Making A Move At Quarterback

Tommy Tuberville, Daniel Cobb and Noel Mazzone discuss Auburn's quarterback position after the Tigers shocked the Florida Gators.

Auburn, Ala.--Although backup Daniel Cobb's statistics were not overly impressive, the second-year Tiger made just enough key plays to lead the Tigers to a 23-20 victory over the Florida Gators. Cobb hit 11-23 passes for 152 yards and did not throw an interception. Florida star Rex Grossman completed 25-42 for 364 yards and two touchdowns, but was picked off four times by the Tigers.

QB Daniel Cobb

"We told Jason and all of the quarterbacks we were going to go with who is productive," Tuberville said. "Jason has won some games for us, but he got out there and got a little confused with what we were doing early in the game. We let him go out there two or three times and then we decided to give Daniel a chance. Sometimes that gives everybody a shot in the arm.

"We didn't play great (on offense)," Tuberville added. "I will tell you. They have a heck of a defensive football team. I have been telling everybody that is the unsung part of their team. I thought (Daniel) did a good job, but the offensive line did a good job. We didn't rush it for a lot of yards, but we did enough to get the job done."

Tuberville said that he thought his Tigers stayed calm and focused, even when things weren't going as planned.

Cobb agreed, saying, "We kept a level head. I think that is the biggest thing...I kept telling our offensive line to just play our game if we are down by seven or up by seven."

The senior said that Mazzone warned him early in the week to be ready if needed. Cobb added, "He said, ‘If we don't move the ball, I might give you a shot.' So I did what I do every week. I watched the film, studied the guys and knew whatever they would be in with every down and distance to be ready when my number was called.

"I was a little surprised, to be honest with you, that Mazzone actually went through with it. I was like, "All right, let's go. I got a chance. I know he has confidence in me and when he called my number, I didn't want to let him, or the other guys on this team, down."

Cobb performs in prime time on Saturday night.

Commenting on the decision to play Cobb, Mazzone said, "We talked about it during the week. I talked to Jason, Daniel and Jeff (Klein). We had been a little stifled with our passing game the last couple of weeks just bringing Jason along. We just felt these guys would line up in a defense where they were going to say, ‘You are not going to run the football, you are going to have to throw it.' If that was the case, we were going to put Daniel or Jeff in for a little bit. Daniel came in and did a good job. I was really happy with the way he handled the offense.

"I am still not happy with the offense though. I might be looking for a job as a copy boy one of these days if I don't keep those guys from getting the motion calls. On the quarterback draw for the touchdown they brought it back because one of our receivers was not up on the line of scrimmage. We got another big play we had to bring back because they said one of our receivers was in motion too early. I have to do a better job of coaching our guys. There is a lot of improvement we can make on offense--obviously."


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