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Midweek Ramblings From The Plains

By on October 18th, 2017 in Football, News, Other Sports 28 Comments »

Will Auburn linebacker Tré Williams return from injury to play against Arkansas? ( AP photo)

Auburn fans are frustrated, and the football team is hurting after suffering a devastating loss in Baton Rouge Saturday. No doubt it was a game that everyone would like to have back. But that’s not going to happen. The best medicine for that kind of hurt is winning games.

If the Tigers are going to have a chance to get over it and still make something out of this season, it’s going to have to start this Saturday in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Gus takes the blame.

Speaking of that hurt, Coach Malzahn responded to the fans’ frustration with the LSU loss in his weekly press conference. The fifth-year coach shouldered the blame: “We’ve got great fans, and our fans are very passionate,” Malzahn said. “Our fans want to win championships, and they should. Any time you blow a 20-point lead on the road, they should be frustrated. And I’m frustrated, also. But I just want to say this—I’ve got good coaches, I’ve got good players, and any time that happens, that’s on the head coach and that’s on me. That can’t happen again. It’s not going to happen again. But I take full responsibility.”

Another player leaves the team

On Tuesday Auburn wide receiver Kyle Davis became the third Auburn player to leave the program this year. Shortly after Gus Malzahn announced the sophomore had been dismissed for breaking team rules, Davis posted on Instagram saying he wanted to “…thank coach Malzahn, Auburn football and the Auburn family for giving me the opportunity to be a part of an amazing football program and learning institution. I request that the media respect me and my family’s privacy moving forward. Auburn will always have a place in my heart.”

The dismissal shouldn’t be a surprise as Davis has been dealing with personal issues since arriving on the Plains. He did not make the trip to Baton Rouge and was one of three players suspended for the first game of the season. Davis only had seven receptions this year but was probably the team’s best deep threat. However, the Tigers should be okay with Darius Slayton averaging 22 yards per catch, Will Hastings 21 and Nate Craig-Myers 20.

Players receive national honors.

Auburn soccer forward Kristen Dodson has become the first player in Auburn history to be named twice as National Player of the Week. recognized the senior after she recorded her sixth career brace and third of the season against Alabama and her 10th career game-winning goal against No. 10 Florida.

Also on Tuesday, Auburn offensive lineman Braden Smith and cornerback Carlton Davis were both named to the second team Midseason All-America Team. It was the second  time for Smith to be recognize by the AP, and the senior was named first-team All-SEC last season. Expect to see him playing on Sundays next year.

Walking wounded.

After seven games without an off week, the Auburn football team is pretty beat up. Several players are less than 100 percent heading into this week’s road game at Arkansas.

Key players on both sides of the ball may not see action. In addition to Kamryn Pettway‘s season-long foot and leg issues, sophomore running back Kam Martin has been missing playing time due to a nagging ankle injury. Also offensive guard Mike Horton is doubtful, and coach Malzahn said yesterday that center Casey Dunn will not play.

Safety and defensive leader Tray Matthews, who went out in the first quarter of the LSU game, will most likely not be ready Saturday. Also linebacker Tré Williams is still doubtful after missing  three of the last four games with a shoulder injury.

At this point in the season, the Tigers are in desperate need of two things. One: getting healthy and two: returning to the win column.

Beat Arkansas!


  1. meathead530 says:

    Malzahn says “It’s not going to happen again” regarding the loss Saturday. I wish I could believe him. I don’t think he mentally knows what it takes to coach.

    I’ve seen this quote floating on twitter regarding his thoughts during halftime. I think Gus said it on a radio interview

    “How many points can they really score versus our defense?”

    Who in the world thinks this way?

  2. neonbets says:

    Watching Malzahn coach this team is like watching Fred Flintstone as he drives to work…It’s the same two bushes, three rocks and four trees repeated over and over and over again.

  3. Zach Taylor Zach Taylor says:

    It’s been over half a week and I still don’t know what to say. Really, I’ve kept quiet because I know if and when I said something, it would be emotional and likely regrettable. So, I didn’t.

    Gus Malzahn, however, hasn’t subscribed to this belief and everything he has said this week including the halftime and post game stuff have been enlightening to everyone from fans to talking heads.

    Gus might have kept the remainder of the fanbase until amen corner if he’d have owned the loss and been contrite.

    But he didn’t. He went the complete 180 degrees the other way, as he’s done time and time again. It’s like an obstinent teenager who thinks they can stand up to the parent and say “Yeah, I did it. So what? It’s not a big deal.”

  4. Third Generation Tiger Third Generation Tiger says:

    —I’ve got good coaches, I’ve got good players, and any time that happens, that’s on the head coach and that’s on me. That can’t happen again. It’s not going to happen again. But I take full responsibility.”

    He’s been letting in happen without correction since late 2013 soooo yeah, it’s gonna happen again. My guess is, and I’m just spit balling here, but it’s probably going to happen in each and every future game that he is allowed to coach for Auburn University.

  5. Owendavid says:

    JS said AU need to put the latest loss behind as AU have “great team”. What world is he living on? Great teams win in spit of bad HC. For sure he has same mind set at the HC. All full of sh$t. He was handed the job by HC. NEVER earned nothing. Ole Tubby said it right in Aug and again now. JS cann’t run and passing poor against quality teams…and just wait until Ga/Ala sack him even more than Clemson. Sean White NEVER had the job to loose!!! And far better proven QB than JS…ask Tubby he is correct?
    He-l yes!!! With White at QB we would be UNDEFEATED! of course that would have required getting rid of HC long time ago. Glad i live overseas and did not stay up to listen to the lousy fu×king game.

  6. Zach Taylor Zach Taylor says:

    Everyone, keep in mind that when he made the comment about “just how many points can the y score on this defense” that he is referring to a defense without it’s two or three best players.

  7. Tigerstripe Tigerstripe says:

    What kind of HC in the SEC thinks his team can “skate” through a game by only winning the first quarter?!?! I mean, did he actually tell CL to go vanilla? How do you let your team get complacent when they haven’t won in their stadium in the last 9 visits? Seems like “retribution” would’ve been a better attitude than “complacency”… LSU was probably looking for a reason to fire Orgeron at halftime…now you just gave them some shred of legitimacy.
    Clemson game = ill-prepared
    LSU game = complacent
    What’s the next excuse going to be for the next loss? So much time has been wasted this year.

  8. Owendavid says:

    Who cares!!! Dot the Is’ and cross the Ts’ all you folks don’t know a dad burn about football. What does it matter about who/what/when a comment was made. It does not make a sh$t. I for ONE are sick and tired of stupid people comments that never played the or can see the truth and way forward. HC hung out his neck with JS and new OC. Newton & Marshall won in spite of HC…be gone with this ass ho%e, good luck to find a high school that will hire him…

  9. uglyjoe says:

    As a change-of-pace, I have a basketball question. Why are we hearing so much press coverage of Wiley and his hurt foot? Seeing that he and his parents were one of the main characters in this whole FBI probe, why in the world is he still on the team? What am I missing?

    • Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

      …..My thought is that AU is going to try stonewalling the NCAA, much like Ole Miss and UNC have done. It has seemed to work. Penn State got out of a big sentence, as well, by basically denying and not cooperating.

      …..My guess is that the department is going with the “prove it” strategy.

      • uglyjoe says:

        I suppose that I am naive, but that sure doesn’t sound like a good strategy to me.

      • Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

        …..It certainly worked for UNC. They walked away from academic fraud charges, scott-free.

        • DBAU81 says:

          There’s a huge difference in our situation and NC’s: right now we are under an FBI investigation, not an NCAA investigation. The FBI, unlike the NCAA, has subpoena power, which it has already exercised. Good luck stonewalling that. Whatever the FBI finds will be handed over to the NCAA on a silver platter. Wiley and our basketball program are toast. It’s just a question of how soon it will happen.

