Tuberville Sees Consistency From Offense

Tommy Tuberville talks about Auburns second football scrimmage of the preseason.

Auburn, Ala.--The second scrimmage of the preseason is usually a true test of a college football team heading into a new season. Saturday the Auburn Tigers got together for scrimmage number two at Jordan-Hare Stadium. With solid play out of quarterbacks Chris Todd and Kodi Burns as well as running back Ben Tate, Coach Tommy Tuberville said all in all it was a good day for his team offensively.

"There were probably more big plays last week and it was more of a grind today working it down the field," Tuberville said. "The offense did have some consistency and that's what I like. They were more consistent.

"Brad (Brad Lester) didn't play. Tristan (Tristan Davis) didn't play. Ben did play and I would say off the top of my head got 10-12 carries, which he needed to get this week...he looked pretty good running the ball today but we all looked slow. It looked like we all had ankle weights on."

With the focus on the starting quarterback position as well as several other spots on the field, Tuberville said right now the Tigers will try to correct mistakes made in Saturday's scrimmage and begin to fine-tune the offense and defense heading into the first week of classes. While many spots look to be locked down at the moment, Tuberville said there won't be a finalized depth chart until likely the week of the season opener against Louisiana-Monroe.

"We'll have one probably Tuesday or Wednesday of game week," Tuberville said. "We're going to look at a lot of different guys. We'll have to make some decisions because there are not many hardships any more. If you play them they are done. We want to make sure any of the younger guys we play, that it's going to be worth it. There are some battles at a lot of positions. We'll have to grade this film first and see if anybody made any movement."

Defensively, the Tigers played without several projected starters as tackle Sen'Derrick Marks was held out because of a strained knee muscle. Cornerback Walter McFadden was also held out after getting banged up over the course of the week. Tuberville said even without several key players he thought the defense performed better in some areas.

"We tackled a little bit better, but when you're trying to tackle Frenchie (Philip Pierre-Louis) it's pretty tough. He's going to be exciting to watch. He'll make you look bad in one-on-one (situations). It's good that we see someone like that in the open field--not just the young guys, but everybody was trying to take a dead bead on him. He's going to make a lot of people do tackling drills the next week if he can stay healthy."

One player who did make some plays on defense was fellow freshman cornerback Harry Adams. Picking off a Barrett Trotter pass when he jumped an underneath receiver, Tuberville said Adams would have likely been off to the races on the play if they had not blown it dead.

"He made a nice interception but we blew the whistle," Tuberville said. "He probably could have run it back. When I saw him get to the sideline we didn't want to embarrass the offensive linemen trying to chase him. He made a good play."

Without Marks up front the Tigers got a solid day out of backup Jake Ricks as well as Antoine Carter and Michael Goggans from the defensive end positions. Tuberville said he was pleased with the push he got from the edge on the defensive line.

"There were some pretty good tipped balls," Tuberville said. "I thought our defensive line got a better pass rush today from the corners. We looked a little quicker out there. We just looked a little sluggish in some areas. We knew that was going to happen."

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Reggie Hunt

Every year there is an extra scholarship open Tuberville had made a point to reward a deserving walk-on with a scholarship for the season. This year current safety and former quarterback Jonathan Vickers got the news. Tuberville said Vickers will help the Tigers this season as a backup in the secondary and also on special teams...Tuberville had good news on Bart Eddins' injury as he had an MRI done and it was just a bruise. Tuberville said Eddins told him he would be back Tuesday, but the coach said Thursday or Friday was more like it...Still no word on signee Reggie Hunt from Daphne. Tuberville said the coaches called all day on Friday to no avail. He said they are supposed to hear on Monday and that's when it needs to be done with school starting on that day. Tuberville added they've got Hunt ready to go if they get the call that he's cleared.

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