Photo by Jason Caldwell

Answering Your Questions About The Auburn Tigers In This Edition Of The Monday Mailbag

Discussing Auburn football, Kodi Burns and much more in this edition of the Friday Mailbag.

AUpoker: Have you heard when the app for Android phone is expected to be available?

We have been told they are getting much closer to making that a reality. I know Mark will be excited about that because he’s using Android himself. Hopefully, it works as well as the one does right now for the I-Phone. If we get another update we’ll pass it along.


Tiger82: Where does the win in Arkansas rank on the most improbable victories chart? I'm still amazed. Very happily amazed, that is.

It’s definitely up there. I am sure where it would rank overall, but in basketball making as many shots as Auburn did against the Razorbacks always gives you a shot. If Arkansas was a better team it would be even more impressive, but they have struggled themselves. That doesn’t diminish what this Auburn team did, however, because it was definitely not something that many expected to happen. I would say a win like Minnesota over Maryland would classify as one of the most improbable kind of wins.


m5guy: Jason - I know things are never as good as they seem or as bad as they seem but the current state of our football program appears to be unstable. Although most of the moves, with the exception of Craig, could be expected with Muschamp accepting the SC job & Thompson not getting serious consideration for the DC position. Do you feel like staff wise we are in a better position than we were a year ago? Also do you think Muschamp's method of coaching (vocabulary included) didn't mesh well with Gus' methods? Thanks

I don’t know that the staff overall is in a better place because I really think highly of Muschamp and Travaris Robinson and what they do on defense, but I believe Kevin Steele, Travis Williams and Wesley McGriff are very good coaches and should be a good fit at Auburn. As for Muschamp’s method of coaching, I don’t think that was anything that was a big deal. In the end he got a chance to be a head coach again in the SEC and it would have been very surprising if he turned that down.


wtbtiger: What do you think will be the recruiting assignments with all the staff changes we have had? Do we have any elite recruiters on this staff other than Garner?

I think that’s still to be determined as far as recruiting territorites go. As for elite recruiters “Crimedog” McGriff is known as one of top recruiters in all of college football. That guy probably moves to the top of the list for the Auburn Tigers right now or at least right there with Garner. Many other guys are very good as well. Quietly Scott Fountain has done a great job in Central Florida and already has Calvin Ashley in this class as well. Tim Horton, who has been a recruiting coordinator, certainly has a strong reputation as a recruiter as does Herb Hand.


ware12: Craig leaving for LSU can be positioned as "a career move" decision but there is plenty of evidence indicatiing it was more. i.e. DC not thanking Gus when he left and saying playing for Miles was not a lateral move.  One person leaving is not reason for alarm, but DC is not the first.  We all know several coaches left Gus' staff for lateral moves this year.   It's also a known fact the #1 reason people leave their jobs is conflict with their boss.   Are there leadership issues at AU? Conflicts in personalities? Disagreements on philosophy or religion's place in football?  The departures may all be normal in the industry but it seems odd.  I don't agree with the "forum vultures" who have already turned on DC and are discrediting his value and commitment to AU. Shamefully predictable!  

I don’t know what other coach besides Craig left for a lateral move. It certainly wasn’t Muschamp, who left to be a head coach again. T-Rob left to be a defensive coordinator. As for Lance Thompson it was an opportunity to coach with Muschamp and keep the same dynamics with the guy who brought him to Auburn. Had he been offered the defensive coordinator job he wanted I believe he would have stayed in Auburn without even thinking about it. J.B. Grimes was asked to find another job and it was clear from the beginning that Herb Hand was the guy Malzahn had a good feeling about this time around.

As for Dameyune Craig, there’s no question the guy can recruit and signed a very good class of receivers. I happen to think Kodi Burns will be a very good recruiter as well and it wouldn’t surprise me to see the receivers take strides forward.


MSandPHDatAU:What player would you say Landon Rice reminds you of the most?

That’s a tough question. I would probably say Walter Reeves in terms of his physical size and what he brings to the table because he can block and is more than just a receiving tight end. If he can have the type of impact that Reeves did with the Tigers that would be a very good thing.


AUTigerBSME90: Any thoughts on potential grad transfers or Spring signees for the men's basketball team?

The grad transfers usually start to become known right after the season so we’ll have a better idea of some of those guys pretty soon. As for a spring signee, one name to watch for is big man Yuat Alok from Impact Basketball Academy in Sarasota, Fla. He’s a pretty talented big man who can run the floor and his game is improving after moving from New Zealand.


tigerpi: Can you tell us what you know about Kodi and his coaching. What do you think and what have you heard about his ability to recruit and do you have any guesses to where he might be assigned (area) to recruit

I spoke with Kodi briefly on Thursday and he wasn’t sure what his recruiting areas were going to be just yet. As for his coaching ability he did a great job at both Samford and Middle Tennessee. His receivers for the Blue Raiders last year blew up with a freshman earning All-American honors. That shows me he’s pretty good at what he does. As for his recruiting, knowing Kodi and his personality I think he’ll be a strong recruiter once he gets more seasoning and the good news for him is that Auburn just signed four wide receivers. That takes some of the pressure off this first year.


nhill76: After you mentioned him last week,is there a chance Gus would bring in Blankenship to fill the offensive analyst spot that is open?

I think anything is a possibility, but I would expect another coach from the high school ranks to maybe fill a spot if there is an opportunity there just like Austin Tucker just did. He played QB at Shiloh Christian in Arkansas and played for the Razorbacks. He was recently the offensive coordinator at Hewitt-Trussville where he coached for Malzahn protege Josh Floyd.

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