketball calendar category check-circle check-square check comment facebook-circle facebook-icon facebook-rounded facebook-square facebook-stroke football instagram-circle instagram-icon instagram-square long-arrow-right rss-circle rss-rounded rss-square rss-stroke rss twitter-circle twitter-icon twitter-rounded twitter-square twitter-stroke user-group user

I Came To Auburn To Win It All

By on June 27th, 2018 in Football, News 10 Comments »

(photo: John Reed/USA TODAY Sports)

When quarterback Jarrett Stidham arrived in Auburn in 2017 he had only played in four college games, and that was two years before he set foot on the Plains. He naturally had some rust to work through after the two-year layoff. And under the tutelage of new offensive coordinator, Chip Lindsey, he responded by getting better almost every outing.

So much so that by the end of the season the redshirt sophomore made several All-SEC teams and finished with 3,158 yards and 18 touchdowns with six interceptions. In addition he had the best completion percentage ranking in the SEC (66.5). What’s more, he did it while nursing a shoulder injury the last part of the season. Graduating in May, he could have entered the NFL Draft but opted instead to wear the Orange and Blue for another year.

He said back in 2017 he had come to Auburn to try and help win a championship. And the Tigers came oh so close, beating their two biggest rivals before falling to Georgia in the SEC Championship game and narrowly missing inclusion in the College Football Playoff. 

It was a bitter pill to swallow for the signal caller. Stidham said last week it left him wanting, “To come back and try to finish what I started.” However, that’s a particularly difficult goal to reach for any team, most especially one that plays in the SEC West. It will be even more challenging for a team that has to play both Alabama and Georgia in away games at the end of the season.

But Jarrett Stidham is not afraid of challenges. That’s one reason he chose to play at Auburn. He has the single-eyed focus that all great quarterbacks have. The same fearless decision-making ability that causes him to take chances with the ball and press the action in a game is the same confidence he displays off the field. It’s not cockiness, it’s confidence. The kind of confidence that players can follow. That’s what it will take to reach the next level.

Stidham exudes confidence, and that can be contagious to a team. He said last week, “I came to Auburn to win it all.” Make no mistake, that’s what he plans to do.

A decision made by Coach Malzahn in the off season may help him reach that goal. For the first time under Gus, a quarterback will be given the authority to check out of plays and audible into new ones if he sees better calls against a defense. That could be a big deal. Had Jarrett had that freedom in 2017, the Tigers may have had a couple of more wins … I’m thinking Clemson and LSU here, folks.

At any rate, there’s a lot of optimism brewing around the athletic offices this summer, and for good reason. For one thing, Stidham’s stable of quality receivers could possibly include the return of Eli Stove and Will Hastings from injuries.

And then there’s the fact that this year will mark the first time in program history for a 3,000-yard passer to return for another year. No one has ever done that. Not Pat Sullivan, not Stan White, not Cam Newton! So maybe, just maybe we’ll get to see Jarrett’s dream to win it all come true. I can hardly wait for the journey to begin.

War Eagle!

10 Comments

  1. jbellison56 says:

    Good read this morning ATM. I'm excited to go nto a football season for the first time in a long time with a good veteran quarterback.

  2. Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

    ……A few more “hot” routes and checks, and Stidham could really be on his way. This offensive brain trust MUST come up with ways to lower the number of hits Stidham takes. That starts with more fundamentally sound protection, as well.

  3. AUglenn says:

    I hope Stidham has the kind of year that lands him at the Hiseman ceremony in New York City.

  4. audude audude says:

    For me, the question is really only how well will the O-line play? As we have seen Stidham can make the throws. Now given the option to change at the line, if the line can give him enough time then the skies the limit. I agree with Acid, if the offensive brain trust can mix the plays to keep the defense away from Stidham until they can gel then we’ll have something special.
    Also, I do k**e the fact that we have such quality depth at QB should something happen. They’d better prepare as if they are 1 snap away.

    WDE

  5. meathead530 says:

    Auburn has the talent. It’s the head coach that worries me.

  6. BirminghamEagle says:

    There’s always optmism in the summer but the fact that AU has a proven veteran returning with good receivers and Chip Lindsey calling the plays just adds to the anticipation. But just like others have said, the O-Line has got to protect. My bigest concern right now is who will be the bell cow at running back? That too will go a long way in helping the pasing game.

  7. sparkey sparkey says:

    If he wants to win a national championship at Auburn, he will have to come back in 2019 I am afraid. For the record, I hate that, but us besting both Bama and UGA on the road? That is asking more of the Auburn football program than anybody else has to do in college football. We have got to do something about the way our schedule is if we are to win the SEC in an even year.

Post A Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.