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Is Woody Barrett the Forgotten Man?

By on March 7th, 2017 in Football, News 26 Comments »
auburn-quarterback-woody-barrettjpg-99c1a26f082a7a69

photo: Julie Bennett/al.com

Well, it’s spring time in Auburn, and that means it’s time for another quarterback competition. The Tigers go through this so often, it seems like it’s almost a rite of spring on the Plains.

Although many assume the nation’s number one JUCO quarterback, Jarrett Stidham, will be the starter for the Tigers in 2017, the final decision hasn’t been made yet.

Toiling almost in the shadow of the former Baylor QB is a redshirt freshman who came to Auburn with an impressive resume of his own. During his senior year of high school, Woody Barrett passed for 20 touchdowns and ran for 23 more while compiling 3,431 total yards at West Orange High in Winter Garden, Florida. It was a performance good enough to garner the 6′-2″, 235-pounder an Under-Armour All-American selection.

His high school coach said the Tigers, “Really got something special,” with Barrett. He said Woody has a cannon for an arm and had once seen him accurately throw a 70-yard pass off his back foot. When Woody signed with the Tigers, he told reporters he was coming to the Plains with expectations of earning the starting position.

And that goal was not entirely out of the realm of possibility. The No. 6 dual-threat quarterback in the nation could have gone anywhere he desired. He was recruited by most of the top programs in the country, including Alabama and Ohio State. After visits to the Plains he was convinced that Auburn was the place for him.

Yet despite all that, he became an almost-forgotten man in the 2016 quarterback race. To be fair, he arrived at Auburn the end of June and then suffered a preseason ankle sprain. Both of those speed bumps contributed to his being relegated to redshirt status. However, late in the season when a beat up Sean White was not at the top of his game and White’s back ups could not move the offense, some expected Barrett to get his chance.

It looked like the tight contest in Athens, Ga. would have been the most opportune time to insert him in a game. Auburn only needed to make a few first downs to win the game, but apparently coaches were not willing to burn his redshirt for a chance at beating the Tigers’ oldest rival.

With all the hype over Stidham’s transferring, Barrett’s chances have almost looked like a footnote. But Woody hasn’t given up on his dream to win the starting role. And by all accounts, he has worked hard in the off-season, preparing physically and mentally to run the Auburn offense. Gus Malzahn said this week he can see the determination in Woody’s eyes to compete for the job.

With Sean White nursing an injury, he started spring camp working with the number-two offense, but Malzahn has said that’s because all six quarterbacks will get a chance to prove what they can do. What Woody Barrett has to do is prove to new quarterback coach Chip Lindsey that he deserves a shot over not only Jarrett Stidham but the veteran White, senior John Franklin III, red shirt sophomore Tyler Queen and true freshman Malik Willis.

While the favorite appears to be Stidham, is the race almost over before it begins? Is Jarrett Stidham really going to be the starter for the Tigers? Not if Woody Barrett has anything to say about it.

26 Comments

  1. ausouthal says:

    One of the things I am most critical of White about is his lack of ability to extend a play in the pocket. When he gets pressure he either throws, runs up the middle, or goes down. His lack of movement in and around the pocket contributes to the beating he takes. Regretfully it appears he may be one of those that with a few hits something on his body will give way.

    Gutsy kid, but it would be hard for me as a coach, with possibly my job on the line, to name a quarterback the man if I did not think he could stay on the field. Last year he was light years ahead of Franklin and Johnson but that is not the case this year. Barrett and Stidham both could be great options.

  2. Zach Taylor Zach Taylor says:

    Watching the very limited amount of film on him from spring drills, I can say that he has the best looking arm of the group. The ball jumps from his arm. He has the best demeaner of the group.

    Again, that’s just drills in helmets, but I spotted him out of the corner of my eye the other day becuase I was just listening to the news.

    We could very well have a Jalen Hurts type coup.

    • neonbets says:

      C’mon, man.
      How much film is even available for these spring drills?
      How much of the film that is available would allow any human being to actually assess that Barrett has the best demeanor of these QBs?
      You couldn’t hear their voices…there was no special in-helmet camera that allowed you to see their facial expressions. Yet you make a definitive assessment based on body language…in pads…during spring drills from seconds–not minutes–but seconds of film. That is FBI Profiler material.

      ********
      As for Stidham, when he transfered, TET states that Stidham’s biggest challenge won’t be SEC defenses. Instead, Stidham’s biggest challenge will be winning the hearts and minds of his new teammates.’
      C’mon.

      *******
      As for Barrett…he isn’t a footnote. Many expect him to be the #2. He’s getting as much buzz–if not more–than Stidham in these spring drills. As for not burning his redshirt—Considering that Auburn picked up another young red-shirt QB after the Georgia game, it was smart not to burn Barrett’s redshirt. Now, even if he loses to Stidham for starter, Barrett is more likely to stay.

      • Zach Taylor Zach Taylor says:

        It’s just my opinion. But I loved his pocket presence and the flash of his arm and footwork.

        In addition, his teammates also say he has the best arm.

        The point I’m making is, dont be surprised when Barrett looks amazing on a-day , just like hurts.

      • AubTigerman AubTigerman says:

        Appreciate you Neon, really I do.

        But since this is the second time you have taken issue with my "hearts and minds" quote … I have to say I plead guilty to sometimes using too much hyperbole. I only meant to say in that piece that Stidham would have to win over his team especially since they respect and love Sean White as a leader.

