By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN, Ala. -- Chandler Cox didn't have problems with the three quarterbacks who played or even the two running backs who took snaps.
Heck, he was one of the latter.
The Auburn H-back got his hands on the ball during the game, and Auburn almost won it, before losing to Clemson 19-13 Saturday night in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
Cox and tailback Kerryon Johnson made cameo appearances behind the center, taking those direct snaps. The real quarterback work was done by the rotating trio of Sean White, Jeremy Johnson and John Franklin III. Coach Gus Malzahn said he might rotate them again. Cox said he's good with that.
"Whoever is in there, we've got to execute," Cox said. "If Jeremy's in there, if Sean's in there, if John's in there, it doesn't matter. We just have to go with the game plan and execute."
Cox said he was not surprised to see so many quarterbacks because "all fall camp we had three guys rotating in there. I don't think that was a problem at all. I'm close to all three guys. Our whole offense is close. It's family, that's what we are, really."
White, who almost led Auburn to a last-second victory, hit 10 of 21 passes for 140 yards. Jeremy Johnson hit 4 of 6 passes for 38 yards. Franklin hit 1 of 1 passes for minus-3 yards.
"I trust all the quarterbacks, and the whole offense," Cox said.
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Malzahn said the quarterbacks were ready to share the job.
"Certain quarterbacks are better at certain plays," he said. "We've been practicing that way for a while. The guys knew what to expect."
Cox had four carries for six yards. Kerryon Johnson had 23 carries for 94 yards, 84 of those coming in the second half. Kamryn Pettway, the No. 2 tailback on the depth chart, played four offensive snaps but didn't get a carry. Freshman running backs Kam Martin and Malik Miller didn't play.
It was White who threw two long passes into the end on the final two plays. Both fell incomplete, though there were plenty of hands grabbing for them.
"We wanted the miracle to happen," Cox said.
Either way, "We're going to stay positive and keep our heads up."
Cox said the finish against the No. 2 team in the nation should give Auburn some confidence.
"I have a lot of respect for them. I don't think they're better than us, honestly," Cox said. "I think we're a very good team."
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine