Gene Chizik is probably longing for Wednesday right about now. Before his Auburn Tigers went out and got smoked by Ole Miss 41-20 Saturday, before the Rebels’ 16-game conference losing streak was snapped, and before his record since winning the national championship slipped to 9-10, he was still on the hot seat, but Wednesday has to look downright tranquil now.
The Auburn Tigers are now 0-4 in SEC play this year and 1-5 overall. They have been truly atrocious on offense, ranking 117th in scoring ahead of only Tulane, Florida Atlantic, South Alabama, and UMass. Two of those teams (South Alabama and UMass) are in their first year of FBS play.
On Wednesday, Auburn fans still had faint hope that quarterback Clint Moseley could inject some life into Auburn’s offense. That didn’t happen Saturday, though. Moseley went 11 for 18 passing for 112 yards and one interception. That’s not any better than former starter Kiehl Frazier had been doing, and the results for Auburn were exactly the same.
So yeah, Chizik is on the hot seat. Big time.
One would have thought that Chizik had a plan in place for when former OC Gus Malzahn finally took a head coaching job, as he did this past offseason at Arkansas State. Apparently not, however. I don’t think anyone thought Auburn’s quarterback play would remain on the same level after Cam Newton left, but things have dropped off a cliff. And thanks to this helpful tweet, you can see how far:
In case you don’t remember, 2008 was when former coach Tommy Tuberville was fired, or stepped down depending on whom you asked after ten years as Auburn’s coach. This was under extremely similar circumstances to 2012, when the offense was historically awful. Tuberville brought in offensive guru Tony Franklin and promptly hamstrung his playcalling, changed his offense, and fired him after seven games. I don’t think Gene Chizik has a scapegoat like that in 2012.
In a league as “good” as the SEC, there have to be teams bad enough to offset the highly-ranked ones. The NFL is similar in that way. Every year there are three elite teams and three doormats. Auburn is usually not one of those teams, especially after winning a national championship just two seasons ago.
But in the 19 games since beating Oregon, Auburn is now 9-10 and definitely one of the conference doormats. Not to worry Auburn fans, some good coach will want that job.