Schedule Breakdown: We will learn early if Auburn’s secondary is improved under the new 4-2-5 scheme. Last year Auburn’s secondary did not have even ONE interception. Washington State is entering year two under pass happy ex-Texas Tech coach Mike Leach. Given the depth of talent that Auburn has, they should handle Washington State and Arkansas State fairly easy. The Mississippi State game is pivotal to Auburn’s season. The fractured minds of young Auburn players can get a much needed boost by defeating their first SEC opponent in over a year. A loss here could forecast a season that falls off the rails fast. The following week Auburn plays LSU. The Mississippi State, Ole Miss, and Tennessee games will be the best indicators as to if Auburn will have a successful 2013 season or not.
Summary: After what is possibly the most disappointing season in school history, Auburn returns the offensive guru from their 2010 National Championship as their new head coach. The last time Gus Malzahn’s offense was on the plains the Tigers averaged over 41 points per game. That offense was lead by Heisman trophy winner Cam Newton. In trying to rekindle that feeling of having a spark plug, Malzahn brings in Jr. College transfer Nick Marshall to be his projected starting QB. Think of him as more Denard Robinson (quick and erratic) than Cam Newton. If you need an indication of Marshall’s talent, he was a starting cornerback for UGA as a true freshman. On defense Malzahn has hired Ellis Johnson to implement a 4-2-5 scheme. After having one of the worst defenses in 2012, Auburn brought in 3 Jr. College players and 5-star recruit Montravius Adams, whom they are hoping can make immediate impacts. This will be one of the hardest teams to project. Auburn’s squad is littered with 4 and 5-star recruits but based off recent seasons, predicting a post New Year’s bowl game would be unwise.
Locked in Wins: Washington State, Arkansas State, Western Carolina, Florida Atlantic
Locked in Losses: LSU, Texas A&M, Georgia, Alabama
Toss up games: Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Tennessee
Worst Case: 5-7
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- LSU Tigers
- Alabama Crimson Tide
- Arkansas Razorbacks
- Georgia Bulldogs
- Texas A&M Aggies
- Florida Gators
- South Carolina Gamecocks
- Rest of the SEC (Kentucky, Ole Miss, Miss State, Vanderbilt, Missouri)