The Auburn Corner: Tigers Must Get Things Right Quickly
(Photo via Austin Perryman/Auburn Tigers)
Every Tuesday right here you can read The Auburn Corner, where we’ll get into a different topic on the Auburn Tigers, break down the previous game, preview the upcoming game, and everything in between. In this week’s edition, Auburn’s offensive issues were on full display in the first week of SEC play, and it doesn’t get any easier from here for the Tigers:
To say Auburn’s first trial in SEC play under Hugh Freeze was a disaster would be an understatement. Payton Thorne looked overwhelmed and the offense was only able to muster up 3 points (Auburn’s touchdown came on a scoop and score) against a Texas A&M defense that gave up 48 points to Miami just two weeks ago.
You can chock it up to the simple fact that it is year one of a rebuild for Hugh Freeze and perhaps expectations were too high after an offseason of recruiting momentum, but if things don’t turn around for the Tigers on offense, it is going to be a long season.
Of course, the name of the game for the rest of the season for Auburn will be limiting opponents on defense enough to keep the offense in the game, but that formula was unsuccessful against Texas A&M.
Payton Thorne finished 6 of 12 for 44 yards and was eventually pulled for Robby Ashford, who did not fare much better throwing the ball (1 of 4 for 4 yards). Redshirt freshman Holden Geriner got into the game as well, but showed accuracy issues and did not do much to inspire confidence.
The ugly truth is the fact that Auburn may not have a quarterback on the roster right now who can allow them to compete in SEC play.
It may be time to revaluate what the ceiling of this Auburn team can be in 2023. I have no doubt that Hugh Freeze is the right man for the job. It took one offseason to prove that. But he just is not working with a whole lot roster wise in a hyper-competitive SEC.
Moving forward, the Tigers will host the 2x defending national champion Georgia Bulldogs at Jordan-Hare Stadium on Saturday, and Thorne is expected to start once again. After that, it’s a road trip to LSU and a home game against Ole Miss.
If Auburn cannot fix the issues it showed on Saturday, and fast, things might fly off the rails here.