Auburn Tigers football
|Auburn Tigers football|
|Athletic director||Jay Jacobs|
|Head coach||Gus Malzahn|
|Other staff||Rhett Lashlee, OC
Ellis Johnson, DC
|Home stadium||Jordan–Hare Stadium|
|Field||Pat Dye Field|
|Stadium surface||Natural Grass|
|League||NCAA Division I (FBS)|
|Division||SEC Western Division|
|Past conferences||Independent (1892–1894)
Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (1895–1920)
Southern Conference (1921–1932)
|All-time record||726–415–47 (.631)|
|Postseason bowl record||22–13–2|
|Claimed national titles||2 (1957, 2010)|
|Unclaimed national titles||6 (1913, 1914, 1958, 1983, 1993, 2004)|
|Conference titles||12 (1900, 1913, 1919, 1932, 1957, 1983, 1987, 1988, 1989, 2004, 2010, 2013)|
|Division titles||8 (1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2010, 2013)|
|Heisman winners||3 (Pat Sullivan, Bo Jackson, and Cam Newton)|
|Fight song||War Eagle (Fight Song)|
|Mascot||Aubie the Tiger|
|Marching band||Auburn University Marching Band|
|Rivals||Alabama Crimson Tide (Iron Bowl)
Georgia Bulldogs (Deep South's Oldest Rivalry)
LSU Tigers (Tiger Bowl)
The Auburn Tigers football team represents Auburn University in the sport of American football. The Auburn Tigers compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) and the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference (SEC).
Auburn officially began competing in intercollegiate football in 1892. The Tigers joined the Southeastern Conference in 1932 as one of the inaugural members of the conference and the Tigers began competing in the West Division when the conference divided in 1992. Auburn officially claims two national championships (1957, 2010), seven perfect seasons, 12 conference championships, eight divisional championships, and has made 38 bowl appearances, including eight historically major or BCS bowl berths (Sugar, Orange, BCS Championship). The Tigers have the 13th most wins in FBS history with over 700 victories and have finished ranked in the Top 25 of either the AP or Coaches polls 36 times, including 17 top ten finishes (ranked 12th nationally for AP poll top ten finishes). The Tigers have produced three Heisman Trophy winners: quarterback Pat Sullivan in 1971, running back Bo Jackson in 1985, and quarterback Cam Newton in 2010. Auburn has also produced sixty-six consensus All-American players, many all-conference team selections including All-SEC player and All-SEC academic, multiple MVPs and Rhodes Scholar athletes, and other academic honors. The College Football Hall of Fame has inducted a total of 12 individuals from Auburn, including 8 student-athletes and four head coaches: John Heisman, Mike Donahue, Ralph "Shug" Jordan, and Pat Dye. Ralph "Shug" Jordan, who coached from 1951 to 1975 and led Auburn to its first national championship in 1957, won a total of 176 games, the most by any Auburn coach. Former head coach Gene Chizik led the Tigers to their second claimed national championship and the school's first consensus national title in 2010. Auburn's home stadium is Jordan–Hare Stadium, which opened in 1939 and becomes Alabama's fifth largest city on gamedays with a capacity of 87,451. Auburn's archrival is in-state foe Alabama. The Tigers and Crimson Tide meet annually in the Iron Bowl, one of the biggest rivalries in all of sports. The Tigers also maintain rivalries with SEC foes Georgia and LSU.
The Tigers are currently led by head coach Gus Malzahn, Auburn's offensive coordinator from 2009 to 2011 and during the 2010 national championship season. He returned as head coach on December 4, 2012, following the departure of Gene Chizik. The Tigers are the reigning SEC Champions after defeating #5 Missouri 59–42 in the 2013 SEC Championship Game. Auburn will play #1 Florida State in the 2014 BCS National Championship Game in Pasadena, California on January 6, 2014. This will mark the second SEC title and BCS Championship appearance in four years. Auburn also has the most SEC Titles in the last ten years with three, 2004, 2010, and 2013.
- 1 Origins
- 2 History
- 2.1 Beginnings and early years (1892–1903)
- 2.2 Mike Donahue era (1904–1922)
- 2.3 Searching for success (1923–1950)
- 2.4 Ralph "Shug" Jordan era (1951–1975)
- 2.5 Doug Barfield era (1976–1980)
- 2.6 Pat Dye era (1981–1992)
- 2.7 Terry Bowden era (1993–1998)
- 2.8 Tommy Tuberville Era (1999–2008)
- 2.9 Gene Chizik Era (2009–2012)
- 2.10 Gus Malzahn era (2013–present)
- 3 Modern history
- 4 Historical ranking
- 5 Heisman links
- 6 Team awards and records
- 7 Traditions
- 8 Current Coaching Staff
- 9 Recruiting
- 10 Head coaches
- 11 Award winners
- 12 Tigers in the NFL
- 13 Iron Bowl
- 14 Bowl history
- 15 Future schedules
- 16 References
- 17 External links
The organization of Auburn's first football team is credited to George Petrie, who led the 1892 Tigers to a 3–2 record. Petrie also chose burnt orange and navy blue as the official colors for Auburn athletic teams, which was inspired by his alma mater, the University of Virginia. The first game was against the University of Georgia at Piedmont Park in Atlanta, Georgia. Auburn won, 10–0, in front of a crowd of 2,000, in a game that would establish the Deep South's Oldest Rivalry. Auburn met in-state rival Alabama for the first time ever at Lakeview Park in Birmingham, Alabama during the 1893 season, which ended with a 32–22 victory for the Tigers.
Since its beginnings in 1892, Auburn football has accumulated 2 national championships, 11 conference championships, 8 divisional championships, seven perfect seasons, and three Heisman Trophy winners.
Beginnings and early years (1892–1903)
Auburn was led by nine different coaches over a 12-year span, including John Heisman (1895–1899), for whom the Heisman trophy is named. During five years, Heisman compiled a 12–4–2 record, before departing for Clemson in 1900. Auburn's first conference membership came in 1895, when it joined the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAA). The first conference championship and undefeated season came in 1900, when the Tigers went 4–0 under coach Billy Watkins.
Mike Donahue era (1904–1922)
In 1904, Mike Donahue became the tenth head coach of the Auburn Tigers. His first team finished with a 5–0 record, marking Auburn's second undefeated season. The 1907 season would mark the last time Auburn would play Alabama until 1948, after a 7–7 tie between the two rivals. Donahue's best season came in 1913, when Auburn claimed its second conference championship with an 8–0 record. The 1913 Tigers were also named national champions by selectors Billingsley Report, 1st-N-Goal, and James Howard. The 1914 team also won a conference championship with an 8–0–1 record. The Tigers would return to the top of the conference once again in 1919, with an 8–1 record. Auburn moved to the Southern Conference in 1921, one year before Donahue's departure from Auburn in 1922, before becoming the coach at LSU in 1923.
Searching for success (1923–1950)
Auburn experienced a decline in success during the late 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s. The Tigers underwent nine different coaching changes over a 28-year period. The only conference championship during this time came in 1932, after a 9–0–1 season under coach Chet A. Wynne. In 1933, Auburn, along with 12 other institutions, left the Southern Conference to form the Southeastern Conference (SEC). Auburn's first bowl appearance came in 1936 under coach Jack Meagher after a 7–2–2 season. The Tigers traveled to Havana, Cuba to play Villanova in the Bacardi Bowl, which ended in a 7–7 tie. Auburn's first bowl win came after the 1937 season against Michigan State in the Orange Bowl. Due to the events surrounding World War II, Auburn did not field a team in 1943, but resumed competition in 1944 under Carl Voyles. During Earl Brown's tenure, Auburn met Alabama for the first time since 1907, which ended with an Alabama victory. The Tigers quickly responded in 1949, as they stunned the heavily favored Crimson Tide in a 14–13 victory. An 0–10 season in 1950 called for a change, and marked the end of a trying era for Auburn football.
Ralph "Shug" Jordan era (1951–1975)
In 1951, Auburn hired Ralph "Shug" Jordan to become the new head coach of the Tigers. During his first season, Auburn finished with a 5–5 record. He led the Tigers to three consecutive bowl appearances in 1953, 1954, and 1955. Jordan is most recognized for his 1957 squad, which finished the season with a 10–0 record, and won Auburn's first SEC Championship. The Associated Press named the Auburn Tigers no. 1 in its postseason poll(Prior to the Bowl Games). The 1957 Auburn team was ineligible for Bowl participation due to NCAA Sanctions, having been placed on probation indefinitely by the Southeastern Conference, after having paid two high school players US$500 apiece. The 1958 team was also named national champions by Montgomery Full Season Championship poll, after a 9–0–1 season. Auburn went on to appear in bowl games in 1963 and 1965. Beginning in 1968, the Tigers enjoyed seven consecutive bowl appearances under coach Jordan. In 1971, Auburn quarterback Pat Sullivan led the Tigers to a 9–2 record, and became the school's first Heisman Trophy winner. Auburn would go on to lose the 1972 Sugar Bowl to Oklahoma, 40–22. One of Jordan's biggest victories came against Alabama in 1972, when the Tigers shocked the Crimson Tide in a 17–16 upset. The 1972 Iron Bowl became known as the "Punt Bama Punt" game, due to two blocked Alabama punts in the fourth quarter, which were both returned for Auburn touchdowns. In 1973, Auburn's Cliff–Hare Stadium was renamed Jordan–Hare Stadium, which was the first stadium in the nation to be named for an active coach. After the 1975 season, Jordan retired after a 25-year tenure at Auburn, with a 176–83–7 record and a .675 winning percentage. The 176 career wins remain a record for an Auburn coach.
Doug Barfield era (1976–1980)
Following Jordan's retirement, Auburn hired Doug Barfield to become the new head coach. From 1976 to 1980, Barfield's Tigers compiled a 27–27–1 on-field record, with no bowl appearances. He lost all five games to rival Alabama during his tenure, and was later awarded two victories due to forfeits by Mississippi State in 1976 and 1977, making his record 29–25–1. He was dismissed from his position after a disappointing season in 1980, as the Tigers finished with a 5–6 record. Auburn then hired Pat Dye, a former assistant coach at Alabama under Coach Paul W. Bryant, and head coach at Wyoming at the time. During his first season in 1981, Auburn finished with a 5–6 record.
Pat Dye era (1981–1992)
In 1982, Pat Dye led Auburn to a 9–3 record and its first bowl appearance in eight years. The 1982 season would also begin a streak of nine consecutive bowl game appearances. The highlight of the season came against Alabama in the Iron Bowl, when Auburn snapped the Tide's 9-game winning streak. The 1982 Iron Bowl is widely known as the "Bo Over the Top" game, for Auburn running back Bo Jackson's leap over the top of a pile from the one-yard line to secure a 23–22 victory over Alabama. This would be the final Iron Bowl for Alabama's legendary coach, Bear Bryant, who retired after the 1982 season and died on January 26, 1983.
Dye's best season came in 1983, when the Tigers went 11–1, claiming the conference championship. Auburn went on to defeat Michigan in the Sugar Bowl 9–7. Some felt that #3 Auburn should have been crowned the national champions, due to #5 Miami's upset of #1 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl, and #7 Georgia's upset of #2 Texas in the Cotton Bowl. Nonetheless, Miami jumped from No. 5 to No. 1 in both the AP and Coaches polls, while Auburn remained in the No. 3 spot behind #2 Nebraska. The Tigers were named national champions by various polling organizations, such as the New York Times and Billingsley Report.
In 1985, running back Bo Jackson would become the school's second Heisman Trophy winner. Auburn would go on to win three consecutive SEC Championships in 1987, 1988, and 1989. In 1988, defensive tackle Tracy Rocker became the school's first Lombardi Award winner and also won the Outland Trophy. Pat Dye is credited for organizing the first ever Iron Bowl played in Auburn. On December 2, 1989, Bill Curry's #2 Crimson Tide (10–0) traveled to Jordan–Hare Stadium, which had surpassed the seating capacity of Legion Field, to face the #11 Auburn Tigers, who defeated the Tide, 30–20. The 1989 Iron Bowl would continue a 4-game winning streak over Alabama. Since 1981, Auburn has a 17–15 edge over Alabama in Iron Bowl wins, but Pat Dye's record was 6–6 against Alabama.
