Jan. 7, 2014
Auburn fans greeted Gus Malzahn during Monday's Tiger Walk before the BCS title game (Todd Van Emst photo)
By Charles Goldberg
PASADENA, Calif. -- Auburn came up just short of winning the national championship Monday night, but, despite losing to Florida State in the title game, finished second in the nation in both the USA Today/Coaches poll and the Associated Press poll.
Florida State collected all the first-place votes in both polls after scoring with 13 seconds left to beat Auburn 34-31 in the BCS Championship Game in the Rose Bowl. The Tigers didn't drop in the polls after the loss, staying at No. 2.
The Tigers, picked to finish fifth in the SEC West before the season, won the conference championship and finished with a 12-2 record.
"We're going up," said coach Gus Malzahn after the game. "The experience that we had… and we got most of our guys coming back, recruiting is going great, and our goal is to get back here, and I really believe we'll do it."
Auburn led the SEC in the coaches poll, followed by No. 4 South Carolina, No. 5 Missouri, No. 8 Alabama, No. 14 LSU, No. 18 Texas A&M and No. 23 Vanderbilt.
The SEC finished strong in the AP poll as well, with Auburn at No. 2 followed by No. 4 South Carolina, No. 5 Missouri, No. 7 Alabama, No. 14 LSU, No. 18 Texas A&M and No. 24 Vanderbilt.
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine