Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 11/13/13
The 2013 season for Auburn Tigers has been one that no one could have seen coming. The Tigers finished 2012 with a 3-9 record and were arguably the worst team in the SEC. Auburn fired head coach Gene Chizik and brought in former offensive coordinator from their 2010 national championship team Gus Malzahn. Malzahn has worked wonders in his first year at Auburn as he has them sitting at 9-1 with only two games remaining in the regular season. Auburn is coming off a win against Tennessee in which they rushed for over 200 yards and only had to attempt 9 passes the entire game. The run offense of Auburn has been one of the best in all of college football this year and continues to improve with each game. Tigers’ quarterback Nick Marshall who was a former defensive back for Georgia in 2011 has made this offense run on all cylinders with his running abilities. Auburn now has two huge games left on their schedule to close out their regular season. The first of these two is a matchup in Auburn against the Georgia Bulldogs. The Bulldogs have been impacted by injuries all season and have been one of the nation’s biggest disappointments because of all the injuries. Georgia is a dangerous trap game for Auburn because of quarterback Aaron Murray. Murray has engraved his name as one of the best quarterback’s in SEC history. He will have to have a near perfect game if he wishes to lead his Bulldogs over Auburn on Saturday. The Tigers can’t afford to overlook Georgia as the biggest game of their season lies ahead against Alabama following the showdown against the Bulldogs. The game being in Auburn is a huge plus for the Tigers and should be the difference in them not falling against Georgia. The Tigers should be able to use their strong running game to run past a beat up Georgia defense. The Auburn Tigers close the season against long time rival Alabama in the Iron Bowl. If Auburn takes care of business against Georgia they will enter the showdown against Alabama at 10-1. This would set up a winner take all game for a trip to the SEC title game in Atlanta. The Tigers haven’t been a serious threat to Alabama since their 2010 national title season in which they rallied from a 20 point deficit to win in the second half.  Auburn would be an underdog to Alabama at home which could set up a perfect scenario for Auburn to take down Alabama. The home crowd of Auburn would be ecstatic and could be the one factor that helps Auburn stay competitive in this game. I don’t believe Auburn would have enough to take down Alabama, but are certainly on the right track in returning to national prominence for years to come. The Auburn Tigers still have SEC title hopes and even a BCS at large bid still in their sights this season. The Tigers have two of their toughest games on the schedule remaining and will be the difference between having a magical season or a good season. I feel the Tigers finish the regular season at 10-2 with their second loss being to Alabama. This would be a very nice bounce back season from last year and would leave no doubt that Malzahn is the right guy for the Auburn job. The Tigers are well on their way back to being a national power like they were under Tommy Tuberville and in their 2010 national championship season. The fans of Auburn now have something to be excited about and can look forward to a bright future with Malzahn.  The 2013 season still has plenty to offer for Auburn and if they somehow can earn two more victories to close out the regular season this year will be more than any Tigers’ fan could have ever imagined. It is hard to believe that just a year ago with many of these same players Auburn finished 3-9 and was a team that had no guidance or direction at all. Malzahn should be up for coach of the year consideration in the SEC and nationally. The SEC can proudly say, without a doubt, that Alabama is once again a two team state.
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