AU 62, WCU 3: News, Notes & Quotes, Part One

A report on Auburn's Homecoming victory over Western Carolina is featured as the Tigers improved their record to 5-1.

Auburn, Ala.--There were a lot of happy Auburn football players following their 62-3 Homecoming victory over Western Carolina and without a doubt one of the happiest was the only senior on offense, fullback Jay Prosch.

Prosch did something that he has never accomplished before in a football game at Auburn, at the University of Illinois or in high school when he caught a touchdown pass.

"I wasn't expecting it," he said of the eight-yard pass from freshman Jeremy Johnson. "It was awesome and felt really good."

The pass was the first college touchdown toss from Johnson, the first of four on the day. "I certainly wasn't the first option on the play," Prosch explained. "I got past the linebackers and found and open spot in the end zone. Jeremy looked at me, I looked back at him, then he threw it in there pretty hard. It was exciting."

Prosch said he wasn't into all of the "hype" leading up to Johnson starting, which wasn't announced by Coach Gus Malzahn until Friday evening, but speculated on by fans all week after Marshall was injured late in the previous week's game against Ole Miss.

"I kind of figured Jeremy was going to start because Nick was sitting out a little at practice," Prosch stated. "I'm confident in both of them (Johnson and Marshall). As a player, it doesn't matter to me who is in the game. I believe they are both great quarterbacks. Whatever the coaches decide I'm good with. Jeremy may have started as a true freshman, but acted like a mature senior. He controlled the offense and it was obvious he was confident in himself."

Prosch was happy to be part of a record-setting day for the Tigers, who piled up a Auburn record 712 yards offense and rushed for 511 yards, even if it was against a weak opponent.

"The biggest thing about a game like this is to start fast, don't mess around and do anything dumb," he commented. "We needed to come out and play football and that's what we did. It feels to set the school record for offense."

In other news and notes:

*In addition to Johnson making his first career start Saturday against Western Carolina, Avery Young made his first start of the season at right tackle.

A redshirt freshman, the 6-6, 304-pound Young started Auburn's first three games in 2012 before being shut down for the season due to a shoulder injury.

Patrick Miller, who was also a true freshman last year, had started 15 consecutive games at right tackle, but wasn't dressed out on Saturday. Gus Malzahn said that Miller was missing due to an off the field issue and the head coach said that is also why Brandon Fulse was not dressed for the Homecoming game. Malzahn declined to say when Miller or Fulse would be back.

*Junior wide receiver Trovon Reed also made his first start of the season in Fulse's spot. It was Reed's fourth career start. Johnson's first completion as a Tiger went to Reed for 15 yards on Auburn's opening touchdown drive. Like Miller, Fulse was on the sideline, but not in uniform because of an off-field issue.

*Shon Coleman wore No. 37 for the second straight game. The redshirt freshman offensive tackle who battled back from a battle with cancer, lined up at left tackle for an unbalanced line with Greg Robinson at right tackle with Avery Young and Chad Slade also on the right side during the first half. Coleman switched back to his regular No. 72 in the second half while playing left tackle.

*Cassanova McKinzy was back at linebacker and leaving the previous game against Ole Miss with a neck injury that led to him being was carted off the field and transported to East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika. He returned to the sideline for the second half of the Ole Miss game while wearing a soft neck brace.

*Junior center Reese Dismukes and senior cornerback Chris Davis continued to serve as Auburn captains for homecoming, something they have done all season except when Davis was injured for the LSU game.

*Saturday marked Auburn's 100th Homecoming and the 87th homecoming football game. The Tigers have a 75-8-4 Homecoming record after Saturday's victory.

*Auburn has now won 81 straight games when scoring 30 or more points and is 298-4 all time when scoring at least 30 points in a game.

*Auburn, Air Force, Minnesota and Arkansas State are the only teams nationally to have four different rushers this season who gained 100 yards in a game. No other SEC team has more than two. Tre Mason, Nick Marshall, Corey Grant and Cameron Artis-Payne all have 100-yard rushing games for the Tigers in 2013.

*The Tigers were one of the least penalized teams in the country before Saturday. Going into the Western Carolina game, Auburn had been flagged only 22 times, including nine times against Arkansas State. Auburn had only one penalty for five yards against Mississippi State. Other than the Arkansas State game, prior to the Western Carolina contest the Tigers had been penalized only 13 other times in four games. The Tigers were whistled three times for 20 yards against the Catamounts. One was an intentional delay of game penalty.

*Corey Grant's 51-yard run was his third touchdown of the season and his second TD of more than 50 yards . *Jonathon Mincy's 10-yard second-quarter interception was the first of his career.

*Cameron Artis-Payne's 59-yard run in the third quarter was a career long and he had his second career 100-yard game for Auburn.

*Chandler Shakespeare, who joined the team as a walk-on, ran for a career-high 61 yards on 10 carries, all in the fourth quarter.

*Molly Ann Dutton of Gardendale was voted Miss Homecoming 2013.

*Auburn's 1963 Orange Bowl team was honored on its 50th anniversary in pregame ceremonies.

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