Smith Looking Forward to SEC Opener

Auburn, Ala.--Junior tailback Tre Smith had plenty of reasons be disappointed following Auburn"s season-opening loss to Georgia Tech on Saturday.

To go along with the Tigers' 15-game winning streak being snapped, Smith rushed for only 51 yards on 13 carries in his first game to be the featured back since rushing for 126 yards on 25 carries against Alabama in 2002.

However, Smith and the rest of the Tigers continue to be upbeat as they prepare for their SEC home opener against Mississippi State on Saturday at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

"We're going to put this one behind us," the redshirt junior says of the 23-14 loss. "We're already looking forward to Mississippi State. I haven't really been thinking about this (Georgia Tech) game much.

"Everything is great," he adds. "We're all coming out with great attitude now. Everybody's coming out harder in practice and our tempo is a lot better than it was. I think the team realizes that we need to come out and start out a little faster."

Tre Smith carries the football vs. Georgia Tech in a 23-14 setback for the Tigers.

Back in 2003 when Auburn had high preseason expectations, only lose the season-opener at home to USC, the Tigers fell into a downward spiral and also lost the second game of the year and finished at 8-5. Smith says that the 2005 Auburn Tigers are a different team and an early season SEC game should help with the emotions of last week's loss.

"This could kick-start our team, kick everybody in the butt and get us going," he says of Saturday's matchup against the Bulldogs of Mississippi State. "Everybody should be ready for this one."

Facing Mississippi State, Smith says that he believes the running backs will have a larger role in the offense against a less aggressive defense than they faced last Saturday. He also notes that even though the Tigers are off to a 0-1 start, the team's main goals are still intact.

"Our number one goal every year is to go to Atlanta," he says. "This is our first step toward that and everyone has been practicing real good and that's what we're looking forward to. You can't be looking back on last year or looking forward to next week. You've got to go one game at a time."

Kickoff for game number two of the 2005 season against the Bulldogs is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. CST and will be aired on JP Sports.

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