Dye's tenure on the plains ended when Auburn was penalized for payments by boosters and assistant coaches to a player, Eric Ramsey. Tape recordings were released that implicated a booster named "Corky" Frost, and present Troy University head coach Larry Blakeney. The controversy landed the Auburn program a spot on 60 Minutes and an eventual NCAA investigation. The investigation personally implicated Dye for rules violations. [NCAA Constitution 2.1, and Bylaws 12.1.2-(l), 184.108.40.206 and 220.127.116.11] The institution violated the provisions of institutional control in that numerous improper loans were obtained by student-athletes. These loans were made to student-athletes with eligibility remaining on a deferred-payment basis based upon their potential future income as professional athletes. The director of athletics/head football coach and some of the assistant football coaching staff members were aware that student-athletes were applying for loans, but no system was in place to: (1) monitor the propriety of those loans; (2) educate the representative of the institution's athletics interests who, at least one coaching staff member knew, was reviewing the student-athletes' potential loans, or (3) educate the student-athletes who were encouraged to apply for loans when they needed money without receiving any instruction on applicable NCAA legislation. (Dye) The director of athletics/head football coach met with football student-athletes to warn the young men not to sign contracts with sports agents prior to the completion of their NCAA eligibility, and instead, he recommended that they obtain loans if they needed money. (Dye) The head coach referred at least three student-athletes to a "representative of the institution's athletics interests"(booster) at a local bank (Colonial) for the possibility of obtaining a loan. He knew it was a violation of NCAA legislation for student-athletes to obtain loans based upon their payback potential as professional athletes. The NCAA also determined that as head coach and athletic director, Dye should have known about and stopped the payments to Ramsey. The fallout from the NCAA probation against the football team pushed Dye out as athletic director in 1991 and as head coach the following year.
Over twelve seasons, Dye achieved a 99–39–4 record, the third highest number of wins in Auburn football history, only behind Mike Donahue and Ralph "Shug" Jordan. In 2005, the playing surface of Jordan–Hare Stadium was named "Pat Dye Field" in honor of Dye's achievements and contributions he made to Auburn during his tenure.
Terry Bowden era (1993–1998)
Following the departure of Pat Dye, Auburn named Terry Bowden, son of legendary coach Bobby Bowden, head coach of the Tigers. In 1993, while serving a one-year television ban and two-year postseason bowl ban due to NCAA probation, Auburn shocked the nation by completing the season with a perfect 11–0 record. The Tigers were not eligible to play in the SEC Championship Game, nor a bowl game, but were named national champions(Along with Florida State, Notre Dame, and Nebraska) by the National Championship Foundation. The most memorable game, of the 1994 season was the "Interception Game" versus LSU. In which the Auburn defense intercepted 7 LSU passes, returning 3 for touchdowns in the 4th quarter (Ken Alvis, Fred Smith and Brian Robinson). During the first two seasons under Bowden, the Tigers amassed a 20–1–1 record. After serving two years of probation, Auburn made three consecutive bowl game appearances from 1995 to 1997. Bowden's 1997 team won the SEC Western Division title, and played in the SEC Championship Game, falling to Tennessee, 30–29. In 1998, Bowden faced criticism for recruiting woes, off-the-field issues, and player discipline, which eventually led to his resignation after a 1–5 start on the season. Interim head coach Bill Oliver finished out the season, which ended with a 3–8 record. Bowden compiled a 47–17–1 record at Auburn after six seasons as head coach.
Tommy Tuberville Era (1999–2008)
Following the 1998 season, Ole Miss head coach Tommy Tuberville left Oxford to become the new head coach of the Auburn Tigers. In his first season, the Tigers finished with a 5–6 record, but would return to the SEC Championship Game in 2000, following a 9–0 victory over Alabama, which was played in Tuscaloosa for the first time in 99 years. The Tigers fell to Florida, 28–6, but would begin a streak of eight consecutive bowl appearances. Auburn would win a share of the SEC Western Division title in 2001 and 2002. The high point of the 2002 season was Auburn's 17–7 upset victory over Alabama, which began a six-year winning streak over the Tide. Tuberville's 2004 team completed the season with a perfect 13–0 record and an SEC Championship. Auburn was left out of the BCS National Championship Game, due to two other undefeated teams ranked higher, #1 USC (12–0) and #2 Oklahoma (12–0). The Tigers went on to defeat Virginia Tech, 16–13, in the Sugar Bowl, completing Auburn's third perfect season in the modern era of college football. USC defeated Oklahoma, 55–19, to win the national championship; however, they were later stripped of their title due to improper recruiting practices. Auburn finished the season ranked No. 2 in the final AP and Coaches polls. The Tigers were recognized as national champions by various polling organizations, including FansPoll and Golf Digest. Tuberville came under much criticism during the 2008 season for his lackluster performance and coaching staff, including offensive coordinator Tony Franklin, whom he fired after a shocking 14–13 loss to Vanderbilt in October. At that time, the team was 4–2. Auburn finished the year with a 5–7 record, after a disappointing 36–0 loss to rival Alabama in the Iron Bowl, marking the Tide's first victory over Auburn in Tuscaloosa and snapping Auburn's six-year winning streak. Tuberville voluntarily resigned the following week, stating that he would take a year off from coaching. Over ten seasons, Tuberville compiled an 85–40 record at Auburn, while winning one conference championship, five division championships, and completing Auburn's third perfect season in modern history.
Gene Chizik Era (2009–2012)
On December 13, 2008, Athletic Director Jay Jacobs announced Gene Chizik, former Auburn defensive coordinator and then Iowa State head coach, as the new Auburn head coach. He received early criticism for his 5–19 record during his time at Iowa State during 2007 and 2008. He quickly began forming his new coaching staff, including offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn, who had coached the nation's top offense at Tulsa for the previous two seasons. During his first season, Auburn finished with a 7–5 record, and defeated Northwestern 38–35 in the Outback Bowl, its first bowl game since 2007.
