When the Tigers take the field on Saturday for a showdown vs. the Georgia Bulldogs, Ingle says you can expect to see him back in the lineup at center, where he has played very well in his first year as a college starter.
In Auburn’s victory at Ole Miss, Ingle was on the sideline, but didn’t play. Backup Steven Ross went the distance, but he was injured in practice during the off-week and may be out for the rest of the season. Getting Ingle back on the field has been a high priority for Auburn’s team doctors and trainers.
“I am doing a lot better,” Ingle says. “I have progressed a lot in the last week. It is amazing what a couple of days of rehab can do. Staying here (at the football complex) eight hours a day is definitely helping me out. I have been up here all day ever since I got hurt.”
Jeremy Ingle prepares to snap the football to Jason Campbell.
He has used electrical stimulation and a variety of other treatments to recover from his injury. “I am doing pretty much anything you can think of as far as treatment is concerned for an ankle,” he says. “I am doing ultrasound things, underwater ultrasound. They are pulling out all kind of stops. I am doing a lot of ice and stem. I have started running on it and it is starting to feel really good. I am really happy with the progression.”
Head coach Tommy Tuberville has given Ingle high marks for how he has stepped up and played solid football as a first-year starter. The former walk-on, who came to Auburn from St. James School in Montgomery, originally arrived as an unknown walk-on. His work ethic and on the field performance got him noticed and a move to offense along with continued improvements in size, strength and technique moved him into the starting lineup.
Ingle says that he is having a blast playing football for the Tigers this year. “I love all these guys,” he says. “They are so excited like I am. We really realize what is going on around here. We have to win this game. It is just a must win. We cannot lose this game.
“The main thing is we have to go in there to play to win. We can’t play not-to-lose football. We have to go in there with a mentality to leave it all on the field. I believe if we leave it all on the field, we will win the game.”
Ingle says he is looking forward to the big-game atmosphere for Saturday’s contest, a nationally televised showdown with Georgia, the most talented team in the SEC East.
“It is the same situation as the Tennessee game except we had to sit in the hotel all day and watch everybody talk about how we were going to lose and this, that and the other,” Ingle says. “I kind of hope they keep saying it. I love when people say we are going to lose because it makes me mad and makes me want to get out there and prove my point.
“It is going to be the game of the week in the country and the game of the decade here in Auburn. Since I have been here, this is the biggest game that has ever been here, hands down, without a doubt. We want to go out there and show the nation what Auburn is all about.”
Ingle wanted to be in the game for Auburn’s road win at Ole Miss to clinch the divisional title, but the team doctors and trainers kept him sidelined. “I was mad,” he says. “I wanted to play, but honestly, looking back, I don’t think I could have played. I could have hurt the team. I would rather sit out than do that. Steven (Ross) did a heck of a job of stepping up. I thought he played well the second half. I really hate he got hurt. It is really bad. I talked to him and he is really disappointed, too. We just have to go on.”
Ingle didn’t practice during the off week when the Tigers had light workouts on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. On Sunday, Danny Lindsey ran first team at center, but at the next practice on Tuesday Ingle is scheduled to be back at center with the first team. "The trainers gave me the OK to return to practice," he notes.
“There is no doubt that I am going to play against Georgia,” Ingle says. “I am going to be 100 percent by the game.”