Thursday, December 13, 2007

Add Auburn to 'The Spread Offense' list

News out of Auburn University's football program is that they have hired Tony Franklin to be their new offensive coordinator, starting immediately.

Tommy Tuberville hired Franklin from Troy on Wednesday to replace Al Borges. Auburn was 8-4 this season, but struggled offensively.

Auburn ranked 101st out of 119 teams in offense, while high-scoring Troy was 17th running Franklin's no-huddle attack.

Troy led the nation with 81.5 plays per game in Franklin's second season as coordinator. He previously coached at Kentucky under Hal Mumme.

Tuberville said that Auburn will still be physical and run the football, noting that Troy had about a 50-50 mix this season. "The biggest difference in philosophy is he's going to set up the run by passing, while we've set up the pass by running the ball."

The spread means that the quarterback has to be multi-dimensional. "He's your main man," Tuberville said. "He runs it, he throws it, he hands it off, he does it all. . . . Everything is built around the quarterback."

Auburn will play Clemson in this year's Chick-fil-A Bowl, and Tuberville didn't rule out a 'sneak-peek' of the spread in that game, though with only about 10 days of practice, it may make it very hard to execute.

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