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Saturday, November 20, 2010

After two years at Auburn, Gene Chizik's record has changed, but his methods haven't

Auburn was off Saturday, but I wrote a story about head coach Gene Chizik, who has turned around the program much quicker than anyone would have anticipated. Here is how it starts:
AUBURN, Ala. — When the weather changed for the worse at an Auburn practice last week, wide receivers coach Trooper Taylor fully expected to move to the more restrictive indoor facility.

Instead, head coach Gene Chizik pulled a rain plan from his pocket and quickly began directing players to different stations on the outside fields.

“I’m going, ‘Who does that?’” Taylor said. “He never ceases to amaze me when it comes to that.”

Chizik has always had a plan in four years as a head coach, one from which he hasn’t deviated. The only thing that’s changed recently is his record.

Two years after his hire from Iowa State, where a 5-19 record prompted an overwhelming outcry from message boards to airport tarmacs, Chizik has won over the Auburn fan base.

He’s flipped his career record, going 19-5 on the Plains and leading the Tigers into the national title picture with an 11-0 record this season, a quicker turnaround than even the most optimistic Auburn backers could have hoped for.
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AUsome04 said...

"Chizik’s plan didn’t differ much at Auburn, although it coalesced more rapidly, thanks to an aggressive, well-paid coaching staff, a more talented group of upperclassmen and a wider recruiting base to replenish the team’s ranks."

"He also has benefited from an offensive revival, elevated by coordinator Gus Malzahn’s inventive schemes and junior college quarterback Cam Newton’s otherworldly talents..."

Actually even though he "benefitted" from those things you have to give him credit for them also. He hired the coaches and decided to take less salary (& increased their pay to keep them all here a second year). We've always been in fertile recruiting ground; we haven't had a top 'crootin class until Chizik though. And he "benefitted" again for taking chances with Malzahn. Last year around this time in the midst of the late season meltdown the media was saying Gus Malzahn's high school system wouldn't work in the SEC. Now, it's "Chizik would be nothing without him." I didn't see any other schools lining up to pull him from Tulsa. Chizik is our head coach bottom line. And he deserves more credit for this success than trick plays and Cam Newton. WDE

MikeP said...

I think in Coach Chizik both Auburn and Chizik are in the right place for each other.
Unlike some other head coaches Chizik is not about personal glory or where the next million dollars is coming from.

He runs a clean, highly successful program and I'm looking forward to years of Auburn football success with Gene Chizik as our head coach.

War Eagle!

Tar Heel Tiger said...

"a quicker turnaround than even the most optimistic Auburn backers could have hoped for."

You seriously underestimate some of the sunshine-pumping Auburn backers.

Marmot said...

At some point in time the Chizik narrative needs to transition from "how is a 5-19 coach winning at Auburn?" to "how did a 19-5 coach do so poorly at Iowa St?" Subtle difference, but at some point it will have to be acknowledged that the oddity is his Iowa St record, and not his success at Auburn.