Tuberville Sees Benefits of Academic Success

Auburn, Ala.--Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville says he spent more time than normal on the road during the May evaluation period for checking out prospects for his team's 2007 signee class.

In addition to getting a feel for who the top high school senior players will be this fall, the coach says he has received a significant amount of positive feedback on the football program's emphasis on having success in the classroom as well as on the football field.

The most recent recognition was an 2006 Academic Achievement Award from the American Football Coaches Association. Auburn was the only Southeastern Conference program to be honored by the AFCA. Overall, 29 football programs across the nation were honored for their graduation rates.

"That is a nice honor and more recognition is good for our program," says Tuberville, who is a member of the association's board of directors.

The AFCA award is based on the freshman class from the academic year of 2000-2001, including those who enrolled at that time but who did not receive financial aid until after their first year, or who transferred from another institution and later received a scholarship.

Earlier this year the NCAA announced that Auburn's football program had the highest academic progress rate of any public Division I BCS football program in the nation. Auburn was honored along with three private institutions--Boston College, Stanford and Duke for being at the tp of the academic progress rate listing. The NCAA figures are based on 2003-2004 and the 2004-2005 academic years.

Tuberville says he enjoys seeing players, coaches and administrators work together to make sure athletes in the AU program are taking of advantage of what he says is a tremendous opportunity to gain a college education.

"Auburn is a difficult university academically and it is important that we give our athletes the support they need to be successful," he says. "We are going to continue to work hard in that area.

"I give a lot of credit to the players because they are the ones doing the work," he says. "I am proud of what they are doing."

Tuberville says he expects a significant portion of the 2006 team's senior class to have their degrees completed prior to the start of the season and more should be ready to graduate in December.

The coach also notes that players who are organized and motivated to have success in the classroom normally arrive at football practice with the same attitude, which is a major plus for team.

2006 Inside the Auburn Tigers Auburn Football Guide

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