Eddins: Fans A Big Part Of Memorable Win

Bret Eddins gives the Auburn fans a lot of credit for the Tigers 34-10 vicotry over Tennessee.

Auburn, Ala.--Bret Eddins has taken part in quite a few memorable Auburn wins in his five years on the Plains and some great road victories as well.

However, the fifth year senior says that Auburn's thrashing of the Vols in Knoxville ranks right up at the top of the list and adds that the fans had a big hand in the 34-10 win. "It's definitely top three on the best road games," Eddins notes. "You go into Tennessee with 107,000 fans. Our fans are great, I don't think you could ever expect to have that kind of fan support that far from home, especially in that kind of hostile environment. But, I think our fans really neutralized their fan support.

"We came out and the defense went three and out and Tony Bell made a great play on the punt," the defensive end continues. "Then, the offense punched it in and it seemed like they were on their heels the rest of the game. The fan support really helps and it was just a lot of fun."

The Auburn faithful showed up in droves early on Saturday and their enthusiasm never let up from early morning until well after the game was over and the celebrations had ended. And, Eddins notes that he has never seen an opposing crowd take over a stadium like that.

"Outside of Vanderbilt I don't think so," Eddins says about seeing the away fans being able to rattle the home team's offense. "We have got great fans. I am still kind of in shock at how loud they were able to be in that stadium. The number we had there and how excited they were. We have got to give a lot of credit to them for this win because they really took their players out of it.

"I am sure their players are used to having their fans on their side the whole game and it seemed like it was about 50-50. So, our fans did a great and we just went out there and tried to execute."

The big defensive end also notes that the Tiger Walk before the game, which was one of the most intense Tiger Walks on the road in Auburn history was really important to the players. "As you are pulling up to the stadium you are trying to get intense, trying to get intense," Eddins explains. "And when you get there we have got such great fans. The band is there. The atmosphere--everything just kind of grows exponentially and it just takes you to that peak that you need to get to before a game and it is able to get you focused and it kind of makes you feel at home even when you are away."

Auburn players left the field to a rousing ovation from the Tiger fans who stayed late on Saturday night.

With a high level of intensity and an unusually loud and boisterous road crowd setting the tone for the game early, Eddins and his teammates were able to settle in and work on putting pressure on Tennessee's freshman quarterbacks.

"We knew that they had a good O-line for pass blocking," Eddins says. "Their quarterbacks are pretty agile, but we knew that if we could make some moves and put some pressure on that they would put some up in the air that our guys could go get. We didn't get as many sacks as we wanted, but we are just going to keep trying to work on that. But, they had a good O-line and we just did what moves we thought would work."

Eddins adds that despite a strong showing from a young and rebuilding defensive through five games there is still a lot of work to be done. "I'd like to say we have come a long way, but I really think we have got a lot farther to go before we get close to our potential," the senior says.

"There are so many little things that we can improve on, from fifth year seniors like myself to first year guys. We can make it that much better of a defense and right now the coaches are working extra hard with us to try and get us to that level where we feel like reaching close to our potential. So, we are just going to work hard every day."

Even though he sees a lot of technique issues that he and his fellow defensive linemen have to work out, there is one aspect of the line that he is very happy with. "It is just sheer effort," Eddins says about what is helping the line play so well despite the little technique problems. "Even when we make little mistakes we are going to try and make up for it.

"A guy takes a wrong step and he is going to lay out trying to get back in his gap," he continues. "And guys are going until they can't and then coming off the field and getting air as quick as they can. You know, even when guys only play 10-15 reps in a game they are going to give 100 percent and the guys who play 50 and 60 reps are going to give 100 percent. That is something that the coaches stress. Regardless of how long you are out there you give great effort and this team is going to be okay. "

As for the other road wins that Eddins thinks rank with his team's most recent victory on Ole Rocky Top, he says they would have to be against Auburn's arch nemesis. "Hopefully we have got a couple of more on the road, I guess," he says with a smile. "But, I guess Alabama winning on the road up in Alabama, probably both of them. 9-0 and 17-7 were both real big wins for us. It is a big rivalry game so regardless of what happens it is going to be a fun game. Those are just games that kind of stick out in your mind, good tough ones against good SEC rivals."

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