        Justin Ferguson had a similar take in his article today over at SEC Country. He said:
        "Dropping into a new team with established relationships and chemistry can be tough, even for players with Stidham’s talent. He has to learn his team as much as his playbook in order to reach full potential in a quarterback battle … Winning the starting quarterback job will require Stidham to win the offense."

        He quotes Kerryon Johnson saying that Jarrett is, "striving for it." and is making headway. See the full article at:

        https://www.seccountry.com/auburn/auburn-football-spring-practice-jarrett-stidham-leader

  3. Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

    …..New quarterbacks coach, clean slate, incumbent injured, who knows? I’ve seen it happen before!

  4. WarSamEagle WarSamEagle says:

    It still gripes me that Barrett wasn’t giving a chance against Georgia. He could have made a difference!

  5. KoolBell KoolBell says:

    The forgotten man, in my opinion, is Tyler Queen. Queen’s resume rivals Barrett’s in every aspect.

    • zotus zotus says:

      “Forgotten?” By Malzahn? Maybe.

      I know that’s not your word, Kool … but, I get your point.

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

      P.S. FWIW, the verb that most accurately completes the following sentence, IMHO would be: “mismanaged”

      Gus Malzahn has “pick a verb” Tyler Queen’s QB career at Auburn.

      That would make it:

      1) Gus Malzahn has mismanaged Tyler Queen’s QB career at Auburn.

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

      P.P.S. It could also be argued that:

      2) Gus Malzahn has mismanaged Woody Barrett’s QB career at Auburn.

      … and, there’s plenty of evidence that:

      3) Gus Malzahn has mismanaged Sean White’s QB career at Auburn. (To the point, IMHO, of malfeasance.)

      … and, there’s plenty of evidence that:

      4) Gus Malzahn mismanaged Kiehl Frazier’s QB career at Auburn.

      … and, there’s no doubt that:

      5) Gus Malzahn mismanaged Jeremy Johnson’s QB career at Auburn.

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

      P.P.P.S. So, the beat goes on.

      “What have you been doing, Jay Jacobs, while Rome burns all around you?”

      “Working the land. Passing out $200K performance bonuses. Hoping for a fertile Spring.” replies Mr. Jacobs.

    • AubTigerman AubTigerman says:

      Good point KB.

      The shoulder surgery really hurt Queen's chances. Now he's a long shot. But who knows what the resident air-raid guy will do after he evaluates this spring and summer. After all, when he signed as a recruit, Queen was ranked as the No. 15 pro-style quarterback in the nation by the 247Sports Composite …. something that may be of interest to Chip Lindsey.

  6. audude audude says:

    Good problems to have. The cupboard is not bare on the plains!

    WDE

  7. JRoweMDN says:

    My thoughts were that Stidham steps in and wins the starting role and White is most likely to fill in as a backup to him for the playbook. I expect to see Barrett have his own playbook and design plays that will be used for mop up duty and wildcat type work. White's health is an issue and nobody truly knows if all the rumors about his shoulder being seriously injure are true and could change the way the backup is utilized.

    Hopefully our new OC will have playbooks ready for both Stidham and Woody so we are prepared to move quickly if needed. I love Sean White's grit and determination, but I believe the future is Stidham for 2 years then Barett after him.

    Willis will get his shot to prove himself and compete as well and may beat Barrett. As for Queen he could be the backup to Stidham if White truly has issues with his shoulder and we need a passer to step in for Stidham.

    As for JF3 he needs a new role that utilizes his speed on the field. Speed sweep, slot receiver, kick returns, or something other than QB. He is fast and able to contribute with his legs, but not under center.

    • Pine Mt Tiger Pine Mt Tiger says:

      Like your scenario but Stidham has 3 yrs of eligibility left if he stays the entire time. Question is, would Barrett wait that long to be able to start for one year as a 5th yr guy? He wants to play bad as his deleted tweet showed last season. If it takes 3 more yrs, I think he transfers.

      • JRoweMDN says:

        You are correct. I keep thinking Stidham is a JUCO transfer and a Junior. That does cause issues with keeping Barrett happy. I do know that Willis has great potential so assuming he redshirts we are still good if Barrett goes elsewhere. A great 2 years for Stidham could also see him gone in 2.

  8. sparkey sparkey says:

    It’s Stidham and it isn’t even close. Not sure why people are acting as if it will be anybody else. JFIII has started playing wide receiver. That’s where he should have been all along actually.

  9. uglyjoe says:

    I still predict white will be a great quarterback….at an FCS school after he transfers this summer. Stidham is the man but will be in a “battle” with Barrett till fall. I think there will be some JFIII packages, but he won’t be in the club. Queen will be like Tuberville.

    • Tiger Tiger says:

      I agree with most of this, except the bit about White transferring.

      I may be wrong, but I believe White plans to focus on his accounting degree and isn’t really envisioning an NFL future for himself. I think he competes hard for the starting job, loses to Stidham, and earns his Auburn degree while playing a backup role.

  10. AUglenn says:

    2017 depth chart:
    1. Barrett Stidham
    2. Sean White
    3. Woody Barrett
    4. Tyler Queen

  11. gary says:

    dameun craig has just gone back to fsu

  12. neonbets says:

    Regardless of who starts, here’s someone Hand is recruiting to protect him…http://www.si.com/college-football/2017/03/07/daniel-faalele-img-academy-recruiting

  13. easyedwin easyedwin says:

    1 Stidham
    2 White [leaves]
    3 Woody
    Post Spring 2017

  14. […] he shouldn’t be. It wasn’t so long ago that our own AubTigerman wrote about Barrett as The Forgotten Man and caused some real conversation among our readers. That was before practice began, and not much […]

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