The Dye-Log: AU's Hire Great, LSU's Not

College Football Hall of Fame coach Pat Dye writes about the Auburn Tigers and the BCS title game in this edition of The Dye-Log.

I am very impressed with Gene Chizik's hire of Brian VanGorder as Auburn's new defensive coordinator. He brings great credentials to his new position and it is an exciting hire for Coach Chizik and Auburn fans.


Like I have told my friends and others who have asked me about Auburn's search for defensive and offensive coordinators, there is no need to worry because the head coach knows what he is doing and he will come up with a good one.

On the subject of SEC head coaches, the one in Baton Rouge, Les Miles, must be seeing red with the way his team performed in the BCS Championship Game.

I knew that LSU was facing a very difficult situation going into the game against a team they had already beaten and might not be fired up to play again, but I had no idea that they would be as sorry as they were in the championship game. I was really disappointed in their offensive game plan and the fact they played with no emotion.

I don't know how you see that kind of performance coming, but when there are five or six weeks between games a team can lose its edge. I wondered if that would be the case with LSU because they had already beaten LSU in Tuscaloosa.

On the other side of the field, I expected Alabama to play with more of an emotional edge after narrowly losing the regular season matchup. I?thought LSU would have a lot to overcome and that was the case.

Something about Coach Miles that really disappointed me in BCS game was his team's effort. I have never paid much attention to what they're doing offensively and defensively. I mainly judge them by how hard they played the game and they've always played hard and been a passionate football team. For some reason, LSU wasn't a passionate football team in the national championship game. Maybe somebody else can explain it, but I can't.

I thought Coach Nick Saban and his Alabama staff made a few subtle changes that made a difference in the game. Obviously, they had worked extremely hard to stop the option and when LSU ran its little bubble pass in the option, which appeared to be the way LSU was going to attack the defense, Alabama was sitting on the ball, right on top of it.

LSU didn't try to throw the ball down field, and maybe they didn't have time to, I don't know. But I do know that if you can't attack Alabama down the field then you've got no chance against them because they're going to play so many people close to the line of scrimmage that you can't consistently control the football.

Alabama did a nice job with the specialty teams and the kicking game. The kicker made his field goals except for one that was blocked and LSU finished the game with a minimal amount of return yardage.

I understand the game was one of the lowest rated in the history of the BCS title game. I'm not surprised. If LSU had been playing Oklahoma State it would've been a much more interesting football game and I believe the number of viewers would have been higher.

It won't surprise me if we see more tweaking done with the BCS system with serious consideration for a one-plus game that this season would have set up one more game with Alabama playing Oklahoma State for the national title.

(If you have a question or a subject you would like me to write about in future columns, you can email it to

Editor's Note: This is part of a series of columns that College Football Hall of Fame member Pat Dye is writing for about the game he played and coached. An All-American player at Georgia and one of the top head coaches in SEC history at Auburn, he also served as a head coach at East Carolina and Wyoming. Dye participates in the Legends Poll, a Top 25 rating of the best teams in college football as determined by a panel of all-star former head coaches. Dye writes three columns for Dye-Log, the Dye-Gest and Pat's Picks.

Pat Dye's Crooked Oaks Hunting Preserve and Lodge

Pat Dye's Quail Hollow Gardens

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