Senior Hoping For Expanded Role In AU Offense

A pair of Auburn coaches discuss Jay Prosch's role in the 2013 offense as the fullback/H-back prepares for his second season with the Tigers.

Auburn, Ala.--Scott Fountain notes that Gus Malzahn is looking for ways to involve guys who are "winners" in the offense as much as possible. The Auburn assistant football coach says that Jay Prosch fits that description.

Prosch, a senior who joined the Auburn team last year after transferring from the University of Illinois, will see action at fullback and H-back for the Tigers and could occasionally line up at tight end.

Last season Prosch caught just five passes, a number that is likely to rise considerably now that the senior has shown the new coaching staff he catches the ball well.

"Coach Malzahn is real big about accountability and what different kids can do from their spot," Fountain said. "If in his mind a kid is a winner and is about the team, Coach Malzahn is going to find a way to put those guys in different spots to help us be successful."

One of the ways that Prosch hopes he can help the team be successful is to become a bigger part of the passing attack. "I would like that," he said. "I think I have good hands as a receiver."

The head coach agrees that is the case.

"He really surprised me in the spring because he has got very good hands," Malzahn said. "He has got a chance to really be a special player in this offense. I think he can do a little bit of what Eric Smith did and a little bit of what Philip Lutzenkirchen did. He has got a lot of ability and loves football."

Jay Prosch is shown at practice inside AU's indoor facility.

That passion for the game is something that really stands out to Fountain. "I think football is really, really important to Jay," the position coach said. "He loves the game and he could do it 24/7. We have some kids who really like football and some who love football. He is one who really loves football. You can see that with him on the field.

"Jay is also a kid who wants to hold other kids on our team accountable for what they are doing, too," Fountain pointed out. "He doesn't mind speaking up. Those type of guys are hard to find."

Last season Prosch carried the football 12 times for 38 yards and scored two touchdowns. His five receptions netted 19 yards.

In his first two seasons of college football playing at Illinois the fullback developed a reputation as one of the top blockers in the Big 10 Conference, but he seldom touched the football. "Coming from Illinois I think he had something like one catch and one carry," Fountain said.

"In our offense we will be able to do some things to get him the football. For a 260-pound guy he really runs well and catches well. He is not a Brandon Fulse or a C.J. Uzomah in that sense, but from the position he is working from he is a very talented kid."

Prosch noted that he has been trying to take more of a leadership role as a senior, something he was not comfortable with doing as a newcomer on the team last year. Fountain said that is showing.

"Coach (Ryan) Russell down in the weight room is a guy who has brought a lot of energy to our football team and brought a lot of confidence back," Fountain said. "I think Jay has been a big part of that. He has been a good leader for us."

With the Tigers less than two weeks away from their season opener vs. Washington State, Prosch is excited about playing a game and said he is encouraged with how the offense is developing. "It's really starting to flow now," he said. "It's starting to look like an offense. It's starting to come together and it's exciting."

Inside The AU Tigers Top Stories