A cold day early in spring practice for Dameyune Craig (Todd Van Emst)
April 18, 2013
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN -- Dameyune Craig warned them.
"I'm going to be throwing hard this time, so get ready."
And with that, the former All-SEC quarterback and now receivers coach and co-offensive coordinator at Auburn put his players through a hot drill.
"They were supposed to be running a flat route at 6 yards, and all of the sudden they were running it at 10 yards," Craig remembered. "I said, 'Come on, guys, you're supposed to be running it at 6.' And they said, 'Coach, you're throwing it too hard.'
Craig smiled. "I had to show them I still have it."
Craig still has it. The Auburn quarterback from 1994-97 and five others will be inducted into Tiger Trail, a tradition that honors Tiger greats with plaques along the streets of Auburn, at a ceremony sponsored by the Auburn Chamber of Commerce and Auburn Athletics at 5 p.m. Friday in Auburn Arena. Tiger Trail is part of a busy Auburn weekend that features Saturday's A-Day Game in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
Craig still holds Auburn's single-season records for completions and passing yards. Now, he's in his first months as Gus Malzahn's receivers coach. Friday, he'll be recognized for his playing days. So will Jim Barfield (baseball 1963-65), Lauretta Freeman (1990-93), Jimmy Fibbe (basketball 1959-61), Jimmy Green (golf 1989-92) and Lindsay Joy Neubarth (equestrian 2000-2003).
"It's a great honor first and foremost," Craig said. "I remember when they first started Tiger Trail I used to walk downtown and I'd hope my name would be engrave in the sidewalk. When they called and told me, I was very excited about it. There are a lot of great names along the Tiger Trail."
Craig said he's barely had time to catch his breath since being hired in January.
"I was on the road recruiting the first couple of weeks, so I wasn't even in the building," he said. "When I got in the building, you had to transition from what you were used to, but it was like home. The building still smelled the same. Everything looked the same. It was amazing. It was home."
Craig knew they'd be much to do.
"It's been wonderful, but it's been a lot of work," he said. "We understand what's at stake; how much ground you have to cover in a short amount of time. We're trying to get better on and off the field, and it's a process.
"I really do enjoy the process more than anything. The process is a lot more gratifying than the end to me. At the end of the day, when you get what you worked for, I get more enjoyment out of the process."
The former Auburn star quarterback coached quarterbacks at Florida State the previous three years. He's got the wide receivers now.
"When you coach quarterbacks you get different personalities, but you get the same kid. They have to be tuned in the same way to have success. Off the field, they may be different, but when they step on the field, they have to be the same person.
"I'm not getting that with the wide receivers. I'm managing a lot of different personalities. I'm just trying to pull everybody together. I think they're enjoying it. I've been a nagging them for the last couple of weeks, and my objective is to nag them and nag them and nag them to the point where they'll say, 'You know what? I'm tired of hearing that. I'm just going to do it right.' That's been fun. I'm enjoying these kids. We're learning -- we're learning how to be accountable, we're learning how to be disciplined, learning how to do small things, and it's been fun."
Tickets for Friday's ceremony are $25. More information is available at the Auburn Chamber of Commerce at 334-887-7011. An interactive map showing the Tiger Trail route, and where each plaque is, can be found here.
The 2013 Tiger Trail recipients
Dameyune Craig Football 1994-1997
During his first two years playing with the Auburn Tigers, Dameyune Craig served as the backup quarterback to starter Patrick Nix before moving into the starting quarterback position for 1996 and 1997. Craig still holds numerous Auburn passing records, including completions (216) and passing yards in a season (3,227), as well as a single-game record for most net yards gained (445 vs. Army in 1996; 75 rush, 370 pass). During his time at Auburn, number 16 led Auburn to an 18-7 mark in 25 career starts, but he also excelled off the field, earning Academic All-SEC honors as a senior in 1997.
Jimmy Green Men's Golf 1989-1992
Lettering from 1989 to 1992, Jimmy Green left a staple on the Auburn men's golf program. Green won an Auburn record six individual titles, winning the 1988 and 1989 Alabama Intercollegiate, 1990 Tournament of Champions and 1991 Dixie Intercollegiate. Green also became the first Auburn golfer to win an NCAA Regional in 1990 and an SEC Championship in 1991. The Meridian, Miss., native led the Tigers in scoring for three seasons from 1989-1992, and ranks fifth all-time in Auburn history in career stroke average at 72.85.
Lauretta Freeman Women's Basketball 1990-1993
As a forward for Auburn, Lauretta Freeman set the school record for rebounds in a season (401) led the SEC in rebounding (13.8 rpg) and was second in scoring (18.7 ppg). During her senior year, she was a unanimous first-team All-SEC selection, a Kodak All-American and was named SEC Player of the Year.
Lindsay Neubarth Equestrian 2000-2003
Lindsay is the first equestrian to be inducted into the Tiger Trail of Auburn. She was Auburn's number one rider as a freshman and won Auburn's first regional championship. During her senior year, she was the 12th ranked hunt seat rider in the country and was high point seat rider for the Southeast Region. Also in 2003, she was named the Region High Point Rider of the Year. During her time at Auburn, the top rider was also named an SEC Academic All-American and earned Auburn's first Top Tiger Award, awarded to student-athletes who also excel in academics.
Jimmy Fibbe Men's Basketball 1959-1961
Jimmy Fibbe finished his career ranked fourth on the Tigers' all-time scoring chart with 838 points. The Frankfort, Ky., native ranks third on Auburn's single-season free throw percentage chart, making 86.5 percent in 1960-61. The 6-foot-3 forward ranks sixth on Auburn's career free throw percentage list (.802) and ninth on the field goal percentage chart (.548).
Jim Barfield Baseball 1963-1964
A third baseman, Jimmy Barfield was named an ABCA All-America in 1964 in his second and final season at Auburn. Hitting .374 in his All-American campaign, Barfield helped the Tigers to a 21-7 record and a SEC East Championship. Barfield was also the leading hitter on head coach Paul Nix's 1963 SEC Championship team, hitting .363. Auburn went 17-8, 15-3 SEC that season and played in the NCAA District 3 Regional at Gastonia, N.C. Barfield held the Auburn batting average record for over 40 years.
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