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Auburn's offense shows progress, says Rhett Lashlee
Oct. 26, 2014

Nick Marshall comes in for one of his three Auburn touchdowns against South Carolina

By Charles Goldberg

AUBURN, Ala. -- Rhett Lashlee saw the 551 yards and the 8.9 yards per snap and the 13-of-15 passing and declared Auburn's 42-35 win over South Carolina a good Saturday night.

"Progress," said Auburn's offensive coordinator Sunday night after reviewing the game film.

"I thought we played a very complete game, for the most part. We were trying to trying to get a little bit of the edge that we had lost a little bit. I think the bye week was good for that. I thought most of our guys really bought into playing hard, playing unselfish, playing with and without the ball, making plays."

Auburn turned in its second best yardage output the season a day before the Tigers jumped to No. 4 in the national rankings. The Tigers will take that to No. 7 Ole Miss for a 6 p.m. Saturday game on ESPN.

The Tigers will get there with more bounce in their step after turning up the offense against South Carolina after watching mistakes sink their effort at Mississippi State.

What was not to like Saturday night? Auburn moved to ninth in the nation in rushing and 19th in total offense.

Nick Marshall accounted for four touchdowns and Cameron Artis-Payne rushed for 167 yards. Five guys had carries, seven players caught passes. It was shades of 2013.

"Overall, our tempo was good, we executed at a higher level. I think, in general, our guys had a little bit of that edge that, quite honestly, we didn't have to start with," Lashlee said.

"I thought we got better up front. I thought our running backs ran hard. I thought Nick played well, for the most part. I thought our receivers when they needed to make plays made them and when not, they blocked and played really hard without the ball. 

Lashlee said Auburn's final drive was disappointing, but "overall, no penalties, no turnovers, and we were able to keep answering when we needed to on some long drives. I thought that was really key."

Lashlee was asked about Auburn getting its "edge" back, something coach Gus Malzahn talked about last season. Sunday night, Lashlee defined it as a team concept.

"I think the best way is you're physical, guys know exactly what to do and they do it and you've got 11 guys who -- you know what? -- nobody really cares who gets the credit this game," Lashlee said. "If one receiver catches eight balls, great. If we only throw it 14 times and we run for 400 yards, great. If we got to throw it to win, great. Everybody is going to do their job, and they're not going to worry about where the ball goes or who it goes to. It's going to come to those guys when it needs to. We can be efficient in the passing game. We can be downhill and aggressive in the run game. We can get the ball on the perimeter. We worked hard on it for two weeks. Our guys bought in and practiced really hard and at a different level. The urgency was there."

The weekend:
• Auburn's win over South CarolinaThe game story
• Playmakers: They made the plays
• Surprise: It's Brandon Fulse
• Notebook: Jonathan Jones and a record night for Jordan-Hare

Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at Follow him on Twitter:



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