Following the 2009 season, Chizik and his staff recruited a top-5 recruiting class, highlighted by junior college transfer quarterback Cam Newton and running back Mike Dyer. Auburn's 2010 "A-Day" spring scrimmage drew a crowd of 63,217 fans to Jordan–Hare Stadium, setting a new spring game attendance record. Auburn, led by quarterback Cam Newton, running back Mike Dyer, and defensive tackle Nick Fairley, completed the regular season with a perfect 12–0 record, highlighted by a comeback victory over Alabama. The Tide led Auburn 24–0 in the first half, only to lose the game in the second half, 28–27. It was the largest lead ever blown by Alabama in Tuscaloosa and the largest ever comeback through the 75-year history of the game. Auburn went on to defeat South Carolina 56–17 in the SEC Championship Game, which secured a spot in the BCS National Championship Game. This would be the first BCS bowl game appearance for Auburn since 2004, when the Tigers were left out of the national championship picture. Cam Newton became the third Heisman Trophy winner in school history, while also winning the AP Player of the Year Award, the Walter Camp Award, the Davey O'Brien Award, the Manning Award, and the Maxwell Award. Nick Fairley became the second Auburn player in school history to win the Lombardi Award. Auburn faced the Oregon Ducks on January 10, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona, which ended with a 22–19 Auburn victory, secured by a game-winning field goal kick by senior Wes Byrum, who also kicked the game-winning field goals against Clemson and Kentucky during the regular season. Auburn finished the season with a perfect 14–0 record, and its first national championship since 1957. Auburn celebrated their national championship with a special ceremony at Jordan–Hare Stadium two weeks following the championship game in Arizona. The coaches and players were honored, along with players from the 1957, 1993, and 2004 undefeated teams. The event drew over 78,000 fans, covering Jordan–Hare Stadium lower decks, spilling into both upper decks. A special "reverse" Tiger Walk and special rolling of Toomer's Corner also took place. After settling down from the magical 2010 season, Chizik and his staff began preparing to defend their national title.
Auburn opened the 2011 season with dramatic wins against Utah State and Mississippi State. Auburn then fell to eventual ACC Champion Clemson on the road in Death Valley, which snapped Auburn's 17-game winning streak, which began on January 1, 2010, vs. Northwestern in Outback Bowl. The Tigers would go on to complete the regular season with a 7–5 record and ranked no. 25 in the final BCS poll, with wins against Florida Atlantic, no. 9 South Carolina, Florida, Ole Miss, and Samford. Auburn fell to Arkansas, LSU (SEC Champions), Georgia (eastern division champion), and arch-rival Alabama (National Champions). The Tigers won their 37th bowl appearance by a score of 43–24 over the Virginia Cavaliers in the 2011 Chick-fil-A Bowl on December 31, 2011.
Following a 3–9 (0–8 in conference play) season in 2012, the program's worst season in 60 years, Chizik was terminated as head football coach. In addition to the remarkably poor 2012 season, mounting player disciplinary issues and the lack of on-field success delivered from several consecutive highly rated recruiting classes contributed to Chizik's firing. Over his four season tenure as head coach at Auburn, Chizik compiled an overall record of 33–19 (15–17 in conference play), delivering one SEC Championship and a National Championship in 2010 and three consecutive bowl wins from 2009 to 2011 before not qualifying for a bowl in 2012.
Gus Malzahn era (2013–present)
After Gene Chizik's termination at the end of the 2012 season, Athletic Director Jay Jacobs would form a search committee headed by former Auburn Heisman Trophy winners Bo Jackson and Pat Sullivan along with fellow former player Mac Crawford to find the programs next head coach. The committee would go on to unanimously select Arkansas State head coach and former Auburn offensive coordinator from 2009 to 2011 Gus Malzahn. On December 4, 2012 it was officially announced that Malzahn would assume the position of head coach at Auburn University. He is currently in his first season, and has his 2013 Tigers 12–1 and has won the SEC Championship versus the Missouri Tigers. The season was highlighted by two of the greatest plays in Auburn football history. After allowing #24 Georgia to take a 38–37 lead with less than two minutes remaining, quarterback Nick Marshall threw a 73-yard Hail Mary pass to Ricardo Louis for the game-winning touchdown after being tipped up by two Georgia defenders. The Tigers would put the game away in the final 25 seconds and win 43–38 over the Bulldogs. Auburn also defeated #1 Alabama in dramatic fashion. After lobbying for one second to be restored to the game clock in the fourth quarter, tied 28–28 with the Tigers, Alabama head coach Nick Saban chose to attempt a 57-yard game-winning field goal. The Tide was 0–3 in field goal attempts on the day with veteran kicker Cade Foster, thus chose to use Adam Griffith for the final attempt. Griffith's kick did not have the distance and the ball landed in the hands of Chris Davis, who would return the ball unofficially 109 yards endzone to endzone for an Auburn touchdown and seal a victory for the Tigers along with a berth in the SEC Championship Game. Auburn would face #5 Missouri in the 2013 SEC Championship Game, eventually winning 59–42 in an offensive showdown which produced 677 total yards for Auburn, including a 304-yard performance by game MVP Tre Mason. The Tigers will face #1 Florida State in the 2014 BCS National Championship Game in Pasadena, California on January 6, 2014.
While Auburn football has a long and storied history, the Tigers have had uneven success in recent years. Since the expansion of the SEC in 1992, Auburn has the fourth highest win percentage in SEC West league play (58.7%), behind Alabama, LSU and Texas A&M, respectively. At of the end of the 2012 season, Auburn teams had won 45 of their last 74 conference match-ups, including 20 of the last 36 SEC away games. When facing their greatest challenge, Auburn teams have won 12 of their last 25 match-ups versus top-10 opponents. The Tigers did well at Jordan–Hare Stadium at night between 2000 and 2009, when they won 24 of 29. Over the past five seasons, Auburn has won 38 out of 64 total games, ranking 41st nationally in winning percentage (59.4%).
The 1983 Auburn Tigers, led by head coach Pat Dye and running back Bo Jackson, finished 11–1 after playing the nation's toughest schedule. Their only loss came against #3 Texas, who defeated the Tigers, 20–7. Auburn went on to defeat #8 Michigan, 9–7, in the Sugar Bowl. Despite entering the bowl games ranked third in both major polls, and with both teams ranked higher losing their bowl games, the Tigers ended ranked third in the final AP poll. Auburn received 21 polls to Miami's 14.
Head coach Terry Bowden led the 1993 team to a perfect season in his first year on the Plains. The Tigers were the only undefeated team in major college football, however were banned from playing on television or post-season games due to NCAA violations. Rival Alabama was sent to the SEC Championship Game as the substitute representative of the Western Division. Auburn finished ranked fourth in the nation by the Associated Press but was named a co-National Champion by the National Championship Foundation along with Florida State, Nebraska and Notre Dame.
The Auburn Tigers ended the 2004 season undefeated, but were left out of the BCS title game because they ranked third in the final BCS rankings. That left undefeated USC and Oklahoma (ranked No. 1 and No. 2 respectively) to play in the Orange Bowl for the National Championship. Auburn went on to win the Sugar Bowl against Virginia Tech. The team finished No. 2 in both the final AP Poll and USA Today Coaches Poll, following Oklahoma's loss in the National Championship game to the University of Southern California (USC). USC was later stripped of the National Championship for violating NCAA rules.
On October 24, 2010, Auburn was ranked first in the BCS polls for the first time in school history. Their quarterback, Cam Newton, became a Heisman Trophy winner. He had a total of 2,854 yards passing and 30 passing touchdowns. He also rushed for 1,473 yards and 20 touchdowns.
Auburn ended the 2010 regular season a perfect 12–0 after a come-back win over cross-state rival, Alabama, in the 75th "Iron Bowl" game by a score of 28–27. Auburn defeated South Carolina in the December 4th, 2010 SEC Championship game in Atlanta, GA by a score of 56–17. This SEC Championship victory clinched Auburn's berth in the BCS National Championship Game which took place in Glendale, Arizona against the Oregon Ducks. The Tigers defeated the Ducks, 22–19, with a last-second field goal to win their third national championship, and their first undisputed title.
Auburn has the 13th most wins in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision. In terms of winning percentage, Auburn ranks as the 9th most successful team in the past 25 years with a 71% win rate (213–86–5) and 9th over the last half century (1955–2010) with 69%. Of the 93 current I-A football programs that been active since Auburn first fielded a team 116 years ago, Auburn ranks 14th in winning percentage over that period.
The College Football Research Center lists Auburn as the 14th best college football program in history, with eight Auburn squads listed in Billingsley's Top 200 Teams of All Time (1869–2010). After the 2008 season, ESPN ranked Auburn the 21st most prestigious program in history.
The Associated Press poll statistics show Auburn with the 11th best national record of being ranked in the final AP Poll and 14th overall (ranked 503 times out of 1058 polls since the poll began in 1936), with an average ranking of 11.2. Since the Coaches Poll first released a final poll in 1950, Auburn has 26 seasons where the team finished ranked in the top 20 in both the AP and Coaches Polls.
Three Auburn players, Pat Sullivan in 1971, Bo Jackson in 1985, and Cam Newton in 2010, have won the Heisman Trophy. The Trophy's namesake, John Heisman, coached at Auburn from 1895 until 1899. Of the eight schools of which Heisman coached (among others, Georgia Tech and Clemson), Auburn is the only school that has produced a Heisman Trophy winner. The Auburn athletic department has announced that it will honor the school's three Heisman winners with statues, along with a bust of coach John Heisman, outside the east side of Jordan-Hare Stadium.
Team awards and records
The AP Poll did not begin selecting a champion until 1936 nor the AFCA Coaches Poll until 1950. Six Auburn teams have been awarded some form of "National Champions" title, though only two are claimed—the 1957 title, awarded by the Associated Press and an undisputed national championship in 2010.
|1957||Ralph "Shug" Jordan||AP||10–0 (7–0)||no bowl||no bowl|
|2010||Gene Chizik||BCS, AP, Coaches||14–0 (8–0)||BCS National Championship Game||#1 Auburn 22, #2 Oregon 19|
|Claimed National Championships:||2|
The 1913 team finished a perfect 8–0 and was awarded the national title by Billingsley. The 1983 team featuring Bo Jackson went 11–1 and finished the season by beating Michigan in the Sugar Bowl. Despite the team entering the game ranked third in the AP and both teams ranked ahead losing their bowl games, Auburn was jumped by fifth ranked Miami for the AP National Title. The 1993 team finished 11–0 but was ineligible to play in the postseason due to NCAA-imposed sanctions for paying Eric Ramsey and finished ranked fourth by the AP. The undefeated 2004 squad (13–0) finished second in the AP and Coaches Top 25 polls, but the team was awarded the 2004 Fanspoll.com People's National Champion title. After USC was stripped of the FWAA title, the organization discussed awarding the Grantland Rice Award to Auburn but ultimately voted not to award a trophy for 2004. On June 6, 2011, the BCS officially stripped USC of its 2004 national championship, stating that there would be no champion for the 2004 season. Auburn does not officially claim these titles, but acknowledges the 1913, 1983, 1993, and 2004 teams in its media guide.
Since its beginnings in 1892, Auburn has completed fourteen undefeated seasons. This includes seven (7) perfect seasons in which the Tigers were undefeated and untied:
Auburn has won a total of 12 conference championships, including 8 SEC Championships.
