It was an emotional night for the former Auburn athletes
The former quarterback and five others will be honored Friday
Get all the Details on A-Day Website
Tiger Trail Inductions Set for April 19
Coaches Rodney Garner and Dameyune Craig Return Home to Auburn
Former Auburn standout quarterback Dameyune Craig, who helped the Tigers to a 2013 SEC Championship and a BCS Championship berth last year, enters his third season as Auburn's co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach. Craig spent the three seasons prior to returning to Auburn as the quarterbacks coach and recruiting coordinator at Florida State.
In 2013, Auburn had the second biggest turnaround in college football history in NCAA records at +8.0 games. Sophomore Sammie Coates ranked third nationally with 21.48 yards per reception, 42 catches for 902 yards and seven touchdowns.
Trailing by one, sophomore Ricardo Louis' miracle 73-yard touchdown reception from Nick Marshall with 25 seconds remaining was deflected by a Bulldog defender and gave the Tigers a 43-38 victory over No. 25 Georgia. What could have been the play of the year, was supplanted a week later by Chris Davis' remarkable 109-yard missed field goal return for a touchdown with time expired in the 34-28 win over No. 1 Alabama, giving the Tigers the Western Division Championship.
Craig played quarterback at Auburn from 1994-97, where he still holds numerous Auburn passing records, including completions (216) and passing yards (3,227) in a season as well as a single-game record for most net yards gained (445 vs. Army in 1996; 75 rush, 370 pass). Craig, who led Auburn to an 18-7 mark in 25 career starts, was an exceptional student-athlete on and off the field, earning Academic All-SEC honors as a senior in 1997.
In three seasons at Florida State, Craig helped the Seminoles to a 31-10 record, including a 12-2 mark in 2012. FSU won the 2012 Atlantic Coast Conference championship and defeated Northern Illinois in the Discover Orange Bowl.
Charged with coordinating FSU's recruiting efforts, Craig's time in that role helped produced the No. 1 and No. 2 recruiting classes in 2011-12 and recruited 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston to the Seminoles. Craig was recognized as the 2012 Scout/FoxSportsNet ACC Recruiter of the Year as well as the Rivals.com ACC Recruiter of the Year. He was named one of the top 25 recruiters in the country by Rivals and one of the top 50 recruiters by 247Sports.
In addition to his recruiting duties, Craig served as quarterbacks coach, where he helped develop E.J. Manuel and Christian Ponder. In passing efficiency, Ponder ranked third in the ACC and 44th nationally (135.7 passing efficiency) in 2010. Ponder and Manuel combined to throw for 2,905 yards while Ponder completed 61.5 percent of his passes and Manuel completed 69.9 percent of his passes. Ponder was a first-round pick of the Minnesota Vikings in the 2011 NFL Draft.
Manuel, who was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft, finished his FSU career as the school career completion percentage leader (66.9 percent) while ranking in the school's top five all-time in passing yards and total offense. In 2012, Manuel threw for 3,392 yards and 23 touchdowns while completion 68 percent of his passes, while helping FSU set a school single-season record for total offense (6,591).
Craig came to Florida State after a two-year run at South Alabama, where he directed the wide receivers for head coach Joey Jones. Craig was Jones' first hire when he was charged with starting the Jaguars' football program, which played its first season in 2009 and is in the process of becoming a Football Championship Subdivision program.
At South Alabama, Craig was instrumental in implementing a run-based, spread offense that put up prolific numbers during its seven-game inaugural season in 2009. The Jaguars (7-0) averaged 45.9 points and 439 yards of total offense in 2009.
The Pritchard, Ala., native began his collegiate coaching career as an offensive graduate assistant at LSU in 2004 and worked as a special teams assistant with the Miami Dolphins in 2005. Craig returned to the college ranks in 2006 and helped Tuskegee to a two-year record of 22-2.
As the Golden Tigers' quarterbacks coach he helped the program win a pair of SIAC titles and defeat Virginia Union in the Pioneer Bowl X to cap a 12-0 season in 2007 by winning the Black College National Championship. Craig began his coaching career at his high school alma mater, Blount, near Mobile, Ala., where he was an assistant coach in 2003.
He signed as a free agent quarterback with the NFL's Carolina Panthers and appeared in six games over a four-year stretch. Craig gained his greatest acclaim on the field as a pro with the Scottish Claymores in NFL Europe, where he passed for a single-game league record 611 yards against Frankfort and matched another league mark with five touchdown passes in a game. He finished his professional playing career in 2002 with Indiana of the Arena Football League.
Craig and his wife, Neke, have two sons, Devin Chanse and Drake Christian.