Sep 6, 2013
Philip Lutzenkirchen answers some hard-hitting questions during a Twitter Q&A (Kirk Sampson photo)
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN, Ala. — Philip Lutzenkirchen can grab a seat as a fan in Jordan-Hare Stadium on Saturday, and if he does, he plans to do what a lot of other fans do.
He's going to yell for the quarterback to throw it to the tight end.
"All day. I'll never stop yelling that," joked the former Auburn tight end who has a new perspective after four years with the Tigers and an NFL camp with the St. Louis Rams.
Lutzenkirchen made the rounds at the Auburn athletic complex Friday on the eve of Saturday's game against Arkansas State, whether it was visiting with former teammates or hosting an athletic department Twitter Q&A or discussing Gus Malzahn's return as head coach.
He said there's a different feeling around the team this year after a tough 3-9 season.
"It's just a different energy level. Everyone is excited," Lutzenkirchen said. "They've all bought back into Gus' system. It's an upbeat energy.
"It was fun to watch last week, seeing an offense I played in. It's good that he finally has the players he recruited for the three years he was here. They're older and developed now. I think it's going to be an explosive offense."
That's the former player/current fan talking.
"It was good to see everyone, but this will be the first time I'll experience a game as a fan, being on the other side of the gate for Tiger Walk. But I'm excited to see a game here for the first time."
That's not counting all the games one of Auburn's most popular players in recent years played in. He set the school record for touchdown receptions by a tight end, but he's best remembered for just one of them, the one that put Auburn ahead of Alabama in the fourth quarter to set the stage for a 28-27 win on the way to the 2010 BCS national championship.
Lutzenkirchen's final Auburn season was cut short by hip surgery. He and former Auburn teammate Emory Blake were two of the late cuts by the Rams. Daren Bates made it. Lutzenkirchen says he hopes he gets a chance to continue to play.
"I'm waiting around to see if I get another call. Hopefully, I'll get picked up in a couple of weeks by another team," he said.
Here's some of Lutz's tweets from Friday:
When asked about the best Auburn athletes...
Auburn Football @FootballAU
@michaeldahmke Bo Jackson, Neil Caudle, Emory Blake. In no particular order. Neil was the purest athlete though. #AskLutz@lutzenkirchen
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer for AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine
Video: Check out the fans cheering the Tigers as they left the athletic complex Friday.