- 1892–1894, Independent
- 1895–1920, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association
- 1921–1932, Southern Conference
- 1933–present, Southeastern Conference
|Year||Conference||Coach||Overall Record||Conference Record||Bowl||Result|
|1900†||SIAA||Billy Watkins||4–0||4–0||no bowl|
|1913||SIAA||Mike Donahue||9–0||8–0||no bowl|
|1919||SIAA||Mike Donahue||8–1||5–1||no bowl|
|1932†||Southern†||Chet A. Wynne||9–0–1||6–0–1||no bowl|
|1957||SEC||Ralph "Shug" Jordan||10–0||7–0||no bowl due to NCAA infractions|
|1983||SEC||Pat Dye||11–1||6–0||Sugar Bowl||#3 Auburn 9, #8 Michigan 7|
|1987||SEC||Pat Dye||9–1–2||6–0–1||Sugar Bowl||#6 Auburn 16, #4 Syracuse 16|
|1988†||SEC||Pat Dye||10–2||6–1||Sugar Bowl||#7 Auburn 7, #4 Florida State 13|
|1989†||SEC||Pat Dye||10–2||6–1||Hall of Fame Bowl||#9 Auburn 31, #20 Ohio State 14|
|2004||SEC||Tommy Tuberville||13–0||8–0||Sugar Bowl||#3 Auburn 16, #9 Virginia Tech 13|
|2010||SEC||Gene Chizik||14–0||8–0||BCS National Championship Game||#1 Auburn 22, #2 Oregon 19|
|2013||SEC||Gus Malzahn||12–1||7–1||BCS National Championship Game||#2 Auburn, #1 Florida State|
|Total Conference Championships:||12|
|† Denotes co-champions|
Since divisional play began in 1992, Auburn has won the SEC Western Division championship and gone on to the conference title game on 5 occasions and is 3–2 in the SEC Championship Game. The most recent appearance came in 2013, as Auburn completed the regular season 11–1, and defeated Missouri, 59–42, in the 2013 SEC Championship Game. Auburn has also shared the western division title, but did not play in the championship game due to NCAA probation and a tiebreakers on 3 occasions.
|Year||Division||Coach||Overall Record||Conference Record||SEC Championship Game Result|
|1993||SEC West||Terry Bowden||11–0||8–0||no championship game due to NCAA Probation|
|1994||SEC West||Terry Bowden||9–1–1||6–1–1||no championship game due to NCAA Probation|
|1997||SEC West||Terry Bowden||10–3||6–2||#11 Auburn 29, #3 Tennessee 30|
|2000||SEC West||Tommy Tuberville||9–4||6–2||#18 Auburn 6, #7 Florida 28|
|2001†||SEC West||Tommy Tuberville||7–5||5–3||LSU won divisional tiebreaker|
|2002†||SEC West||Tommy Tuberville||9–4||5–3||Arkansas won divisional tiebreaker|
|2004||SEC West||Tommy Tuberville||13–0||8–0||#3 Auburn 38, #15 Tennessee 28|
|2005†||SEC West||Tommy Tuberville||9–3||7–1||LSU won divisional tiebreaker|
|2010||SEC West||Gene Chizik||14–0||8–0||#1 Auburn 56, #19 South Carolina 17|
|2013||SEC West||Gus Malzahn||11–1||7–1||#3 Auburn 59, #5 Missouri 42|
|† Denotes co-champions|
|Name of Rivalry||Rival||Games Played||First Meeting||Last Meeting||AU Won||AU Lost||Ties||Streak||Latest win|
|Iron Bowl||Alabama||78||1893||2013||35||42||1||1 win||2013, 34–28|
|Deep South's Oldest Rivalry||Georgia||115||1892||2013||55||54||8||1 win||2013, 43–38|
|Auburn–LSU football rivalry||LSU||47||1901||2013||20||27||1||3 losses||2010, 24–17|
|Auburn–Florida football rivalry||Florida||83||1912||2011||43||38||2||3 wins||2011, 17–6|
|Auburn–Georgia Tech football rivalry||Georgia Tech||92||1892||2005||47||41||4||2 losses||1987, 20–10|
|Auburn–Tennessee football rivalry||Tennessee||52||1900||2013||28||21||3||6 wins||2013, 55–23|
|Auburn–Tulane football rivalry||Tulane||37||1902||2006||14||17||6||1 win||2006, 38–13|
|Auburn–Clemson rivalry||Clemson||48||1899||2012||34||13||2||2 losses||2010, 27–24|
Total program achievements
|National Champions||1957, 2010|
|Unclaimed National Champions||1900, 1904, 1910, 1913, 1914, 1919, 1932, 1958, 1972, 1983, 1988, 1993, 1994, 2004|
|Conference Champions||1900, 1913, 1919, 1932, 1957, 1983, 1987, 1988, 1989, 2004, 2010, 2013|
|Perfect Seasons||1900, 1904, 1913, 1957, 1993, 2004, 2010|
|Divisional Champions||1993, 1994, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2010, 2013|
|Heisman Trophy Winners||1971, 1985, 2010|
|Final Top 10 (AP)||1955, 1957, 1958, 1963, 1970, 1972, 1974, 1983, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1993, 1994, 2004, 2006, 2010|
|Final Top 10 (Coaches)||1955, 1957, 1958, 1963, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1983, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 2004, 2006, 2010|
|Bowl Victories*||1937, 1954, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1974, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1989, 1990, 1996, 1997, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011|
- Years listed for Bowl victories are seasons for which they occurred.
Before each Auburn home football game, thousands of Auburn fans line Donahue Drive to cheer on the team as they walk from the Auburn Athletic Complex to Jordan–Hare Stadium. The tradition began in the 1950s when groups of kids would walk up the street to greet the team and get autographs. During the tenure of coach Doug Barfield, the coach urged fans to come out and support the team, and thousands did. Today the team walks down the hill and into the stadium surrounded by fans who pat them on the back and shake their hands as they walk. The largest Tiger Walk occurred on December 2, 1989, before the first ever home football game against rival Alabama—the Iron Bowl. On that day, an estimated 20,000 fans packed the one block section of road leading to the stadium. According to former athletic director David Housel, Tiger Walk has become "the most copied tradition in all of college football".
There are many stories surrounding the origins of Auburn's battle cry, "War Eagle". The most popular account involves the first Auburn football game in 1892 between Auburn and the University of Georgia. According to the story, in the stands that day was an old Civil War soldier with an eagle that he had found injured on a battlefield and kept as a pet. The eagle broke free and began to soar over the field, and Auburn began to march toward the Georgia end-zone. The crowd began to chant, "War Eagle" as the eagle soared. After Auburn won the game, the eagle crashed to the field and died but, according to the legend, his spirit lives on every time an Auburn man or woman yells "War Eagle!" The battle cry of "War Eagle" also functions as a greeting for those associated with the University. For many years, a live golden eagle has embodied the spirit of this tradition. The eagle was once housed on campus in The A. Elwyn Hamer Jr. Aviary (which was the second largest single-bird enclosure in the country), but the aviary was taken down in 2003 and the eagle moved to a nearby raptor center. The eagle, War Eagle VI (nicknamed "Tiger"), was trained in 2000 to fly free around the stadium before every home game to the delight of fans. The present eagle, War Eagle VII (nicknamed "Nova"), continues the tradition. War Eagle VI is believed to be the inspiration behind the 2005–2006 Auburn Cheerleading squad's chant, "Tigers, Tigers, Gooooooo Tigers!"
