Mixed Reviews for Tigers From Tuberville

Comments from Auburn's head football coach are featured as his Tigers improved to 4-0.

Auburn, Ala--Tommy Tuberville liked his team's second half improvement, the kicking game and the chance to play backups in Auburn's 38-7 victory over Buffalo.

However, Auburn's head football coach gave the performance mixed reviews because Auburn didn't take control of the contest until the third quarter against the visitors from the Mid-American Conference.

Auburn played some substitutes in the first three quarters, but didn't make wholesale changes until the fourth period. Tuberville admitted he would have liked to play the backups sooner.

"We would have liked to," he said. "It was basically their offense. We couldn't get them off the field. They did a good job. They ball-controlled and did a few things we hadn't seen. I thought we adjusted well at halftime.

"They have a pretty good team," he said of Coach Turner Gill's Bulls. "They made some improvement. I was impressed with what they did and their defense.

"Again, we didn't didn't do a whole lot," Tuberville said. "We played a lot of base defense. I think we had two blitzes the first half. When you don't do a whole lot, for us, as small as we are, you tend to stay on the field for quite a long time."

On the plus side, Tuberville liked what he saw with his kickers. John Vaughn nailed a 46-yard field goal with room to spare. Matt Clark put every kickoff into the end zone and none were returned. Kody Bliss averaged 50.3 yards on his three punts.

"Matt Clark was excellent," he said. "John's field goal was good right before half and gave us a 10-point lead. Kody continued to boom them. Our kicking game is in good shape.

"We have to get a little better on the punt return team. Our kickoff return looked good today. We almost broke a couple. On our punt return, we will make a few more adjustments. Robert (sophomore Robert Dunn) is getting closer. He is kind of understanding how to give ground and do a little bit more after he catches the ball."

After leading just 10-0 at halftime, Auburn scored 28 points in the second half to take control. The offense really stepped up its play in the second half.

"We just stayed on our blocks longer," said Tuberville, who noted the Tigers also wore them down second in the half.

The coach added, "We came out and played with a little bit more emotion the second half. You can't go out there and play with it every week. You can't talk about it all the time. Next week will be a week where we will have to play at a higher level earlier and try to play all the way through."


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