Mike Berry, a senior from Brentwood, Tenn., is a returning starter at offensive guard for the Tigers. He sat down with Inside the Auburn Tigers to talk about football and other questions.
Who is your favorite athlete? Who is the player you have to watch or would pay to see play?
"If we're not talking about a particular sport then growing up it would have to be Michael Jordan just like most everybody else. He was just a winner. He came through in clutch. Everybody wants to be a winner. Everybody wanted to ‘Be Like Mike. Then, of course, my name is Mike."
Who is the best player you've played against since you've been at Auburn?
"That's a tough question. I would probably have to say Peria Jerry from Ole Miss. He was really good. He was strong, but yet he was fast. He moved really well for a big guy. He was just an all-around good player."
What is your favorite road trip or favorite road stadium to play in?
"Last season we went to Neyland Stadium and that was pretty awesome because I'm from Tennessee. That was real nice. Arkansas has a good stadium. I really like it. Tennessee was just special for me because everyone just about in Tennessee is a Tennessee fan and they are die hard. It's all you hear about growing up. I put that up there with my biggest accomplishments."
Any significance to your jersey number? Any reason why you wear number 66?
"In high school I wore number 75. I wasn't able to get that coming out of high school. They gave me a list of numbers to choose from and it had 66 on there. My longtime friend Jediah Hogan had that number in high school. I just went with that."
Who is your most talented teammate?
"If we're talking just all-around talent I would say A.J. Greene. I have been knowing him for a while. We went to high school together. He's as talented musically as he is athletically, maybe more than sports actually. If you just name a song he can play it on the piano. He creates music. Usually when I talk to him he's in a little studio they've got. I could definitely see him being a professional musician. I see that happening."
What is it about this coaching staff that stands out and how were the coaches able to pull things together in such a short time?
"They are very family oriented. They are players' coaches. They look out for their players. That's one thing that puts them over all the other coaches I've had. They actually care and that's rare that you find that. Don't get me wrong, they want to win. Who doesn't want to win. You've got to win to keep your job, but they actually show us some interest. They actually care."
What's the one game on the schedule you want to win more than any other?
"That goes without saying. It has to be Alabama. It's just big. We're in the same state. It's our biggest rival. That's definitely it especially because they've won the last two years. They are coming off a national championship. It would be good to ruin the little parade they've got going."
Mike Berry goes into his senior season with 21 career starts for the Tigers.
Being from outside the state of Alabama, how long did it take you at Auburn to realize the rivalry was everything you heard it was?
"It doesn't take long. You see it during recruiting how big it is. People don't play when it comes to Auburn and Alabama. I grew up watching Tennessee. I really didn't know too much about the rivalry. During recruiting in came to the Auburn-Alabama game. That's bragging rights for the whole year. It gives people something to go to work with and something to talk about."
When you look back on your time at Auburn to this point what is your favorite memory about Auburn?
"I think the Outback Bowl was kind of big. Just going into two and three overtimes and having to really push through some things, it didn't come easy. It was very hard. It reminded me of my Auburn experience. We've gone through a lot since I've been here, but we just keep pushing. That gave us a lot of momentum heading into this year."