Tigers Have Tune-up Before Final Scrimmage

Auburn went through the paces on Tuesday as they prepare for Wednesday's final scrimmage of the spring.

Auburn, Ala.--The NCAA mandates that teams must practice twice in shorts out of the 15 allotted days in the spring, and for the Auburn Tigers that second day was on Tuesday as the team worked out for an hour and a half in preparation for Wednesday's final scrimmage of the spring. Coach Tommy Tuberville said the day was a good one as the team spent a great deal of time learning some new things and polishing up what they've been through already this spring.

"Today we went in shorts and put in a couple of new things on offense," Tuberville said. "We ran it against the defense so they won't be surprised. Tomorrow on both sides we're going to let it loose. We're going to run everything that we've put in defensively and offensively. In the kicking game we're going to put a lot of pressure on our kickers.

"Hopefully tomorrow we'll have both sides step up a little bit. It's kind of hard to pull for one or the other because you don't know how good you are, but offensively we've been doing pretty well. Defensively we haven't been doing as well, but we held back a little bit. Tomorrow should be more of a defensive scrimmage so we'll see what happens."

Cole Bennett catches a pass during Tuesday's practice.

With a new depth chart expected to be released on Thursday following Wednesday's 100-play scrimmage in Jordan-Hare Stadium, Tuberville said the intensity should be high with several positions still looking for someone to step up and take over the job. Among those are middle linebacker where Mayo Sowell is trying to hold off a charge from both Quentin Groves and Kevis Burnam.

"We're still looking for some consistency, but we've still got a long way to go in two-a-days," Tuberville said. "This will have some say of where we stand going into two-a-days, but it will all change when they get to that point. Plus we have a lot of new guys coming in, so we'll see what happens."

Tuesday much of the practice was spent in position groups as the players worked on fundamentals and technique in the last learning practice of the spring. Offensively the wide receivers got a lot of work on route running and catching passes, but didn't have a great day in the one-on-one drills against the defensive backs with several dropped balls. Two players did stand out though as both Devin Aromashodu and Lee Guess looked good in the drill and consistently beat their defender.

Defensively Tez Doolittle got some much needed learning time at end after moving from tackle in mid-stream this spring. He got a baptism by fire on Tuesday from Coach Terry Price, but moved well and showed he has the ability to be a help on the strong side at end while Doug Langenfeld continues to be hobbled by a sprained knee. He missed Tuesday's practice. Also missing a good portion of the day was defensive back David Irons, who tweaked a muscle that he strained earlier in the spring.

Kevin Sears moves to the ball with Coach Joe Whitt looking on.

With one practice left before putting the pads away until August the Tigers will hit the practice field at 3:15 p.m. on Wednesday before starting the scrimmage at 4 p.m. Tuberville said this will be the scrimmage with the most weight of any the team goes through this spring and should be an interesting one to watch.

"Tomorrow is it," Tuberville said. "We're going to see how everybody stands and what they do with all the formations, all the plays and all the blitzes. It's going to be pretty competitive. It will be one of those where you find out pretty quick about where we stand. I'm real pleased with both sides, but tomorrow will be the test."


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