Speaking at a Chick-fil-A Bowl function, the Auburn head football coach said, "We pretty much limit it to about 10 practices for a bowl game." He noted that when he was an assistant coach at the University of Miami the Hurricanes had 32 practices prior to a bowl game and "we played horrible."
Tuberville said he believes keys to be successful on the bowl trips are highly focused practices that don't drag on for too long causing the players to become bored. The coach said he wants to make sure his players have a good time on the bowl trip so the underclassmen will work hard to want to go on bowl trips in following years.
With the long layoff between the final regular season game and the bowl game, which is New Year's Eve in Auburn's case, Tuberville said, "They are going to make some mistakes." Keeping the number of those mistakes to a minimum will be a big factor in determining the winner, he added.
Clemson coach Tommy Bowden agreed with Tuberville that making sure the players enjoy the bowl trip will be a high priority for the CU staff.
Auburn and Clemson will square off at 6:30 p.m. CST on Dec. 31st at the soldout Georgia Dome. Chick-fil-A bowl officials on Thursday noted that they are thrilled with the high demand for tickets to the game. Both Auburn and Clemson need more tickets to fill the demand, which has also been high in the Atlanta market, bowl officials told Inside the Auburn Tigers.
Auburn Football Notes: Tuberville joked at the Thursday luncheon that Tristan Davis can't get through a metal detector after having surgery twice on his foot this season. The tailback and kickoff returner will play in the bowl game, but won't be full speed until spring training, the coach noted...Both Tuberville and Bowden were asked about the constant scrutiny, second-guessing and criticism that high-profile coaches like themselves face. Bowden said he learned a long time ago to develop a "thick skin" growing up with Bobby Bowden as his father. He said that during the season he works in a "cave environment" with his focus on his job, not what is being said about his football team...With Auburn changing coordinators, replacing Al Borges and his West Coast Offense with Tony Franklin and his version of the spread attack, Bowden said his defense will prepare for plays from both offensive systems. Bowden noted that he won't be surprised to see a good bit of Franklin's influence show up in the bowl game despite Tuberville's comments to look for the Tigers to stick with much of the same plays they ran during the regular season.
Commenting on the Auburn defense, Bowden said that from watching video of AU the quality of the front four caught his eye. "I think their success starts there and they are very active in the secondary and with the linebackers. They challenge throws from a scheme standpoint. They are a contact team and very aggressive. They don't mind hitting."...The Clemson head coach said Auburn's three true freshmen offensive line starters have also caught his eye as being talented players. Tackles Lee Ziemba and Ryan Pugh earned Freshman All-SEC honors as did guard Chaz Ramsey.