The intersection of Magnolia and College streets in Auburn, which marks the transition from downtown Auburn to the university campus, is known as Toomer's Corner. It is named after Toomer's Drugs, a small store on the corner that has been an Auburn landmark since 1896. Hanging over the corner were two massive old oak trees, planted in 1937, and whenever there was cause for celebration in the Auburn community, toilet paper could usually be found hanging from the trees. Also known as "rolling the corner," this tradition was thought to have originated in the 1970s and until the mid-1990s was relegated to only to celebrating athletic wins.
The oak trees were cut down by the university in April, 2013, as a result of them being poisoned by Harvey Updyke Jr., a fan of rival Alabama.
Wreck Tech Pajama Parade
The Wreck Tech Pajama Parade originated in the 1930s, when a group of mischievous Auburn ROTC cadets, determined to show up the more well-known engineers from Georgia Tech, sneaked out of their dorms the night before the football game between Auburn and Tech and greased the railroad tracks. According to the story, the train carrying the Georgia Tech team slid through town and didn't stop until it was halfway to the neighboring town of Loachapoka, Alabama. The Georgia Tech team was forced to walk the five miles back to Auburn and, not surprisingly, were rather weary at the end of their journey. This likely contributed to their 45–0 loss. While the railroad long ago ceased to be the way teams traveled to Auburn and students never greased the tracks again, the tradition continues in the form of a parade through downtown Auburn. Students parade through the streets in their pajamas and organizations build floats.
Current Coaching Staff
|Name||Position||Alma mater||Year Entering|
|Gus Malzahn||Head Coach||Henderson State||1st|
|Rodney Garner||Associate Head Coach/Defensive Line/Recruiting Coordinator||Auburn||1st|
|Rhett Lashlee||Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks||Arkansas||1st|
|Dameyune Craig||Wide Receivers/Co-Offensive Coordinator||Auburn||1st|
|Ellis Johnson||Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers||The Citadel||1st|
|Charlie Harbison||Safeties/Co-Defensive Coordinator||Gardner-Webb||1st|
|Scott Fountain||Tight Ends/Special teams Coordinator||Samford||1st|
|Tim Horton||Running Back||Arkansas||1st|
|J.B. Grimes||Offensive line||Henderson State||1st|
|Melvin Smith||Cornerbacks||Millsaps College||1st|
|Ryan Russell||Head Strength and Conditioning Coach||Auburn||1st|
Auburn Tigers Football Scout.com team recruiting rankings:
Auburn has had 25 head coaches, and 1 interim head coach, since it began play during the 1892 season. From 2008 to 2012, Gene Chizik has served as Auburn's head coach. The team has played more than 1,150 games over 119 seasons. In that time, six coaches have led the Tigers in postseason bowl games: Jack Meagher, Ralph Jordan, Pat Dye, Terry Bowden, Tommy Tuberville and Gene Chizik. Billy Watkins, Mike Donahue, Chet A. Wynne, Jordan, Dye, Tuberville and Chizik won a combined eleven conference championships. During their tenures, Jordan and Chizik each won national championships with the Tigers.
A number of Auburn players and coaches have won national awards, including 66 players being named as college football All-Americans. The Tigers also have eleven coaches and players that have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Indiana.
The Tigers have retired three numbers to date, honoring the following players:
|Auburn Tigers retired numbers|
While Cam Newton's number 2 is not officially retired, the number has not been worn by any Auburn player since Newton wore it in 2010.
Hall of Fame
|1954 – Jimmy Hitchcock
1956 – Walter Gilbert
1991 – Pat Sullivan
1994 – Tucker Frederickson
1998 – Bo Jackson
2002 – Terry Beasley
2004 – Tracy Rocker
2009 – Ed Dyas
|1951 – "Iron Mike" Donahue
1954 – John Heisman
1982 – Ralph "Shug" Jordan
2005 – Pat Dye
|Walter Camp Award
|1971 – Pat Sullivan, QB
1985 – Bo Jackson, RB
2010 – Cam Newton,QB
|1971 – Pat Sullivan, QB
1985 – Bo Jackson, RB
2010 – Cam Newton,QB
|2010 – Cam Newton,QB|
|Davey O'Brien Award
Best interior lineman
|Jim Thorpe Award
Best defensive back
|2010 – Cam Newton||2010 – Cam Newton||1958 – Zeke Smith,G
1988 – Tracy Rocker, DT
|1988 – Tracy Rocker, DT
2010 – Nick Fairley, DT
|2004 – Carlos Rogers, CB|
|Paul "Bear" Bryant Award
Coach of the Year
|Eddie Robinson Award
Coach of the Year
|Sporting News Award
Coach of the Year
|Home Depot Award
Coach of the Year
Coach of the Year
Best assistant coach
|1993 – Terry Bowden
2004 – Tommy Tuberville
2010 – Gene Chizik
|1993 – Terry Bowden
2013 – Gus Malzahn
|1993 – Terry Bowden
2004 – Tommy Tuberville
2013 – Gus Malzahn
|2010 – Gene Chizik
2013 – Gus Malzahn
|2010 – Gene Chizik||2004 – Gene Chizik
2010 – Gus Malzahn
|Caleb "Tex" Warrington||C||1944||FWAA, WCFF|
|Jimmy Phillips||DE||1957||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Zeke Smith||OG||1958–1959||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Ken Rice||OT||1959–1960||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Tucker Frederickson||RB||1964||FWAA, WCFF|
|Buddy McClinton||DB||1969||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Larry Willingham||DB||1970||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Pat Sullivan||QB||1971||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Terry Beasley||WR||1971||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Ken Bernich||LB||1974||AFCA, WCFF|
|Gregg Carr||LB||1984||AFCA, WCFF|
|Bo Jackson||RB||1983, 1985||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Ben Tamburello||C||1986||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Brent Fullwood||RB||1986||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Aundray Bruce||LB||1987||AFCA, WCFF|
|Stacy Searels||OT||1987||AP, TFN|
|Tracy Rocker||DT||1987–1988||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Ed King||OG||1989–1990||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|David Rocker||DT||1990||AFCA, WCFF|
|Wayne Gandy||OT||1993||AP, FWAA, SH|
|Terry Daniel||P||1993||AFCA, FWAA, WCFF|
|Frank Sanders||WR||1994||AP, FWAA, SH|
|Chris Shelling||SS||1994||FWAA, SH|
|Damon Duval||PK||2001||AFCA, WCFF|
|Marcus McNeill||OT||2004–2005||AP, CBS, FWAA, SI, Rivals, CFN, WCFF|
|Carlos Rogers||CB||2004||AP, FWAA, WCFF|
|Junior Rosegreen||SS||2004||SI, CBS|
|Ben Grubbs||OG||2006||Rivals, ESPN, PFW|
|Cam Newton||QB||2010||AFCA, AP, Rivals, SI, WCFF|
|Lee Ziemba||OT||2010||AFCA, FWAA, SI, WCFF|
|Nick Fairley||DT||2010||AP, FWAA, Rivals, SI, WCFF|
|Steven Clark||P||2011||AP, SI, Rivals|
|Tre Mason||RB||2013||Sporting News|
|Chris Davis||PR||2013||Sporting News|
Tigers in the NFL
The Dow Jones College-Football Success Index ranked Auburn as the eighth best program in the nation, with the second highest Draft Value which indicate "that a school's players perform better than NFL scouts seem to expect". Auburn is tied (with Miami) for second most Top 5 NFL Draft picks this decade, and The Plains have produced 25 first round draft picks overall.
