Winning Week For AU Football Commitments

An update on the senior seasons of the Tigers' football commitments for the class of 2006 is featured.

Auburn, Ala.—For the first time this season it was wins across the board for the seven early Auburn football commitments who were in action over the weekend as the players who have pledged to sign with the Tigers in February were able to help lead their teams to big victories on Friday night with strong performances.

The commitment, who said he was just excited to finally be back on the football field this weekend, made a pretty big impact in a short period of time.

Hendrick Leverette and his Oak Grove teammates had been forced to sit out the last two weeks of action due to the lingering effects of Hurricane Katrina in Hattiesburg, Miss., but got back to action on Friday night against South Jones and quickly proved that the time away from the field was not detrimental to their game.

Oak Grove put up 35 points in the first quarter on their way to a huge 52-6 win and Leverette and his fellow starters only got to see action in that first quarter. However, he was still able to rack up 50 rushing yards and a touchdown on seven carries and record five tackles on defense in only 12 minutes of action.

The only Tigers' quarterback commitment playing at this time is Steven Ensminger, and the athletic prospect had a strong showing through the air and on the ground Friday night in leading his West Monroe team to a big 46-28 win over St. Amant.

Ensminger was solid through the air completing 8-14 passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns and also added to the Rebels' effort on the ground by rushing for 31 yards and a score on five carries.

Steven Ensminger has been improving his play each week during his senior season for his new team.

AU running back commitment Benjamin Tate, who is only playing in his second game this week due to a later start to the high school season in Maryland, had a monster performance in week one and followed it up with a another great effort in week two.

Tate, who led his team to a tight 19-14 win over Easton High, rushed for 213 yards and two scores on 15 carries. Through two games that talented back has carried the ball 19 times for 341 yards, which is an astonishing 17.9 yards per carry average, and three scores on the ground. He also has a receiving TD and an interception return for a TD.

Big defensive lineman Bart Eddins just keeps on plugging up the middle for his Trinity team and the Wildcats just keep on winning. They have now won 45 straight regular season games.

The defensive tackle prospect recorded five tackles in the 25-8 win over Daleville with one for a loss (a safety) and he also recovered a fumble. For the year, Eddins has recorded 23 stops, three sacks, forced two fumbles and recovered a fumble.

Another defensive commitment was able to help lead his team to its first win of the season on Friday night. Charles Henderson cornerback Zaccheus Etheridge intercepted a pass and also scored a rushing touchdown for the Trojans in a 42-6 win over Greenville. The win was huge for a team that had really struggled in its first two games of the season and could provide some momentum for the remainder of the schedule.

Wide receiver commit Chris Slaughter was also instrumental in helping to lead his Peach County team to its first win of the season. The Trojans laid 55 points on Southwest High and rolled to a 55-6 win to move to 1-3.

Slaughter's position coach, Bruce Mackey, notes that his star receiver has had to make a big impact on special teams and serve as a decoy due to all of the attention he has been getting this season. "They are playing nine man defense just so that they can always have two guys following him," Mackey explains. "They even send two guys with him when we send him in motion and I have never seen anything like that in my 14 years of coaching."

Chris Slaughter has been labeled as a marked man by opposing defenses this fall.

Despite the overwhelming attention from the Southwest defense, Slaughter was able to make his touches count on Friday. He only caught two passes, but was able to rack up 70 yards and a TD on those touches. He was also stellar in the return game for the Trojans where he had a 46-yard kickoff return, a 48-yard punt return and a 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

The Tigers' most recent commitment, wide receiver Alex Rose from First Coast High in Jascksonville, Fla., has recorded over 60 receiving yards and 100 yards on reverses through four games of his senior season despite also being a point of focus for opposing defenses.

The Buccaneers are 2-2, which includes a 42-0 win over Fernandina Beach High this weekend.

The other three Tiger commitments Greg Smith, Mario Fannin and Neil Caudle were not in action over the weekend.

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