The (Not So) Surprising Double Standard For Auburn Tigers Recruiting
For the last couple of years, the top five recruiting classes have been known to be powerhouses who are more than likely guaranteed major success in the upcoming season. This year, the list looks to be on track as usual.
The general consensus seems to be the fact that Auburn cracking the top five is merely a fluke. A sheep in wolf's clothing. An ace of spades acting as a wild card.
You get it.
I want to apologize to Florida, Texas, Alabama, and Oklahoma. Please forgive the Tigers for crowding the line of offseason success. Hey, those stars don't really mean anything anyway. I mean, they have zero significance for Auburn. Those recruits can't possibly know what they're doing. What kid with talent picks a school with exciting coaches and a family atmosphere? It's just silly.
Yes, Gene Chizik has an incentive-laden contract. Sure, he led Auburn to a winning season in his first year, but looks can be deceiving. And let's not forget the confidence that he and his staff instilled in the same group of young men that embarrassed themselves the year before he arrived. Nope, there's no way anyone would want to come and play for that school.
Now, I can't say I don't completely understand why the masses are confused. Auburn hasn't been a major contender since the mid-Aughts and they have been known lately to shoot themselves in the foot more often than not. But is it really that ridiculous for them to want to join in and play with the big boys again?
I wish someone would tell me when Auburn became the Vanderbilt of the West. Sorry, Vandy.
Recruiting is as much a game to be won and lost as the one that is played on the field. If a team shows they have no desire to try and win with the best, how can they try and be the best?
Auburn has been hanging in there on Rivals for quite some time, but now that they look like they could actually stay there...some people are crying foul.
Even Lane Kiffin avoided questioning before certain things came to light in Tennessee. His eyes said it all.
Although a team like Auburn has tradition, it's a quiet one compared to the likes of Alabama and Florida. Unless, of course, you're a true fan who knows the difference between the mascot and the war cry. I can't tell you how much unnecessary time that takes out of my day.
When I hear comments from the opposition just waiting for the NCAA to investigate how Auburn has gained attention from top recruits, I can't help but wonder what makes them different than everyone else.
The bias that comes along with recruiting is disconcerting at best. If your team gains the best class, it means you're on your way to becoming a champion. If a team you loathe more than your mother-in-law looks like they have a chance, the system immediately becomes a joke.
For those of you so concerned that Auburn might actually compete this year, don't worry...another meaningless list we should expect around August will take care of that.
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