"Running Back U"
Auburn has several former running backs currently playing that position in the NFL (see below). They carry on a long legacy of top NFL backs from Auburn such as Tucker Frederickson, William Andrews, Joe Cribbs, James Brooks, Rudi Johnson, Stephen Davis, Onterio McCalebb, James Bostic, Brandon Jacobs, Lionel James, Brent Fullwood, Carnell Williams, Ronnie Brown, Heath Evans, Kenny Irons, Ben Tate, Fred Beasley,Kevin McCleod, Tony Richardson, Tommie Agee and Bo Jackson. Over the years 1987–2008, there have been 15 Tiger running backs drafted into the NFL, with several more successfully signing as undrafted free-agents.
Current NFL players
Hall of Fame
The Iron Bowl is played annually on Thanksgiving weekend between Auburn and Alabama, and is widely reckoned as one of the most (if not the most) bitter rivalries in college football. The game was first played from 1893 to 1906 but was suspended for 42 years. The game resumed in 1949 and the rivalry has blossomed into one of the biggest games of the year. The winners of the past 5 Iron Bowls have gone on to play in and win the BCS national championship. While Alabama leads the overall series 42-35–1, Auburn has won nine out of 14 meetings since it became a home-and-home series in 2000.
Auburn football teams have been invited to participate in 38 total bowls and have garnered a record of 22–13–2. Auburn ranks as one of the best programs in the nation in success in bowl games. Auburn ranks 16th in all-time bowl appearances with 37, 10th in all-time bowl wins with 22, and 5th in all-time bowl win percentage (minimum of 20 games) at .622. Most recently, Auburn defeated the Virginia Cavaliers in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, 43–24, on December 31, 2011. Auburn has won 5 straight bowl games and 8 out of their last 9. Auburn's 5 straight bowl wins is tied for the longest current bowl game win streak. Auburn will face #1 Florida State in the 2014 BCS National Championship Game in Pasadena, California on January 6, 2014. It will be the Tigers' second BCS Championship appearance in four years.
|W||01-01-1938||6||Michigan St.||0||Orange Bowl|
|L||01-01-1954||13||Texas Tech||35||Gator Bowl|
|W||12-18-1982||33||Boston College||26||Tangerine Bowl|
|L||01-01-1986||16||Texas A&M||36||Cotton Bowl Classic|
|W||01-01-1987||16||Southern California||7||Florida Citrus Bowl|
|L||01-02-1989||7||Florida St.||13||Sugar Bowl|
|W||01-01-1990||31||Ohio St.||14||Hall of Fame Bowl|
|L||01-01-1996||14||Penn St.||43||Outback Bowl|
|L||01-01-2001||28||Michigan||31||Florida Citrus Bowl|
|L||12-31-2001||10||North Carolina||16||Peach Bowl|
|W||01-01-2003||13||Penn St.||9||Capital One Bowl|
|W||12-31-2003||28||Wisconsin||14||Music City Bowl|
|W||01-03-2005||16||Virginia Tech||13||Sugar Bowl|
|L||01-02-2006||10||Wisconsin||24||Capital One Bowl|
|W||01-01-2007||17||Nebraska||14||Cotton Bowl Classic|
|W||01-10-2011||22||Oregon||19||BCS National Championship Game|
|TBD||01-06-2014||TBD||Florida State||TBD||BCS National Championship Game|
Auburn is scheduled to play the following non-conference opponents in future seasons:
|vs. Washington State||vs. San Jose State||vs. Louisville (Atlanta)|
|vs. Arkansas State||at Kansas State||vs. Jacksonville State|
|vs. Western Carolina||vs. Louisiana Tech||vs. Idaho|
|vs. Florida Atlantic||vs. Samford||vs. San Jose State|
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- Barnhart, Tony (2000). Southern fried football: the history, passion, and glory of the great Southern game. Triumph. p. 49. ISBN 978-1-60078-093-6.
- 2010 Auburn Football Media Guide, p. 157
- "Auburn to name Chizik as coach". ESPN.com. 2008-12-15. Archived from the original on 29 March 2010. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- 2010 Auburn Football Media Guide, pp. 136–143
- 2010 Auburn Football Media Guide, pp. 184–193
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- "Heisman Trophy Winners". heisman.com. Retrieved 2007-12-14.[dead link]
- Alder, James. "Walter Camp Award Winners". About.com. Archived from the original on 7 January 2008. Retrieved 2007-12-14.
- "All-Time Outland Trophy Winners". Football Writers Association of America. Retrieved 2007-12-14.
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