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Jacobs and Dye’s Emails to the Auburn Family

Regardless of what these say, and they both do kind of make me feel good about the situation, I still don’t think that our coaching situation should have to come to a past coach (my favorite of all time) and our Athletics Director justifying the hire to the Auburn people in a mass email.

I keep going back to the fact that “money is not an obstacle,” yet most of our candidates were people that I could have paid their salary myself. All that being said, I’m starting to lean back towards backing Jacobs after I heard the statements from my new least favorite Auburn alum, Charles Barkley (more on that Wednesday). Anyway, read what landed in my inbox tonight, after the jump as they say.

The first is from Jacobs; the second from Coach Dye.

December 15, 2008

Dear Auburn family,

We began our search for a new head coach with a few fundamentally important criteria.

We wanted to find a man who would be the right fit for Auburn University. We wanted to find a man who would be committed to Auburn for years to come.

We wanted someone with head coaching experience that would give our current student-athletes the best chance to compete next year.

We wanted someone who would represent Auburn with character, class and integrity, who would coach our student-athletes to be successful on the field, in the classroom and in the game of life.

We found our man in Gene Chizik.

I thought it would be important for me to share what I saw in Coach Chizik in his time at Auburn and again during the interview process, and why I believe without a doubt that he is the right man for Auburn.

Most importantly, Coach Chizik is a man of exceptional character and integrity who epitomizes what we should all want in a head coach. During his three years at Auburn, I saw first-hand how his words always matched his deeds.

I saw his passion, his relentless work ethic and his burning desire to teach the game of football and build young men of character who will be successful students and good citizens.

Throughout the search process, we interviewed a strong group of candidates, but Coach Chizik clearly rose to the top. Everyone we talked with about Coach Chizik spoke about his impeccable character, relentless work ethic, his relationships with his players and his ability to motivate them.

During his time at Auburn as defensive coordinator, Coach Chizik was named the nation’s top assistant coach. He was a part of back-to-back undefeated seasons at Auburn and then Texas, where his defense helped lead the Longhorns to a national championship.

While Coach Chizik was clearly still in the process of building the program at Iowa State, he had a blueprint that he never deviated from and was continuing to build upon.

Of all the coaches we interviewed, Coach Chizik best understood where Auburn is and where we can be. He outlined a clear plan for the future that will put us into position to consistently compete for championships.

Other important factors that weighed heavily in my decision were Coach Chizik’s experience competing in the Southeastern Conference and his reputation as a relentless recruiter.

Coach Chizik is well known and highly respected among high school coaches throughout the Southeast and beyond. Those relationships will be invaluable during the recruiting process.

I also wanted to share a few final thoughts about the search process we just concluded. We began with a list of six top candidates and worked diligently to find out which man was the best fit for Auburn.

We did not talk to any coaches without first going through the proper channels and following the proper protocol. That is the way we are going to conduct business now and in the future, regardless of what is said or written.

The search to find the right man for Auburn reminded me how fortunate we are to be a part of something bigger than any one of us. We have an opportunity to impact the lives of countless student-athletes and to bring credit to Auburn University on the football field and far beyond.

In closing, please know that whatever differences we may have about the best way to get where we all want to go, I personally appreciate the passion, devotion and love you have for Auburn University. As a former football player and as your Athletics Director, I share that passion for, and belief in, Auburn.

Just imagine how strong we will be if we can all pull in the same direction, united in our belief that Auburn is a special place that we are all blessed to be a small part of now and forever.

Bright days are ahead for Auburn football, and it will be exciting to experience it together.

Thank you for your support of our new coach, our student-athletes and your University.

God bless, and War Eagle!

Jay Jacobs
Director of Athletics

Auburn Family,

I woke up this morning with Auburn on my mind, which is not surprising since I went to sleep with Auburn on my mind.

This is a very emotional time for the Auburn family. We all have our own opinions about what is best for Auburn and about the impact that Auburn decisions will have on our lives.

I don’t expect everyone who reads this to agree with everything I say, but I just want you to know what I feel in my heart.   This time of transition we are going through now reminds me of the time in 1981 when I walked into a room full of football players who had many questions and doubts about me coming in as the new head football coach.

Their frustration showed in their faces, and anxiety was in their eyes because of the unknown. I had a simple message: Whether they had come to Auburn for the right reasons or the wrong reasons, they had chosen to get their education and to play football at Auburn University, which would lay the foundation for the rest of their lives.

I told them that Auburn had chosen me and that I had chosen Auburn.  I asked them as a team to be loyal to Auburn and to love Auburn. I said that I would also be loyal to Auburn and would love Auburn, and this loyalty and love would be our common ground which would lay the foundation that would serve Auburn for many years to come.

There is a lot of misinformation out there right now. The media people have their jobs to do and should have our respect for doing those jobs.  But unless an individual has served as president of a major university, has been on the board of trustees of a major university, or has been athletic director or head football coach at a major university, it is hard to grasp how the people in these positions make the decisions that affect so many.

Unless you have walked in their shoes, you cannot begin to understand all that is involved in the process of making these decisions.

In addressing the current situation pertaining to our Athletic Director, Jay Jacobs, and his decision to hire Gene Chizik as our new Head Coach, I applaud all parties involved in the process for allowing Jay Jacobs to do his job.

Nobody is more qualified to make this decision than Jay. He is a true Auburn man to the bone and understands better than anybody the kind of man we need to lead our football program into the future. Gene Chizik is that man.

Because of the years I was involved in football – as a player, an assistant coach, a head coach, and as a part of teams that won championships at every level – I learned something about winning. One thing I am sure of is that I know what it takes to win. Teams where everyone played with the same heartbeat had a chance to win championships; teams that were not able to play like that never reached their full potential.

We don’t need to worry about what is going on around us. We only need to be concerned about what is going on at Auburn. And being the best we can be at Auburn will take care of what is going on around us. We are an Auburn family. Let’s see if we can play with the same heartbeat.

I know winning is important to the Auburn people. But so is character. Jay Jacobs has it and so does Gene Chizik. Now we’ll see if they can win. They are our team. I like it. War Eagle.

Coach Pat Dye

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trigger 12/15/2008 at 11:19 pm

Let me start by saying I support Coach Chizik. I became more impressed with him after his press conference earlier. However, I’m not impressed with Jay Jacobs. I don’t agree with the hire, but CGC is OUR coach and I will support him to the fullest. Just remember Jay Jacobs that you are on my short list!

Wildfire 12/16/2008 at 7:25 am

There is an old saying (and if there isn’t, well then there should be) that you can put frosting and sprinkles on a turd, but its still a turd. I think thats what these two emails are, frosting and sprinkles, and the “Powers that Be” are trying to pass it off to the Auburn Family as a cupcake.

I could get off a plane waiving and smiling and giving the thumbs-up, but that doesn’t mean I am gonna make a good coach. I think if it had been Turner Gill, Will Muschamp, Steve Spurrier or any of the other candidates, you would have seen more than 100-200 people out there to welcome him to town.

Anyway, I am not buying into it. I don’t like what Auburn has become. Its not the Auburn I grew up loving. Everything that we bash Bama for, is exactly what we are becoming.

To Jay Jacobs, Coach Dye and the rest of the Good Ol Boys… quit offering me a turd with sprinkles.

Pastor Claybo 12/16/2008 at 9:50 am

I have been an Auburn fan my entire life, and that is thirty three years to be exact. I have to admit that I have never been hurt more in my entire life by this. The Auburn Nation never got a say so, and if we voiced our opinions they didn’t matter. I am not in support of this new hire. He left us once before, and he needs to leave again. As for the press conference, all I got out of it was a coach who is full of himself. He said numerous times that He was the right coach for Auburn. We needed a coach with a proven success record as a head coach, but we bring in a guy over one good season at Auburn in the past as our defensive coordinator? We get rid of a coach who has one bad season, and yet he won over 80 games during his time at Auburn. I honestly don’t see our current coach winning that many games during his “short” career. I have lost a TREMENDOUS amount of respect for Auburn. I would say we made a mistake, but I wasn’t a part of this choosing. Mr Chizik aka “Cheezestick” left once before, so they need to fire up the jet and fly him right back out of Auburn. We don’t want him. We needed a coach who can compete with Alabama who is now officially a “powerhouse” and a coach with a 5-19 record just isn’t going to get that done. I honestly feel the people should get a say so. At least I got a say so with our current president elect, but as for Auburn’s coach we never got a say so, and for that fact I am not going to sit quietly. You will here me and countless others rant and rave until this man is done at Auburn. We want a coach with a proven record who knows how to win. If those in charge at Auburn need some help then I am sure there are thousands of Auburn fans who can help them out. One other thing, they claimed money was no object, so that means waste money on a loser? What a joke. For all those football teams out there looking for a new coach, well coming to a department store near you its called “Coach in a Box” just wind him up and see where he goes or doesn’t go or does or doesn’t do. We just got one, and its the best Christmas present we could have ever gotten…NOT!!! Take it back to the store, because they all accept Christmas returns. Get us a WINNER!!!

Pastor Claybo 12/16/2008 at 9:54 am

Hey Wildfire…your comments OWN me. You are awesome, and quite hilarious. Keep them coming.

Wildfire 12/16/2008 at 11:10 am

Pastor Claybo,

I am in 100% agreement with you. Lets hope they make better decisions on their next coaching search in 2 years.

trigger 12/16/2008 at 2:31 pm

Pastor Claybo,

“I honestly feel the people should get a say so.”

If it were the BCS we were talking about I would respond with but I agree with you. I think Chizik is just as much the victim of this whole deal as the Auburn Family. He’s a dead man walking. What aggravates me are Auburn fans that sit back and take whatever this administration gives us. We are standing behind Auburn by voicing our opinions. The ones who do nothing are the ones letting this administration tear the university apart! Like I said earlier we should support CGC but we don’t have to support the administration that hired him.


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