Win over Florida makes Auburn blowout even more inexcusable

Unlike most fans I didn’t really jump on the Hogs after they got dumptrucked by Auburn, because I felt it was entirely possible that they simply weren’t that good. I knew they weren’t as bad as they looked, but when a bad team goes on the road against a really good- maybe even great- team at home, things can get out of hand. But this was different. It was like Jekyll and Hyde from the Auburn game, and there’s just no reason for that, especially after seeing how Auburn struggled- at home- to beat freakin’ Vanderbilt.

Simply put, the Hogs just quit two weeks ago, from the coaches all the way down to the players, and that can’t happen. Maybe it’d be different if the Hogs had struggled in a close win against the Gators, but they beat the brakes off of them, especially on defense. It’s kinda like having a kid in school who struggles all semester, pulling in D’s and C’s, but then aces the finals. Of course you’re proud of them, but then you’re gonna jump their case for not doing better earlier, because now you know they’ve got it in them. If they had been doing their best and just weren’t very smart, that’d be one thing. But now that you know they’re smarter than that, you’re gonna be on their case the rest of the year. And that’s how I feel about this team. I posted earlier about how I felt they were overrated earlier in the year, but after the Auburn game I had come to the conclusion that maybe they just aren’t that good. Now that I know who they are, I don’t expect to see a performance like the one on the Plains for the rest of the season (or the rest of Bielema’s tenure, for that matter). I’m proud of the Hogs for their dominating effort Saturday, but now I’m even more disappointed in how they laid down two weeks ago.

Piggie Smalls…I am with you all the way about that bad smell/taste. I have said before in other posts that I wonder if there was some internal strife going on that the public was never made aware of. What ever it was got remedied before the Florida game though. HOGS YA’LL.

Couple of things to consider:

  1. Auburn had 2 weeks to prepare for us. Some people don’t prescribe to the idea that bye weeks make that much of a difference while other do, BUT even my wife, who knows jack about football, watched that game with me and stated “it’s like they are in the huddle with Arkansas,” meaning they knew exactly what we were going to do on offense and defense.

  2. This was the 4th straight game against top SEC West opponents. Our boys were worn out and injured.

  3. Auburn barely beat Vandy because they didn’t have their starting QB and most of their team was battered and bruised. The announcers said as much.

Now I agree it was still unacceptable and that it looked like some of the players quit. BUT, I disagree that the Florida win makes the Auburn loss worse. I believe the Florida game proves the the Auburn game was an apparition.

I was very upset and depressed after the Auburn game. That said, I still picked us to beat UF (I didn’t expect the kicking we gave them though!)

I think Auburn game was much more of a “perfect storm” for Auburn than anything else (this isn’t an excuse, we should not be losing to anyone that bad in year 4) but you have to consider the factsO:

  1. Auburn has a better team than us. If we played them 10 times they would win most if not all the time.
  2. They had 2 weeks to rest up and prepare. Both are HUGE.
  3. Some down play the “Gus wants to beat Arkansas” angle, I do not. I think he really really wanted to beat us just because we are Arkansas.
  4. Just a few weeks ago Gus’s job was on the line. Before they played LSU the thought was the loser is out of a job (and it was true). I am not saying he would have lost his job if he lost to us, but he needed the win more than BB did. If Gus wins the rest of the games except for Alabama he will not be on the “hot seat.” If he loses to Alabama and someone else he, in my opinion, won’t be in danger of being fired, but he will start next year on the hot seat to some extent. Gus just needed it more.
  5. We were tired. Week after week of hard games with no break.

Take away any of issues 2 - 5 and Auburn still wins, but it probably isn’t the kicken we got.

You give any of the Sec coaches that have talent two weeks to prepare and your going to be in for a long Saturday. We did the same thing against Florida that Auburn did to us,rested,made some changes, got healthy,rested, regrouped,rested and had the home field advantage and showed up rested and ready to play. We used players differently and were more physical, we also found some quality play from reserves or depth as some prefer to call them. Either way Auburn & Florida are history and LSU is what it’s all about now, a win Saturday would help greatly to continue recruiting well in Louisiana, especially with nothing settled with a head coach at Lsu. A tough one dimensional team at least to this point, with a good defense comes to town looking for revenge. WPS

Some fans want to use that bye week Auburn had before the Hogs as their predominate excuse for the way the Hogs performed in that game. I remember Saban complaining one year when 4 or 5 of his SEC opponents had bye weeks right before they faced his Tide. It does give a team a significant preparation advantage in the highly competitive SEC, no doubt.

However did Saban have blow out no show losses on the gridiron all that season of the perpetual byes he & his team endured? No, Saban just coached a little harder that year.

On the issue of Malzahn being fired up about beating the Hogs. I think that is as obvious as the nose on his face.

Bielema and his staff need to intelligently take all this into account when playing Auburn especially with byes involved. Do some innovative coaching and aggressively address fundamentals as blocking & tackling. Not produce a team that simply throws in the towel after the first offensive play by the opponent.

On a given day, even big underdogs sometimes win. Therefore, comparing scores on just two games has little validity. Ifyou want to compare scores, you should look at the entire season or least at considerably more than two games.

Someone else called the Auburn game a “perfect storm”… I agree but for slightly different reasons… style mis-match, bye week, road game, hogs 8th wk in a row… However it did expose issues that do exist and must be addressed, but none are surprises. The OL is still developing, the young RBs are still developing, we struggle with spread and HUNH offenses the have running QBs (read as lacking team speed on D). Some of these issues have improved over the season and should continue to (hopefully) and all require more recruiting going forward. The FL game was very encouraging, but all the issues that hurt against Auburn turned in our favor. I like being at home and the style match up with LSU. While Miss St and Mizzou are not as talented they do pose matchup / style issues and they are road games. Hogs have shown an ability to improve overall as the season progresses under CBB. A 2-1 record to finish would be another yr over yr improvement at 8-4. I think they can do this and with a break or two, I’m hoping for 3-0… Hogs at 9-3 will help the next recruiting class as CBB continues building a solid foundation.

That was me, and those are exactly the reasons it was a perfect storm. But remember the week before Auburn we beat Ole Miss, which is a spread team with a running threat at QB, and more or less contained Chad Kelly. I think the perfect storm factors came together that night at Jordan-Hare and everything snowballed from there. We’ve had that happen in our favor too. You may not be old enough to remember the '81 Texas game. Texas came in #1 after drilling OU; we had lost to TCU two weeks before for the first time since 1958. But Texas started fumbling and throwing interceptions from the opening kickoff, we took advantage almost every time and it snowballed on them. Result: 42-11, and the goalposts wound up down on Dickson Street.

Yeah, and Buffalo beat New England at Foxboro this year 16 - 0. It happens and Bama has not went unscathed just yet. SEC West is more like pro football than any conference in CFB. Let downs happen and we aren’t going undefeated any time soon.