The second year of the Bryan Harsin era ended with a relatively modest spring game. Although Auburn fans‘ favorite talking point was on full display throughout spring training (the indecisive quarterback battle, of course), it didn’t seem like there were as many drama that there has been in recent years when the main caller is unknown.
Strange, considering what happened a few months ago between Harsin and the athletic department.
There were still several positive things to take away from the spring. Auburn should improve in many different areas, and with the synergy the coaching staff has built with the team, it’s logical to expect a more consistent product from the Tigers in 2022. Consistent, not perfect.
It’s that time of year when we speculate and ask questions about the upcoming season. What are the areas of concern for Auburn?
Here are five questions we have about the Tigers this offseason.
Can run blocking improve?
Auburn has struggled to get a consistent push in recent seasons. A little expected, given how the old coaching staff recruited from the trenches.
As Tank Bigsby enters what is likely his final season on the Plains, Auburn needs to find a way to get him to touch more and open more holes up front. With the Tigers’ incredible experience, they should be able to make at least marginal improvements on the pitch.
Who will be the quarterback?
We probably won’t know until the end of fall camp. Zach Calzada, TJ Finley and Robby Ashford all have individual traits that would deserve a starting role in Harsin’s attack, but there hasn’t been a clear separation between the QBs yet and there won’t be before. some time.
All we can do is look at last year’s statistics, speculate and predict.
Can Auburn’s secondary tighten up?
The Tigers were 99th nationally in opponent completion percentage (64.2%) in 2021, a number that will have to drop if Auburn is to stay in more games this season. Limiting completions will create better opportunities for the pass rush on third down.
With corner lock Roger McCreary gone in the NFL, it will be interesting to see how Auburn’s secondary adjusts.
Will there be better decision making?
Auburn got themselves into a few tough spots last season as a result of questionable calls or play decisions.
Now that Harsin has a year under his belt, it would be logical to assume that he learned to time things better at the SEC. Whether it’s a fixed game, a third call or a call to give keys to certain players.
How many wins will it take?
How many games does Bryan Harsin have to win to earn the respect of the ruling powers at Auburn? Is it eight? Is it just “making yourself eligible for bowling?” Does it revolve around beating a rival?
The bar that needs cleaning looks, well, unclear to those looking on the outside.
Harsin recently went public that he thinks his team is underrated and underrated. How that translates on the pitch is currently a mystery.
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