Mason Plans to Stay In Touch With Auburn

Tre Mason is leaving for the NFL, but said he plans to have a strong relationship with Auburn.

Auburn, Ala.--Tre Mason said he is still working on the details in preparing for the NFL Draft, but said that one of the things he plans to do is participate with his Auburn teammates in AU's annual Pro Day workout for NFL scouts.

Asked where he plans to train for a likely invitation to the NFL Combine, he said, "I'm not 100 percent sure on that. That's still a process I'm talking things over with my family."

He noted that once he leaves Auburn for pro football he plans to keep his relationship with the coaching staff and the university.

"I'm pretty close to finishing my degree and I'm definitely going to come back to school," Mason said. "I wasn't going to take all these classes for three years and not finish. I'm definitely going to finish my degree."

Mason and the Tigers wrapped up an impressive season this week, losing 34-31 in the BCS Championship Game to FSU in a contest played at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. The running back was the most impressive performer in the contest as he rushed for 195 yards and one touchdown and he also scored on a screen pass play.

Mason predicted the Tigers will be strong without him for the 2014 season. "I see them being national champs and that's not going to change," he said. "Me declaring for the draft, that's not going to keep me away from my teammates. These are still my teammates and my brothers.

"I'm going to try to make it seem like I never left," he added. "I'm going to stay in touch with these guys to make sure their mind is right and to keep grinding, do what it takes to get back to the top."

Mason is shown in action as a junior. He rushed for 1,816 yards and scored 35 touchdowns in 2013.

Asked how he believes he will be remembered at Auburn after breaking the school single-season rushing record, Mason said, "I just came in wanting to be the best, and I just feel like breaking Bo Jackson's record was a goal of mine since the beginning of the season. I believed and God blessed me with the opportunity to do that."

The 2013 SEC Offensive Player of the Year said that his three years at Auburn have been memorable ones. Commenting on the relationships he has developed, Mason said the coaches he has played for others he met at AU changed his life and attitude in positive ways.

"They made me into the man I am today, a more respectful person and to remain hungry and realize the blessings that are given to you," he said.

Despite being officially listed at 5-10, 198 pounds for his junior season, Mason developed into a power runner who was especially effective running between the tackles.

Asked if his lack of size could hurt him with pro scouts, Mason said, "I guess that's why they've got to watch tape. I'm not afraid to put my head and nose in there and get dirty. I feel like I can run between the tackles and also outside the tackles. I just try to be very dynamic and run the ball different ways."

Mason has added size and strength since his freshman season when he arrived weighing around 175 pounds. "You know I came in small, frail," he said. "I was recruited as a speed guy and I always had people tell me I was too small to be a running back. I had coaches like Coach (Ryan) Russell and Coach Yox (Kevin Yoxall) to help me get bigger, faster and stronger.

"Coaches like Coach (Rhett) Lashlee and Coach (Tim) Horton helped with some things I needed to work on like ball security and just becoming a better running back and also a better man," he added. "The coaching staff I've had has helped me to be the man I am today."

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