Oct. 2, 2013
Ramblin’ around …
It was almost 10 years ago that Ole Miss, which comes to town Saturday, last won at Jordan-Hare Stadium, but it isn’t the 24-20 score that stands out from that November night.
In the final minute of the game, quarterback Jason Campbell dropped back to pass on third down. Sophomore wide receiver Ben Obomanu broke wide open in the end zone. Campbell threw a strike for what surely would be the winning touchdown. Obomanu dropped. Flat out dropped it. Ole Miss won the game.
But that’s not what stands out either.
What stands out is what Obomanu did after the game. He could have hidden in the locker room. Instead, he came out, eyes red, and faced the assembled media. He answered every question that was put to him.
He was a man that night, and he won the everlasting respect of everyone who was there. A year later, he was a crucial part of a team that went 13-0 and won the Southeastern Conference championship. He went on to play in the NFL for the Seattle Seahawks and New York Jets.
I got tired Tuesday just watching Auburn women’s basketball coach Terri Williams-Flournoy put her team through the first day of preseason practice. You can’t play Williams-Flournoy’s style without being in top condition. Just getting through a practice is hard enough.
My guess is it’s just a matter of time before she puts Auburn back among the Southeastern Conference’s elite.
I always find it interesting when coaches take to the airwaves to criticize schools for firing other coaches. It seems just a big hypocritical to me. After all, most college football head coaches got their jobs because someone was fired.
It’s hard to feel sorry all those multimillionaires when they lose their jobs and get even more millions to take with them. The real losers are the assistant coaches, who suddenly face uncertain futures. But it’s all part of the business, and they know that when they get into it.
The first varsity competition between Auburn and Alabama in the 2013-2014 academic year is set for tonight. The Tiger and Tide volleyball teams meet at Auburn Arena.
Both Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn and Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze beat the odds by rising through the ranks of high school coaches to become head coaches in the SEC.
Malzahn has long said there are plenty of other high school coaches who could do the same, given the opportunities.
““I feel very blessed to be able to do what I am doing, just the fact that I was given the opportunity. There are a lot of great high school coaches out there that can be very successful in college. They just haven’t been given the opportunity. Hugh and I have talked about that numerous times, that we feel blessed we were given opportunities.”
Until next time …
Phillip Marshall is a Senior Writer for AuburnTigers.com. Follow Marshall on Twitter: