Auburn Football: What Tigers Must Do to Turn Around Season
After an 0-2 start to the season, Auburn must go back to the drawing board to avoid disaster.
The Tigers are only two years removed from an undefeated season and a national championship, but the current version does not resemble that squad at all. Something needs to change before the bulk of the SEC season comes. Otherwise, Auburn will be on its way to a second losing season in five years.
These are the key adjustments that must be made in the next few weeks:
Give Kiehl Frazier One More Chance
The starting quarterback has simply not gotten the job done over the first two games. Frazier was responsible for five turnovers against Mississippi State and has completed less than half of his passes this season.
Coach Gene Chizik has stayed firm in the fact that the sophomore will remain the starting quarterback. Unfortunately, there will have to come a time where he decides that Frazier is not the best man for the job.
Clint Moseley made his mistakes last season, but he is a more accurate passer and has a steadiness that the team needs right now. If Frazier struggles against a Louisiana-Monroe team that just defeated Arkansas, Moseley needs to get the call.
Get the Run Game Going
Clemson might have come out on top in Week 1, but Auburn found a strength with the rushing attack. Tre Mason and Onterio McCalebb combined for 188 yards on 26 carries and helped keep Clemson's offense off the field.
Against Mississippi State, the two rushers were only given eight carries apiece while Mike Blakely led the team with 11 carries. No one could get going in the 28-10 defeat, but they have to make sure they get the ball to the more talented runners.
Mason and McCalebb have averaged over five yards per carry in every year of their careers. They should be given plenty of opportunities to shine while taking pressure off the quarterback.
Stop the Run
Both Clemson and Mississippi State were able to control Auburn based on the ability to run the football. With Sammy Watkins not able to play, Clemson running back Andre Ellington totaled 228 yards on the ground.
The Bulldogs were also able to get 166 rushing yards against Auburn. Four different players were able to get a rush of over 10 yards. Just imagine what will happen when the Tigers have to face the rushing attacks of LSU and Alabama.
Auburn's front line needs to get better in the trenches and the linebackers need to wrap up their tackles. Whether the scheme must change or the players, something needs to be done to avoid this type of result in future games.
Gene Chizik has not had a losing season since joining Auburn in 2009, but the squad is in danger of having one of the school's worst years in a long time.
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