In an effort to bring you unending thoughts about Auburn sports, I give you a new feature called “The View From Up Here”. In short, a buddy of the ‘Blogler has gotten very lucky and is “dating-in” to a pair of season tickets in the skyboxes at Jordan-Hare. Every week he will give us his thoughts on how the game looked behind a piece of glass, in the air conditioning, and with a butler handing him drinks. Let him know what you think.Week 1 – Louisiana Tech
by Leroy Jenkins
Hello fellow WarBlogles, Leroy Jenkins here with my take on the first Auburn game.
I am fortunate enough to have season tickets in the luxury suites at Jordan Hare this year. I wanted to give some of you “regular” people a glimpse of what it’s like to watch a game in “luxury,” and give my thoughts on the game itself.
I arrived at the stadium about 30 minutes prior to kickoff. We were greeted by several lovely young ladies wearing blue Auburn blazers. We took the elevator up to our level (that’s right we didn’t have to climb the ramps) and were ushered to our suite. Upon entering the suite my first impression was that it kind of looked like a hotel room. There was a private bathroom, kitchen, and several televisions on the top level. Below that, there were four rows of four seats (theatre style). The glass windows separating us from the field were large and very clean. We had catered food and beverage as well. The food was very good, and we had all the free beer you could drink. The down side of the box was that we couldn’t really hear the crowd very well. I didn’t feel the energy of the other fans. I would best describe the atmosphere as watching a game on TV with about 20 friends. When we cheered we could only hear us cheer. That would be my only gripe about sitting in a luxury box. The suites at most NFL stadiums are better because they have 16 seats that are actually outside of the glass, and you can walk in and out of the box. The most wonderful thing about it (besides the free beer) was that I could see the entire field very well. Because of the theatre style seating, nobody’s big head was blocking my view.
Now, on to the game itself…
I felt like this Auburn team was miles ahead of last year’s team in the first game. We ran the ball very well, and showed a lot of promise through the air. Chris Todd still does not look like a guy that “can throw a ball through a car wash without getting it wet.” He did however show a lot of improvement over where he was last season. However, we all know that McCalleb stole the show Saturday night. His blazing speed and ability to hit the corner is very impressive for a freshman running back. I certainly wouldn’t call him the next McFadden just yet, but he shows a lot of promise. Our wide receivers have been an area of concern all preseason, and they still are in my opinion. Zachary had a few really nice plays, but other than that I wasn’t that impressed. Benton ran several bad routes that cost us at least one first down. Freshman mistakes I know, but that is something we are going to have to correct in order to truly compete in the SEC. The biggest disappointment to me was Mario Fannin. This guy is probably our best player, and he really didn’t do much. He fumbled a punt return, and dropped a few long passes (even though he got lit up). He is a great weapon for our offense, but we are going to need him to step it up some in the weeks to come. Speaking of weapons, the main thing I noticed about this coaching staff is their ability to use our weapons effectively. Franklin and Tubbs didn’t seem to know what to do with the players that we had last year. This staff used our playmakers very well. Mixing Burns in at the Wildcat position is a good wrinkle. His ability to throw as well is going to cause some havoc on opposing defenses. With Tate and McCalleb as a one two punch at running back, defenses will be breathing harder after each successive down.
So in summary, I still feel like this team has a lot to improve on in order to be great, but I can see a lot of improvement over last years debacle. Only time will tell if this years Auburn team is going to make some noise in the SEC West.