Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Another wild week

The biggest news on the Plains is that, with four games still to play, Auburn head coach Tommy Tuberville's job might hang in the balance.
That's not the case if you listen to Paul Spina, who is the president pro tem of the Auburn board of trustees. Spina said today that Tuberville deserves more time to "correct mistakes." He'll also likely be required to make changes to his coaching staff.
Right now it's much ado about nothing. Nothing will happen before Saturday. In all likelihood, nothing will happen between Saturday and the Iron Bowl on Nov. 29.
That's just today's update.
On to weekly topics:
  • Kodi Burns is learning on the job as Auburn's starting quarterback. That shouldn't be a surprise. He's clearly talented, but inexperienced. As has been said several times, Burns' upside is tremendous. Burns said he is learning to go through reads better and is also learning when to tuck the football and run. Burns also said, as has been opined several times here, that he is a better runner when scrambling out of the pass game instead of on a designed run.
  • Mario Fannin is the guilty party on the third-and-goal play on Auburn's first drive against West Virginia. Fannin went right and was supposed to go left. He and Burns collided in the backfield and WVU defenders easily swarmed Fannin for a loss on the play, forcing Auburn to settle for a field goal.
  • Ryan Pugh and Jason Bosley both seem happy to return the positions at which they started the season. Bosley is far more natural at center and admits that Pugh is the better tackle. Pugh toed the program line, saying he's happy to do what's best for the team.
  • Injuries: RB Ben Tate (hamstring) is practicing. Tuberville listed him at 80 percent health-wise. CBs Jerraud Powers (hamstring) and Neiko Thorpe (ankle) have both missed some practice time this week. D-Coord Paul Rhoads said both are day-to-day. Should get an update from Tuberville this evening.
  • Defensively, several players are playing "banged up." I spoke with DT Sen'Derrick Marks and DE Antonio Coleman yesterday. Both players are working through injuries, as is much of the defensive line.
  • Marks said the defensive problems stem from "one or two guys" missing assignments. Look at where WVU made its big plays (on the perimeter) and it's a safe bet those one or two guys are outside linebackers and defensive ends.

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