  10. WarEagleinKC says:

    That loss was tough, no doubt. Having a chance to beat LSU in Baton Rouge for the first time since 1999, and just giving it away is a tough pill to swallow. But Auburn fans need to relax a little bit. AU fans, and the media for that matter, seem to think that AU is an elite program that should win all the time. And why should they think that? Like I just said, Auburn hasn’t won in Baton Rouge since 1999! What has Auburn done to give anyone an impression that they are an elite program?? We’re on pace to lose 20 games in 4 years, which is not elite. We haven’t had back to back 10+ win seasons since the 1980’s!!! And that includes playing 12 regular season games since 2003 (excluding 04 and 05). So, I understand being angry about the LSU game. It sucked. But should we really fire Gus over it? So we can bring in someone else to go 8-4? If you want to fire Gus bc he cant beat a crappy LSU team or bc he cant beat UGA, those are legit reasons. But if you’re looking for a coach to bring AU to national relevance every year, I don’t think he exists.

    • Owendavid says:

      Oh so simple, so you and yours see the glass half full and glad about it. What if good isn’t good enought? What, if other than you, we want exceptional? And why does AU not deserve extra ordinary/ perfection? Take your magic stick some place else, don’t knock on this door.

    • uglyjoe says:

      What’s the disclaimer on mutual fund prospectus? …. Past performance is no indication of future earnings. I was kind of following you until the last sentence. That coach does exist somewhere. Alabama has figured it out, Ohio state has figured it out. Penn State, TCU, even Clemson for crying out loud…… There is someone out there that can bring us to national relevance. The trick is to find him, which we have not been very good at in the past.

    • Zach Taylor Zach Taylor says:

      What other schools have played for 2 NCs in the last 6 years? They are far and few in between. That makes AU an elite program.

      I look at the number of 10 win seasons and see where we need to improve, not as a statement on the invalidity of being elite.

      • WarEagleinKC says:

        2010 was bc of Cam, 2013 was magic lol. Hope Im wrong, but I see AU being an 8-4 program for the long haul.

        • Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

          …..Traditionally, we have been an 8-4 program. Occasionally better, occasionally worse. In my lifetime, Auburn wins 2/3rds of it’s games overall, and close to 60 percent in the SEC. Malzahn is right there in overall records, and slightly below in the SEC.

          • WarEagleinKC says:

            My point exactly. So why fire Gus for having another 8-4 type of year? I get losing to uga, and this year’s LSU loss… those are good examples of why he might need to go. But just bc we don’t compete for NC’s every year like that other team up north, doesn’t mean we should throw him out of town. No coach can make AU a NC contender every year. It hasn’t happened yet and never will.

  11. easyedwin easyedwin says:

    what he said /\/\

  12. Jonathon Jonathon says:

    I’ve been putting this game behind me as each day passes but it’s not been easy. I appreciate Malzhan’s PR people coming to his rescue to finally apologize for the horrid loss. He said what he said in the moment and meant it. Reversing his stance now is pure PR coverage.
    We are an elite program. We should expect every aspect of our own process to be as well, week in and week out.
    Leach’s “Pathetic Front-Runners” speach not only goes for his players as he put it, but for a certain Auburn coach who was also labeled as exhibiting “obvious hubris” by a media outlet based on his play calling and in-game quotes.
    Hey Malzahn! What have you done for us lately?? PATHETIC!

  13. Acid Reign Acid Reign says:

    …..I celebrated as joyfully as anyone in 2009 and 2010, at Auburn’s offensive resurgence. The offense had been downright bad, in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Still, certain things worried me. If McCalebb and Burns were in the game together, you could immediately tell that the wildcat was coming. Run down? Eric Smith would be in the game. Passing down? Lutzenkirchen and/or Emory Blake.

    …..Tendencies were already emerging, while Auburn was winning a national championship. We saw it, because we eat, drink and sleep Auburn football obsessively. Opposing coaches sit down and review film for a few hours on game week. Still, a body of work has been built now, over the past 9 years. Defensive coaches can now home in on what Gus is doing, just by how the players line up.

    • Tigerstripe Tigerstripe says:

      True. A football genius shouldn’t be predictable.

      • sparkey sparkey says:

        He ain’t anywhere close to an offensive genius is the problem.

        • jlobailey says:

          I mean…. All he did was create the HUNH offense (literally wrote the book) and also designed the Wildcat with RunDMC and Felix Jones that would heavily influence college AND the NFL. Can we have a go at impartiality about anything? Even occasionally?

  14. easyedwin easyedwin says:

    I rarely see Auburn hurry.