Auburn Commit Looking For Big Senior Season

Comments from an Auburn commitments high school coach and the prospect are featured.

Marietta, Ga.—Auburn football recruiting is off to fast start for the class of 2009 with nine verbal commitments for the Tigers prior to the start of the summer camp season.

One of Auburn's most recent commitments, tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen, is rated as the No. 7 prospect in the country at his position.

"The unique thing about Philip is that he doesn't need a lot of attention," Lassiter High School head coach Chip Lindsey says of how Lutzenkirchen has handled the recruiting process. "He's not that. He's not caught up in it. I think if he was, he would not commit as early because he would take his visits and go through the hoopla of recruiting.

"He's the kind of kid that has a level head, knows what he wants and he's found what he wants to do," Lindsey says. "I'm excited for him and I think he'll do really well.

"He's quiet and reserved," Lindsey continues. "He's got a sense of humor that a lot of people never see. He's just your All-American type. He comes from a great family, his mom and dad have done an outstanding job with him. He's sort of everything you look for in a player and the big thing is that we want to have a good year and do a good job with him and make sure he has as good of a year as he can have. Going ahead and committing is going to take a lot of pressure off him."

Lindsey won multiple Alabama state championships as offensive coordinator at Hoover High School prior to taking over the head coaching duties at Lassiter High, where he installed the Tony Franklin System this spring.

"Most of the time he'll be flexed, but we will attach him some as a traditional tight end in a three-point stance," Lindsey explains. "We're going to line him up in a variety of ways.

"We're going to have to be smart and not line him up in one place all of the time so people can really lock him down. I think also we've got some new guys that have come out and some other kids that are really going to relieve some pressure off Philip. If you run this offense the right way, it's really hard to single in on one guy."

Lutzenkirchen played linebacker and defensive end earlier in his prep career, but he'll be used exclusively on offense as a senior, according to the head coach.

"We're going to try to not play anybody both ways," Lindsey explains. "We need our numbers to stay up and kids know now that if you come out for football then you're going to get an opportunity to play. There's not going to be a circle of 100 guys watching 22 guys practice. We're going to sort of let everybody get involved."

Aside from Auburn, Lutzenkirchen also took a hard look at Clemson, where his parents have a lake house, Georgia Tech, which is only about 30 minutes from home, and Stanford, where the academic reputation was a big draw. However, the lake house was the biggest factor keeping Lutzenkirchen interested in the ACC Tigers. Georgia Tech was perhaps too close, while Stanford was too far away.

Another factor was the Tony Franklin System, which was a huge plus for Auburn, as was the two-hour drive.

"That was definitely a big factor, too–not having to learn any new offense or new plays," Lutzenkirchen says.

He would have likely played defense for the Yellow Jackets if he had picked Tech. "Either way I just wanted to be an impact for the team, whether it was offense or defense," the tight end says. "The situation I was in with at Auburn where we run the exact same stuff, that sort of put an edge over Georgia Tech. And being able to have a relatively short drive to be able to go home when I want to, it's definitely going to be a good thing to be able to go home and get a home-cooked meal."

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