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There Will Never Be Another Team Like the 2013 Auburn Tigers

By on January 8th, 2014 in Featured Article, Football 19 Comments »
9587049- Auburn Team at Rose bowl

                                                                                   (photo:Lauren Barnard/Auburn Media Relations)
“We were just on the brink of making it one of those magical seasons,” Auburn Coach Gus Malzahn said after his Auburn Tigers lost the final BCS National Championship Game to Florida State 34-31. It was a tough and disheartening ending to what had seemed like a dream season. Yet never before has the Auburn family been more proud of an Auburn Football Team.

The Tigers finish the season ranked No. 2 in the country in both the AP and Coaches poll. However, that was not much consolation for a bunch of young men who traveled so far in their 2013 comeback season. Winless in conference play in 2012, Auburn started out being picked to finish near the bottom of the South Eastern Conference. Instead the Tigers won the SEC and came within 13 seconds of being crowned national champions.

What they and their coaches have accomplished in such a short time is nothing less than miraculous. Yes, dare I say magical. They captured the nation’s imagination, gave their fans hope, and restored Auburn to national prominence.

Along the way they beat their two biggest rivals in two of the all-time greatest games in the history of the sport, played in what many have labeled as one of the best BCS National Championship games, had one of the best seasons ever for the Auburn program, and completed one of the greatest turnarounds in college football history.

I never thought that a team could steal my heart from my favorite team – the1963 Tigers led by Jimmy Sidle and Tucker Frederickson. Not the ’72 Amazins, not the great Pat Dye teams of the 80’s, not the undefeated teams of ’93 and 2004, not even the 2010 National Champions could do that. But this team has done it. And not only for me but I suspect for thousands of other Auburn fans as well.

Still many of the players expressed regrets after Monday night’s game for letting the Auburn Family down. Tre Mason in particular, apologized to the fans on Twitter for not winning the National Championship. Tre said, “We owed it to them after last season.”

No Tre you didn’t owe us anything. You gave us much more than a crystal ball. You gave us hope, you gave us treasured memories, you gave us an example of what people can do when they follow the Auburn Creed. Yes you showed us what it really means to “believe in work, hard work. To believe in a sound mind, in a sound body, in a spirit that is not afraid, and in clean sports that develop these qualities.”

Not only did Tre and his teammates set that example but they also are the champions of the toughest football conference in the nation.

They have set the bar high for future Auburn teams. Just like “Bo over the top, Punt Bama Punt” and Nix to Sanders,” this team’s heroics will be talked about for generations. Heroics like Tre Mason’s 304 yards against Missouri in the league championship game, Ricardo Louis’ “Prayer in Jordan-Hare”catch against Georgia, and Chris Davis “Kick Six” field goal return to beat No.1 Alabama. Those plays along with Rod Bramblett’s calls of those exhilarating moments … will live on forever in Auburn lore.

This team came from the very bottom to scale to the pinnacle of College football’s greatest heights. I suspect that much like the 1983 team which narrowly missed winning a national championship, this bunch has laid a foundation that will produce dividends for years to come. When the Tigers win future championships (and they will) it will be in large part due to the bar set by the 2013 Auburn Tigers.

Auburn is a football rich tradition school. In fact the Tigers are the13th winn-ingest program in Division 1 history (ninth in the past 50 years), the winner of two national championships and 12 Conference Championships (eight SEC). They’ve won more SEC Championships (3) in the last decade than any other school, and had 14 undefeated seasons including three in the last 20 years – again more than any other SEC school.
So there will be other great Auburn teams. History proves that, but …

There will never be another team like the 2013 Tigers.

19 Comments

  1. AubieCE AubieCE says:

    You are so right Carl, erm AubTigerman,

    It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog…
    Great leadership from the upperclassmen and a lot of heart
    The future of the Tigers is bright, can’t wait for next August and the 2014 Tigers !

  2. domaucan1 domaucan1 says:

    In 2014, AS ALWAYS, IT IS ESPECIALLY GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER !!!

    WAR EAGLE !!!

    GO BIG BLUE !!!

    WE LOVE ALL OF YOU WONDERFUL AUBURN TIGERS !!!

    WE ARE BACK!!!

    THANKS FOR A WONDERFUL SEASON AND FOR THE HOPE OF MANY MORE!!!

  3. CapnVegetto says:

    What you are seeing now is the fundamental difference between us and the Updykes.

