AUBURN – Auburn’s football team returned to the practice field Sunday and amped up preparations for Friday’s Iron Bowl against Alabama at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa.
And Tiger head coach Gene Chizik came away pleased.
“I thought they had a lot of energy,” Chizik said. “I thought they were crisp. I thought they were really focused. I thought it was a really good night.”
For the No. 2 Tigers (11-0, 7-0) last Saturday’s bye was welcome after 11 consecutive games, but Chizik said it won’t mean major changes.
“With having a couple of extra days of practice, we are a little bit ahead,” Chizik said. “But we do what we do. It’s not like we are inventing new things here and there. Now it’s about us. It’s about us executing things better. It’s about the same plays executed better. We’ve really been able to look back and see what we haven’t been as successful on as we would like and things we have been good at.
More from Chizik’s meeting with reporters after Sunday’s practice:
On preparing for the noise at Bryant-Denny
“Really and truly, it’s more of an offensive problem. All year, we go into the indoor (facility) and try to play crowd noise, something loud whether it’s crowd noise, music or whatever. The bottom line is you communicate by hand signals and things of that nature.”
On tailbacks contribution to running game
“You mesh the two together and it’s a very effective run game. It’s not one guy or one position. I will say it again: Everything starts with the offensive line. You can’t have that success at either position without guys being able to play well up front. It’s been a good thing to watch our offensive line develop like it has and to have success at a couple of positions running the ball.”