Monday Musings From The Plains
Coach Mickey Dean is taking his second Auburn team to the NCAA Tournament. (photo: Cat Wofford/Auburn Athletics)
For the sixth consecutive year the Auburn softball team is headed to the NCAA Tournament. The women learned their destination in Sunday night’s selection show.
The trip will mark the second time Auburn has played an NCAA Regional in Tucson, last appearing there in 2006. The Tigers will be the No. 2 seed in a region that features one of the true blueblood programs in host Arizona. No. 2 Auburn (37–19, 10–14 SEC) will face No. 3 Colorado State, Friday, 8:00 p.m. on ESPN.
Auburn baseball lost an important series over the weekend against No. 7 Georgia. After splitting the first two games the Tigers fought back from a 7–2 deficit in game three to tie it up at 7 all before Cam Shepherd hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning to give the Bulldogs a 10–8 win. Auburn is now 30–21 overall and 13–14 in SEC play.
The Tigers play UNA at home on Tuesday before heading to LSU to play what may be their most important series of the year. The outcome could determine their chances at a postseason berth.
Since arriving on campus, Auburn Athletics Director Allen Greene has been working to generate support for a new football facility. He told Auburn Undercover last week, “We’re in a really good spot with what we’ve been asked to do from a fundraising perspective.” Preliminary estimates on the cost for such a project start at $60 million. If he’s successful, it would be a huge plus for Greene as well as for Auburn football.
The No. 11 Auburn men’s golf team is playing today in its 10th NCAA Regional in 10 seasons under head coach Nick Clinard. The Tigers are playing in the Louisville Regional at University of Louisville Golf Club through Wednesday.
Auburn is one of only four programs to move on to the NCAA Championship each of the past seven seasons, and hopefully the Tigers will advance toward a chance to play for a national title.
Finally allow me to deviate a bit from Auburn sports. A wrong has been righted in Athens, Ga. Fifteen years ago, then, UGA President Michael Adams got in a dispute over Athletic Director Vince Dooley’s retirement date. Dooley wanted six more months, and Adams dug his heels in and basically said an emphatic, “No way, not on my watch.”
I never could understand why he would not want to honor the coach that gave Georgia more championships that any other in history. He then went further by torpedoing alumni proposals to rename the stadium Sanford-Dooley Stadium. Instead he allowed a small garden on campus to carry the legendary coach’s name.
Now we’ve learned the present president, Jere Morehead, has announced a proposal to name the football field at Sanford Stadium for Coach Dooley.
Why am I writing about this on an Auburn blog? Because one, it is the right move by the new president and two, Vince Dooley is somewhat of a legend at Auburn, too. He earned two degrees at Auburn, played quarterback on the Plains, and was an assistant football coach under Shug Jordan before taking the job in Athens.
I’m just glad the honor is coming while Vince (at 86) is still around to enjoy it. Congratulations, coach, for a well deserved honor!
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