It is even difficult to find someone on the SEC Network to say anything positive about this Auburn team and it is surprising to me how much lack of respect there is from those people. It’s like it is a foregone conclusion that the Tigers are going to be either last or next to last in the SEC West.
When I picked up a paper this week I noticed that Auburn is not in the preseason Top 25. I realize the team didn’t have the type of season that was predicted last year, but that has got zero to do with how this year’s team is going to perform.
Auburn has a different coaching staff and a lot of players who have grown up in the past year. Also, there is different leadership on this team from the players, which I think will make a positive difference.
Some of the problem children are gone and I don’t see any of those long looks and selfish players around the practice arena or in and around the athletic complex. As an old man who has seen lots of them, I just love the players and this team has got a chance to be special, and I guess it really and truly comes down to lack of respect. That can be a great motivator.
Having somebody not respect you hits at the core of your being because I try to respect everybody. I can recall being a part of teams as a player and coach that weren’t respected and it really bothered me. I also remember that some of those teams won championships
For those kind of teams the days don’t get too hot, the practices don’t get too long and the circumstances don’t get too tough to overcome. I?am seeing signs that is that type of team Auburn will put on the field this year from what I have witnessed going back to spring training.
If I am any judge, and you know that I’m just a football fan and an ex-coach, I think the Auburn people are going to love watching this football team play. I think they are going to earn the respect of football fans across America. That’s what I think today, less than two weeks before they kick it off, and I’m excited about seeing Auburn take the field against Clemson in the first ball game, an opponent with a potentially great team. There’s not a better opportunity out there to get your respect back if you are an Auburn football player.
In my opinion you don’t necessarily have to win to get your respect back although that would be a big deal. What you have got to do is go out there and compete, give everything you’ve got and leave everything you’ve got on the field. Auburn people will accept that and embrace it.