Irons Sees Room for Improve Despite Big Game

Kenny Irons talks about his big night vs. Washington State.

Auburn, Ala.--The head coaches and probably about all the 87,451 fans in Jordan-Hare Stadium were impressed on Saturday night by Kenny Irions, but the Auburn senior Irons notes that he isn't sure he opened the season with his true "A" game as his Auburn Tigers defeated Washington State.

Say what?

If 184 rushing yards on 20 carries, plus 40 more as a receiver, isn't good enough for "A" game designation Auburn opponents need to beware of the hard-charging senior tailback in weeks to come.

"I had the butterflies and everything and my legs felt kind of weak and I just didn't feel right," Irons says. "I didn't feel that strength. Going into that second quarter, I started feeling good about myself. Then in the second half it was there."

His "weak start" included a 42-yard run on Auburn's first offensive play of the 2006 season. His second half start was even more impressive. He raced 58 yards for a touchdown.

Kenny Irons is off to a good start on his bid to earn All-SEC and All-America honors.

"Coach (Eddie) Gran, Coach (Al) Borges and Coach Tubs (Tommy Tuberville) always preach we have to come out fast whether it is the first half or the second half," Irons says. "We came out fast and let them know we couldn't be stopped.

"We have a powerhouse offense and great offensive line," he adds. "Tim Duckworth is a great offensive lineman. With Joe Cope, Ben Grubbs, Jonathan Palmer and King Dunlap up front we have guys who can get the job done. It makes it easier for myself, Brad (Lester), Tre (Smith) and Carl (Stewart) to run the ball."

Commenting on Irons, Washington State head coach Bill Doba notes he is impressed. The same is true of Robb Akey, the WSU defensive coordinator. "He is as good as he is billed," Akey says. "He is a damn good back. He has my Heisman vote."

Irons says he was impressed with the intensity the Cougars of the Pac-10 played with on Saturday night, but notes that "they talked a lot of trash." He says that led him to slow down on his touchdown run to start the third quarter. "That wasn't very classy of me," he says. "But you have guys who are talking a lot of trash and there is only so much you can take going into all four quarters of the game. At a certain point it gets under your skin."

Irons says despite the good all-around performance in the opener, his team has work to do. "It was a great win to start the season. We have to pick it up though. We need to get better each week. We can still play better."

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