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First thoughts of 2009

April 3, 2009

Well, that isn’t exactly the case. These aren’t my first thoughts of 2009 on Auburn Football, and with it barely April and Spring Practice is hardly a week old, they hopefully won’t be my last either. Practices are closed, and yet video continues to surface here and there and post practice interviews help fill in some of the gaps. Speaking of filling in the gaps, check out Jay Tate and Andy Bitter, both of which seem to have some nice inside tracks to Spring Practice.

Yours truly did watch parts of the first practice of 2009 from the back steps of the coliseum the night the Basketball team let Baylor win. My impressions? A lot of movement, running and very visible coaches. By now, most Auburn fans have seen the “no drops” video and the images of Coach Gene Chizik, brace yourself, *coaching*.

I do find it interesting that Neil Caudle is taking reps with the first team and he’s exuding confidence for what has to be the first time on campus. All of Auburn awaits young Tyrik Rollison, who apparently already has his own facebook following of fans who keep the Plains alive with chatter about “qualifying.” Chris Todd is running, but not throwing. Barrett Trotter is out there, somewhere. And yet, Joe isn’t ready to join the QB controversy talk or speculation. No, similar to last year, we have a QB struggle. Having a QB struggle with say a Tim Tebow and a Mark Sanchez would be a struggle worth following. A cage match extraordinaire of field generals even Terry Bradshaw would watch. Instead, Auburn has a gaggle of play callers fighting for a starting role on a team with questionable cohesiveness on the line, big play ability at tailback, another new offensive coordinator and *gah* receivers targets buckets with holes on both ends to throw to. I’ll turn my cautious eyes toward other practice field battles.

Speaking of which, there has to be a story about Chandler “yellow shoes” Brooks at kicker. Maybe we don’t have  a shoeless Joe Jackson story, but a story nonetheless! Now there is something worth following!

On defense I can’t say I’ve read or gleaned more than the average fan. I look for us to be solid here. I don’t know why yet, but I really just think this Fall our defense will gel together enough, and if Eltoro Freeman, Josh Bynes and Craig Stevens deliver a few fan friendly blows throughout the game, we will see a defense play a season worthy of our praise.

As I’ve said since Coach Chizik’s arrival, I am not going to get carried away this year until after the month of September. Some of you know last year at this time I was reserving hotel rooms at every BCS bowl city knowing we were somewhere in the top 8. By the way, I canceled them all after the first game – seriously. I knew then it was going to be a long year, and we WON that game. This year, I want to see game preparedness, player enthusiasm on and off the field and physical play that improves with each game before I even glance at a bowl schedule. War Eagle x 10 until then.

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