Better Days Ahead For The Auburn Tigers?

Dione ThriftContributor IDecember 3, 2009

AUBURN, AL - NOVEMBER 27:  Mario Fannin #27 of the Auburn Tigers against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Jordan-Hare Stadium on November 27, 2009 in Auburn, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The regular season is over and the Auburn Tigers are 7-5.  The Tigers are bowl eligible with new coach Gene Chizik, and they are hoping to bring their record to 8-5. 

A few good things happened for the Tigers this season.  The Tiger offense is ranked 20th in the nation in total offense and third in the SEC, which is a big improvement from last year's team.  Sources are also saying that Auburn will be in the Outback bowl, which is impressive for the Tigers considering they didn't go bowling last year.

Did I mention that Gene Chizik is the first Auburn coach to take his team to a bowl game in their first year?

A few bad things happened for the Tigers as well.  Auburn fans will probably all agree that depth was the number one problem with the Tigers.  When the season started, Auburn was reported to have 75 scholarship players.  The offense didn't seem to suffer from the lack of depth but the defense did.  Needless to say, Auburn's defense didn't have a good solid year.  In the Iron Bowl, only three linebackers played the entire game.

Did I mention penalties got the Tigers as well?

What will it take for Auburn to be better in 2010? Starting Quarterback, Chris Todd, and lead rusher Ben Tate are graduating, along with Antonio Coleman and Walter McFadden.  But Darvin Adams, Terell Zachery, most of the offensive line, and most of the defense will be back. 

Auburn will be hoping to get a few injured players back such as Aairon Savage, Mike McNeil, and hopefully Zac Etheridge can make a recovery. The Tigers are hoping to bring in a top 10 recruiting class and they're well on their way to making that happen.

One thing is for sure, this 2009 team proved to be a much different team from the 2008 team. Coach Chizik definitely has the team turned around and believing in themselves and their school.