Putting a Bow on the 2016 Season
When you reflect on the tenure of Gus Malzahn, the seasons kind of run together. You really can’t tell one from the other. Athletic Director Jay Jacobs says he wants consistency for the program. I think he’s found it in Malzahn.
Since the 2013 season, Auburn has lost at least five games a year. In contrast, Alabama has lost three games over the same period. There was a time when keeping up with Alabama and Georgia mattered. Apparently, you can pull down $4 million a year, lose to both and be just fine.
Auburn enters the off-season just like the last one and the one before that… Waiting for the right quarterback to show up and save the day.
Meanwhile, tonight Alabama plays for a national title with a freshman quarterback. Let’s hope Jarrett Stidham can block and catch too. Because we haven’t seen a lot of that either down the stretch.
Give Malzahn credit. He’s selling a story that everyone seems to be buying. Stidham will save the day come this fall. It’s frightening how mediocrity has seeped into this program. For those who say the Sugar Bowl was an accomplishment, give me a break.
Before the smallest crowd in Sugar Bowl history, we watched perhaps the worst SEC team ever to play in the game, be gutted by Oklahoma in every way. I was among the stupid who spent my money going, believing Auburn would be better with everyone healthy. Shame on me.
Assuming Auburn’s leadership finds a pulse, and it should when a new president arrives later this year, Malzahn will likely face a do or die season – finally. Maybe Stidham’s arrival will lift everyone else up. Maybe our receivers will start getting open downfield and our lineman will hold blocks longer. Sounds to me a lot to ask of a 20-year-old.
Next month, Auburn will likely land another top 10 recruiting class. At no time in Auburn history has there been so much talent on campus. Yet the story rarely changes. When we look back on 2016, it will be remembered as more of the same.
But next season!
Oh, just wait until next season!