Bye Week A Time Of Self-Evaluation For Tigers

Auburn's bye week is a time of self-evaluation and learning according to coach Gene Chizik.

Auburn, Ala.—With a week off to heal its wounds and get prepared for eight consecutive weeks of play, the Auburn Tigers and coach Gene Chizik are looking for improvement on offense and defense with the Arkansas Razorbacks coming to Jordan-Hare Stadium next Saturday.

"I think entering the bye week it was a fairly good time for us," Chizik said. "Our team is physically at a point where it is arriving at the right time. We've got a lot of work to do. We'll go back and really assess and evaluate where we are with everything on our football team. We know we've got a great game against Arkansas coming up and we know that's going to be a tough SEC West battle."

Playing Clemson, Mississippi State, ULM and the finishing off the stretch against a very physical LSU team, Chizik said it has been good for his team to take a little time off and rest this week. Wanting them to get healthy for the stretch run, he noted that starting out of the gate with the schedule they had really took a toll on his team.

"I think it has been a very physical month all the way around," Chizik said. "Opening up with Clemson, that was a physical game. Mississippi State has traditionally been a very physical contest and then ending it with LSU. It's just a physical month."

With Arkansas playing Texas A&M this weekend and the Tigers off, it gives Chizik and his staff some extra time to prepare for the Razorbacks in the film room and on the practice field. Chizik said while they'll do some of that, this week is more of a chance to correct mistakes for his team and evaluate what they've done well and not so well.

"Right now more of it is our self-evaluation and where we can improve," Chizik said. "We've gone back and done a much deeper self-scout than you would normally have. You always have to self-scout, but then you've got to move on. We've had a little time to go back and do that. We'll do some on Arkansas as well."

Following a solid defensive performance in the 12-10 loss but with an offense that is still struggling to sustain drives and score points, much of the focus will be on ways to continue to progress on that side of the ball. It all starts with the play of the quarterback and Chizik said sophomore Kiehl Frazier has done some good things in four games, but there is still plenty of improvement left to make.

"The learning process is a journey for him and we know that," Chizik said. "He's certainly got a lot of improvement in front of him, but he's also done some things well too. We're trying to build on those things, but we also see that there is a great deal of improvement for him out there. He's got to continue to grow."

Auburn will return to the practice field Wednesday afternoon as the Tigers begin preparations for the Arkansas Razorbacks.


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