Phillip Marshall: Not-so-deep Christmas thinking

Dec. 25, 2013

Just thinkin’ on Christmas morning …

How many people in the wide world of college football realize that Auburn’s Gus Malzahn, in his second season as a head coach, has won 19 of his last 20 games? …

When did the zone read, run by teams from coast to coast, and handing the ball off to the tailback behind a dominating offensive line become trick plays?  …

And when did a 109-yard return by the best return man in the Southeastern Conference become a miracle instead of a great play? …

It’s ironic that Auburn and Florida State, 190 miles apart, have to travel all the way to the West Coast to play each other for the first time since 1990. …

Will the BCS Championship Game be the last Auburn game for left tackle Greg Robinson and running back Tre Mason? Most seem to think it will be, but I’m not so sure. We’ll know by Jan. 15. …

I’m not one who is bothered by the number of bowl games, because I see no problem in letting as many players as possible have that experience. But, based on the empty seats you see on television, you have to wonder how long some of those bowls are going to be around. …

Word I hear from Tallahassee is that it isn’t just Florida State fans who expect to have a romping, stomping good time at the Rose Bowl on Jan. 6. Players and coaches are supremely confident, too. Of course, when you’re 13-0 and have won 12 games by 27 points or more, that kind of confidence is understandable. …


 

 

Auburn players and coaches are being very careful about what they are saying, but rest assured they also are not lacking for confidence. …

Some fellow from Athlon was talking on the radio on Tuesday. He said they have Auburn ranked No. 4 in their early preseason poll for next season but that he thought that was too high because “Auburn was lucky in game after game this season.” Maybe if folks say that enough they’ll convince themselves it’s true. …

In the last 10 years, Auburn has won three SEC championships, Alabama two, LSU two, Florida two and Georgia one. Auburn has had two perfect seasons and Alabama one. Alabama has won three national championships, Florida two, Auburn one and LSU one. Auburn has a chance to add another on Jan. 6.

Perhaps most remarkably, Auburn’s three SEC championship teams were coached by three different people – Tommy Tuberville, Gene Chizik and Gus Malzahn. What does that say? It says that if you can coach you can win big at Auburn. …

Something tells me that Tony Barbee’s fourth Auburn basketball team is going to end up being a good bit better than a lot people expect. We’ll find out soon. Southeastern Conference play starts Jan. 9 at Ole Miss. …

And most importantly, Merry Christmas to one and all.

 
       

Phillip Marshall is a Senior Writer for AuburnTigers.com. Follow Marshall on Twitter: