Chizik "My Man," Former Auburn Star Says

Former Auburn football star Carlos Rogers went about 1,000 miles out of his way to show support for Gene Chizik.

Auburn, Ala.--Carlos Rogers was smiling on Monday as his college position coach took center stage on the podium being introduced as the new head football coach of Auburn Tigers.

The former All-American cornerback said he was excited to be back in Auburn to see the announcement of Gene Chizik as head coach of the Tigers.

"I am happy and am I proud," said Rogers, who flew into Auburn following his Sunday game playing for the NFL's Washington Redskins. "Like I tell everybody, that's my guy, he's my man, he's my coach. He is like a father figure to me. I am proud of him. Auburn picked the right person for the job."

Rogers says he wanted to make the trip to Auburn to be supportive of Chizik, whose hiring has received mixed reviews from Auburn fans because of Chizik's 5-19 record in two years as head coach at Iowa State.

"Anything I can do to help I want to do," said Rogers, who was the winner of the 2004 Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back when he was coached by Chizik, who handled the defensive backs in addition to being defensive coordiantor for the Tigers. "I want people to realize that he is the right man for the job."

Gene Chizik talks with Carlos Rogers (right) after Chizik was formally introduced as head coach of the Tigers.

Commenting on what attributes that Chizik brings in his return to Auburn that will help him as a head coach, Rogers says, "Most of all just his passion, his will to win, his will to get better." He adds, "If you get on his program and stick with his program, it is going to be better."

Rogers notes he is sorry that Tommy Tuberville is out as head coach of the Tigers. "I was cool with Tommy, too. I had a great relationship with him. At first when I heard he was getting fired or resigning, ‘it can't be happening.' Once I heard it became true, I didn't like it."

Rogers said that Auburn's new football coach is more than just an X's and O's guy. "He's a good man outside of football," the NFL player contends. "He is a good person to be around."

Washington quarterback Jason Campbell was also at Auburn when Chizik was defensive coordinator. They were both part of the unbeaten 2004 team along with Rogers.

"Jason and I talked about it," Rogers said. "He said he is a worthy man for the job. Jason is wondering who they are going to bring in for offensive coordinator. He wants Coach (Al) Borges to come back. We didn't talk much about it. I was on the road when we found out about Coach Chizik. We will talk more about it when I get back."

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