The college football season is approaching. Each SEC team will be previewed before the season. Here is the 2022 SEC Football Preview: Auburn Tigers.
2021 Record: 6-7 (3-5), 6th in West
L vs Houston in Birmingham Bowl
Bryan Harsin’s first year in Auburn didn’t go the greatest. Setback by some injuries the Tigers finished just 6-6 with a loss to Houston in the Birmingham Bowl. On top of that starting quarterback, Bo Nix transferred after the season meaning backup TJ Finley will need to build upon his 2021 numbers or else they’ll need to rely on a transfer.
The Tigers started off in contention of the SEC West title with wins against ranked Arkansas and ranked Ole Miss. The season would ultimately end in disappointment however highlighted with losses to South Carolina and Mississippi State.
Battle Against Adversity
The Auburn football program hasn’t been in the news cycle for the right reasons in recent years. There was controversy leading up to the initial Bryan Harsin hire. And the offseason hasn’t been forgiving either. Harsin is now on his third offensive coordinator and second defensive coordinator despite entering his second season.
Losing starting the starting quarterback from 2021 to Oregon hasn’t helped matters. The quarterback battle between TJ Finley and transfer Zach Calzada will likely determine a lot of their success. The good news is they return one of the SEC’s best backfields in Tank Bigsby (1st Team All-SEC) and Jarquez Hunter.
Harsin is back with his former Boise State defensive coordinator Jeff Schmedding. Schmedding will be without a handful of defensive playmakers from 2021. He’s without Roger McCreary and Smoke Monday from the secondary as well as linebackers Zakoby McClain and Chandler Wooten. Still, the secondary has adequate replacements, if the defense can meet the challenge Auburn could build on last year’s successful start.
There will be plenty of pressure on Harsin and company in 2022. The controversy exposed in the offseason fast-forwards the staff’s hot seat. The offense likely being a ground and pound style doesn’t set them up well for shootouts with some lethal SEC West offenses. A lot will depend on the strength of a largely unproven defense.
“From Our Haus to Yours”