Auburn Football: Winners and Losers from Week 12 Game vs. Alabama A&M

Jonathan IrwinContributor IINovember 19, 2012

Auburn Football: Winners and Losers from Week 12 Game vs. Alabama A&M

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    Auburn's 2012 football season hasn't been amazing, but from Gene Chizik to Tre Mason, there were plenty of winners and losers from their Week 12 win over Alabama A&M.

    Coming off a tough loss to Georgia, this was the kind of game Auburn needed.

    Here are some of the biggest winners and losers in this matchup between the Tigers and Bulldogs.

Winner: Gene Chizik

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    WIth Auburn at 2-8 coming into Week 12 and Alabama looming ahead, Gene Chizik needed a win, especially with all the speculation that Chizik's job could certainly be on the line come the end of the season.

    While chances are Chizik will be canned at the end of the season, a loss to an FCS team—such as Alabama A&M—would have certainly sealed the deal.

    After their dominating 51-7 win, Auburn is now 3-8, giving Chizik something to hold onto—whether it means keeping his current job, or padding his resume for the next.

Loser: Jonathan Wallace

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    For a freshman, Jonathan Wallace has had some solid games under center. But he's yet to really wow anyone, and that continued in this one.

    The Tiger's quarterback completed 10 of 18 passes for just 171 yards and one touchdown.

    It was Wallace's second start in a row in which he failed to average more than 10 yards per pass. He's yet to pass for more than 200 yards in a game, with only one multi-touchdown start.

    Facing lesser competition, Wallace should have been able to have a bit more of a showing.

Winner: Auburn's Run Defense

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    While Auburn has struggled on both sides of the ball, defense has been a huge issue.

    Auburn entered Week 12 with the 88th ranked rush defense in the FBS, allowing nearly 200 yards per game on the ground. That's not good when you play in a run heavy conference with Alabama (209.4 rushing yards per game) coming up.

    But the Tigers had their best showing of the season, holding the Bulldogs to a mere 22 yards on the ground. They added two sacks for good measure.

    Needless to say, this was a standout performance for this Auburn defense.

Loser: Auburn's Poise

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    Auburn had dumb penalties in this game and they had no reason to lose their poise.

    The Tigers had 11 penalties for 79 yards. It was their second 70-plus penalty yard game in three weeks and their fourth 50-plus yard game of the season.

    At one point in the game, Auburn committed back-to-back false start penalties, and they had a touchdown brought back on a holding call during another sequence.

    In a close game against a tougher team, these things would have been a game killer for the Tigers.

Winner: Tre Mason

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    Without any standouts on offense, Auburn needed someone to take the reigns in this one.

    If anyone did that, it was Tre Mason. Despite only two 100-plus yards on the season—and only one multi-touchdown game—Mason exploded against the Bulldogs.

    The sophomore back finished his day with 181 yards on 12 carries with two touchdowns.