There hasn’t been a seat hotter this season than Gene Chizik’s place as Auburn’s head coach. After the Tigers horrible defeat to its instate rival Alabama, 49-0, it sounds like Chizik sees the writing on the wall that his time is up as coach.
From Al.com, in his post game press conference, Chizik wouldn’t address his job status with the university saying, “I'm not going to entertain any of those questions.”
However, when asked about his team’s lackluster performance in the Iron Bowl if he could still make a case to keep his job, Chizik said to reporters, "I don't have to make a case. Y'all saw what y'all saw out there."
What was the most telling thing from Chizik’s postgame comments was what he said about how fans and alumni should feel after getting embarrassed in its biggest game of the season saying:
"That was a very disappointing and embarrassing loss to our instate rival. It was a sad performance," Chizik said. "The Auburn fans and alumni don't deserve that, but they got that tonight.
He also called it "a very poor performance."
The postgame comments came after Alabama put a stake into the coffin that was Auburn’s 3-9 season. The Tigers offense could only muster a total of 183 yards on offense, with an abysmal 71 passing yards.
Auburn turned the ball over three times, its defense allowed 483 total yards to the Crimson Tide, converted only four of 12 third downs and committed eight penalties for 77 yards.
How could Auburn keep Chizik as head coach?
At halftime the game was already out of hand with Alabama leading 42-0.
If there’s any shining light on how the season ended for Auburn and Chizik, it's that they won two of their last four games. However, both of those wins came against non-conference opponents with one of those teams, New Mexico State, owning a 1-10 record.
According to ABC3340.com, if Auburn is to relieve Chizik of his duties, the university will be on the hook for a $7.5 million buyout which will be paid over the next three years.
From what it sounds like in Chizik’s postgame comments, he may be willing to accept a buyout after embarrassing the Tigers’ fanbase, alumni and anyone else who’s connected to the university.
Chizik’s summed up a horrendous 2012 season that saw the Tigers go winless in SEC play by saying, "We went south collectively as a team."
The university cannot fire an entire program in the wake of a disappointing season. However, it can and possibly will let go the person in charge—Chizik.