    No death threats.

    No screaming about failure.

    No name calling, crying, indian poisoning, etc.

    Just extreme pride in one hell of a team. Win or lose, those guys played their a$$es off and made everybody proud. I KNOW they were better than Florida State. They just didn’t play a better game. But after this year, if you aren’t proud of the team, even after Monday, then something is wrong with you.

    Good job guys. We love you and can’t be prouder.

  4. Third Generation Tiger Third Generation Tiger says:

    I absolutely love this team and our coaching staff. Auburn is indeed back and in better shape than ever before. Gus Malzahn brings nothing but positive vibes to Auburn.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2014/01/07/bcs-championship-auburn-tigers-behind-the-scenes/4359835/

  5. MyAuburn MyAuburn says:

    Be sure to read the open letter from Nosa Egua to the Auburn Family posted below this story. He said it superbly and I bet every other member of the team feels the same. This team is truly special.

    I don’t know if Nosa reads this blog but I for one feel the same way and thank you Nosa, you are definitely an Auburn man.

  6. gonecoastal says:

    At the start of the season, I just felt like we’d do better than last year’s horrible 3-9. As the season went on, I felt like we could stand in there and play with any team, and hold our heads high.

    Then we beat some very good teams, we won some bragging rights AND the SEC Championship, with the chance to win it all.

    We came within a hair’s breadth of taking it all, and I couldn’t be prouder of my Auburn Tigers.

    Congrats to FSU, War Damn Eagle, and we will see you next year!

  7. Tigerstripe Tigerstripe says:

    Not depressed just:
    SAD for the guys because they worked so hard and played so hard for 60 minutes – all the way through…
    FRUSTRATED at one stupid fake punt. Easily a 14 point turnaround and would have possibly put the game away in the 2nd qtr. ERRRRRRR!!!!!!!
    PROUD to be a Tiger – the best university, athletic program and fan base in the country.

    I take that back, I am depressed that the football season is over.

  8. War_Eagle_2010 War_Eagle_2010 says:

    2013 will always be remebered as one of the best AU teams ever. I’m proud of them. I was down after the game, but the sun came up again and we have another year to look forward to.

    Can’t wait till we dig into recruiting and spring practice, football is fun, and Auburn will be back next year and I’m sure we will get some awesome performances from them. War Eagle!

  9. GreenvilleAUfan GreenvilleAUfan says:

    This team will always be special. Like you ATM, they have become my favorite. Can’t hardly wait to see what the Tigers will do off their foundation next season. Good read.

  10. HamiltonAUfan HamiltonAUfan says:

    NO, there will not be another team like 2013 tigers. And I think, we will be good next year like we were this year…………GO TIGERS !

  11. Eagle1 says:

    To all of the Auburn football players and coaches,

    Thank you so very much for this season! I have never more proud of any team! I always try to believe that everything happens for the best if you take advantage of it. The problems last year set the opportunity for this year’s amazing success and you took advantage of it and made it happen.

    This years’ success has set the foundation for something special in the next few years for Auburn football. I believe that those of you that will be back will take advantage of it and just like this year it will be amazing!
    Thanks Again!
    War Eagle!
    Eagle1

  12. sparkey sparkey says:

    I am incredibly proud of this team. There will never be another 2013 team and they are my new favorite Auburn team just a notch above the ’93 crew of kids with huge hearts. We have so much in place for 2014 there is no excuse for us not to be better than we were.

    After that, I can’t give any gum drops and rainbows. We still lost. I love this team and they played their asses off against FSU. That said, we lost and I ain’t smiling after losing. I’m just not moping either. War Eagle. We have everything we need to make a run of dominance just like Alabama did for these past few years. Let’s see it happen! Sparkey Out!

  13. safAU85 safAU85 says:

    No doubt these Tigers have secured their place in Auburn Football history as one of the most determined, most improved and most loved teams ever! They truly exemplify the AU creed!

    As an Auburn fan since the late 1960’s, I have seen some great teams, incredible football games and outstanding talent but NOTHING will top what these current Tigers have accomplished. They have restored Auburn Football to national prominence and pride to the AU Family. I wish I could thank each one personally!

    It pains me that they feel the need to apologize for the outcome of the NCG. No need! They played their tails off and that’s all we can ask. War Eagle!!!

