If it’s possible to lose and still gain respect, then AU successfully completed that task Friday.
Auburn lost a thriller 26—21 to heated rival Alabama and brought an AU crowd to their feet for sixty minutes, gaining some much needed pride and respect to a team that was dismantled by the Tide in 2008.
Pushed to the limit and outplayed most of the game, No. 2 Alabama found its championship form just in time.
Auburn out gained Alabama 332—291 and dominated on the ground 151—73.
Virtually every sports writer in the State of Alabama picked the Tide to blow out the Tigers. In fact,CBS analyst Tony Barnhart announced that even after a 14—14 half time tie, the Tigers would be double digit losers.
Every Auburn Tiger fan should now realize that Coach Gene Chizik indeed has the Tigers on the right path.
Even with the tremendous lack of depth, the Tigers managed to outplay the Tide, eliminating RB Mark Ingram's chances to claim Alabama's first Heisman trophy. The Auburn defense limited RB Mark Ingram to just 32 yards on 16 carries.
No need for excuses in this one. The Tigers made a few costly mistakes that ultimately cost them the game. There’s little room for error when playing a defense as good as Alabama. Costly turnovers and field position ultimately lost this one for the Tigers.
AU fans should realize the future is bright. With a couple of good recruiting classes, AU will be right back in the hunt for an SEC title. Despite the 7—5 final record the Tigers showed they are vastly improved over the '08 Tigers.
Don’t be surprised to see the Tigers' bowl game stock go up after this game. Congratulations Tigers on a fine season. Enjoy the respect you will now receive. You earned it.