A-Day, Auburn University’s annual spring game, is a chance for all of the hard work accomplished through spring practice to pay off for the Auburn football players and coaches as well as provide an opportunity for fans to get a sneak preview of what is in store for the 2012 season.
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Auburn’s A-Day 2012, was unique from A-Days of recent years. Since the 2011 season, the Auburn coaching staff has acquired three new coaches—including both an offensive and defensive coordinator. Therefore, Auburn fans were anxious to see the new schemes prepared by the coaches and players.
Aside from the coaching changes, another unique factor about A-Day 2012 was the Heisman ceremony that took place prior to the game. The celebration honored Auburn’s three Heisman Trophy winners who are Pat Sullivan, Bo Jackson and Cam Newton. Statues were placed outside the west side of Jordan-Hare stadium to commemorate the accomplishments and legacy that Sullivan, Jackson and Newton left at Auburn. In front of a crowd of thousands, after each one gave his appreciation speech, the recipients individually unveiled their statues as the crowd erupted.
Throughout all the events taking place on campus, the Auburn Athletics Complex was as busy as ever. With spring recruiting in full gear, the Auburn coaches and staff were steadily handling the crowd of prospective student-athletes who had come to town for the game. Auburn wide receivers coach, Trooper Taylor, was as pumped up about the ceremony as anyone else. Although he wasn’t able to attend the ceremony in person, Taylor watched every moment of it from the athletic complex.
According to Taylor the statues point towards the bright future that he sees for Auburn. “The statues are a foundation for new people to come and keep the same thing going on.” Taylor quoted Athletic Director, Jay Jacobs, in regards to his hopes to have many more Heisman statues join the three standing now. “We left enough room over there just to get it started,” said Jacobs.
The current football players were also roaming through the athletic complex after their met after their pre-game walk-thru and position meetings. The players seemed to be equally excited to show off their hard work and promote their new coordinators and coaches.
Current safety, Demetruce McNeal, said that he was looking forward competing with each other on A-Day. “I’m looking forward to showing the new coaches what we have to bring for this fall, and for Clemson and for all the other opponents that we have to play.” McNeal’s advice for A-Day’s fans was simple, “Just sit back and enjoy the day. We are and we are going to do our best because we know we aren’t going to get this day back.”