  14. Col.Angus Col.Angus says:

    Boy I hope there is never another team like 2013! Cause I sure don’t want to go through a year like 2012 again!

    Its unfathomable…..UNFATHOMABLE…that the majority of the team from last year returned and delivered this dream season to us! As much as I enjoyed 2010, I never was more thrilled than I was this year and I don’t think I will ever be as impressed by the heart of players like Jay Prosch and Tre Mason. Both of which were still giving 100% last year and then totally dominated this year. It sure would thrill me if somehow the Falcons could land those two guys……and they sure could use them.

    As for the game, yes we should have won. WE HAD THEM and we didn’t do the little things….the things we have done all year….that is what made the difference. We missed an easy field goal, we fell asleep on the fake punt, we didn’t try to drive for a field goal at the end of the 2nd, we didn’t continue to grind their line in the 3rd qtr….going sideways instead of North and South (LISTEN TO BO!! BO KNOWS!!). It was a great game, but we should have won that game easily. In a championship game, the difference often comes down to are YOU going to make the play or are you going to HOPE that the other guy doesn’t? Well, we didn’t bring the fight to FSU in the second half until it was too late and it cost us. Hopefully Gus will get another chance to NOT make that mistake again.

    • sparkey sparkey says:

      Finally, somebody else who saw it for what it was. Gus definitely made some mistakes in that game. Look, I’m not taking anything away from him and I want him here for a long, long time. That said, Gus really did not do a good job for this game. When I knew we were in trouble was when we didn’t try to go down the field at the end of the half. At that point, it was clear Gus was not himself under the spotlight. He had a big lead and he tried to sit on it.

      One thing that will always be a problem for the HUNH in a championship game, there are so many TV timeouts the HUNH cannot really get rolling the same way as it can during the regular season even if it’s a nationally televised game. I really thought the constant stream of timeouts not only took our offense out of sync, but it also took Gus out of his realm as well. Gus is one of the best coaches in college. I think he will guide us there again.

      The thing about this season is that everybody looked at us like a fluke. We’re still not going to be the hunted. People still just see us as a great story but not necessarily a great team. So, we’re going to have doubters all season in 2014 and that will help fuel us once again. Only Auburn could lose the national championship game by three points and people still not look at them as if they’re going to win every game the next season around with nearly their whole team back for it.

    • tigertracker says:

      Unfathomable = Loeffler calling plays ever again…anywhere. How many jet sweeps to the short side have y’all counted this year. Bet you can do it on your fingers and maybe your toes too.

      I’m currently trying to control my inner Dennis Green, cuz we let them off the hook. I told several noles before the game that we were going to give Jamie’s the worst b’day spanking he’d ever had. Problem is we stopped spanking him with a minute to go, tho gabe wright came oh so close on the last FSU pass.

      One down side of booming kick offs is not really having to cover them and getting out of practice. There were so many what ifs for both sides and the game itself was phenomenal even for fans of neither school. The only armchair coaching I will do is to say this. Is a ~5 carry Corey grant a better option on our last gasp than a 36 carry tre mason? The design was beautiful, but I just didn’t see mason going 85 yards or whatever it was on that last play even with blocking.

      That’s probably the only game all year we haven’t owned the 4th quarter, but I will give some cred to FSU. We cracked the door and they kicked it in like a champion should and now we all sound like others who were saying the best team doesn’t always win…. We should’ve nailed it shut in the 3rd. At least we didn’t have to hear the war chant ALL game! That’s right behind rocky top for me! War eagle!

  15. win4au says:

    Davis should have downed that last kick (but I understand why he didn’t) and that would gotten us a little closer to make a couple of plays for field goal postion. 13 seconds is plenty of time to throw a couple of quick slants. Who knows maybe one of them might have broken for 40-50 yards. Anyway, at least it might have given Parkey a chance to try one. Although it did not seem that Parkey was himself in this game. He missed a fairly easy 30(+-) FG attempt and only nailed 2 touchbacks out of 6 kick offs. Maybe something was going on with him. Oh well, enough shoulda, coulda, woulda’s.

    I am proud of everything this team has accomplished. And most importantly, WE BEAT BAMA!! And we are THE 2013 SEC CHAMPS!! Enough said PERIOD
    I can’t wait until next season. WDE

  16. Pine Mt Tiger Pine Mt Tiger says:

    These Tigers have set themselves apart. Never ever will their be a team like 2013!