Tigers Work on Game Day Details at Scrimmage

Ted Roof

An Auburn football report with comments from Gene Chizik, Ted Roof and Michael Goggans is featured.

Auburn, Ala.--Auburn defensive coordinator Ted Roof says that one of the areas of focus for the scrimmage was game-day coaching mechanics.

The Tigers worked on communication between the press box and the sidelines and between the other coaches on the sidelines. This season will be the first time this group has worked together in a game situation.

Roof had cornerbacks coach Phillip Lolley as the defensive spotter in the press box. Running backs coach Curtis Luper handled the same assignment for the offense.

Phillip Lolley

Curtis Luper

The defensive coordinator notes that the team also worked on getting substitutes into the game quickly and the other details that are essential to game management.

The scrimmage was different than the previous two, with no players allowed to be tackled to the ground. It was also a situation scrimmage with a good bit of the work done against scout team players although there was some ones vs. ones.

Michael Goggans, a returning starter at defensive end, notes in a scrimmage like the one on Saturday in which the defenders can't tackle ball carriers to the ground (thud), the offense has an advantage because defenders aren't allowed to dive after runners to make stops and a play that would normally be a one-yard gain might become a three or four yard play because of that.

Goggans, who has been cross-training at tackle, played that position Saturday. He notes that his position coach, Tracy Rocker, wanted to get a look at how the junior handled playing inside.

Like Goggans, head coach Gene Chizik notes that it was not a typical scrimmage. "Today was a procedural day, we did more situations today than anything with the officials out there just trying to get as many game-like situations as we can.

"It was not a real physical day today, it was more of a mental day and a procedural day with coaches in the press box, coaches down on headphones, figuring out who is doing what procedurally," Chizik adds.

Auburn's first-year head coach says, "I think we got accomplished what we wanted to get accomplished. We are going to have great film on what we were not doing well. It was apparent that there was a lot we were not doing well, but we got great teaching tools and we got out of today what we wanted."

With opening night two weeks away, Chizik says the Tigers still have plenty to get done.

"We feel like we are still doing a lot of teaching with our offense and defense and now we are kind of switching gears to putting us in situations where we are running our offense and defense," he says. "We are putting them in every situation that we can get in on a Saturday and we are not sharp at it. We have the basic idea, but the urgency and concentration levels, I think we are really behind on."

The coach also notes that the staff is continuing to get input to figure out a depth chart for opening night when Louisiana Tech comes to Jordan-Hare Stadium. "I think we are probably 90 percent there," he notes. "We have to take a lot of things into consideration like the situation with injuries with our team and things of that nature, but we are getting close."

The Tigers are scheduled to return to practice on Sunday afternoon and will take the day off on Monday.

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