The kickoff return team is a punching bag. In 2009, the special teams were not very good, almost to the point that some fans wanted Jay Boulware fired. Last season, they were the most improved unit on the team, and to begin this year, they were just as good. Field goals and punts have remained the most consistent units on the team (which is better than some teams can say), and punt returns still follow the same “just catch the ball” routine, but kick off returns have become downright dangerous.
Tre Mason showed huge promise with a return for a touchdown earlier this season, but since then, especially in the last three or four games, it seems that Auburn can’t get a guy past the 20 yard line with his head still attached. Have opposing coaches found a huge seam in the blocking schemes that they continue to exploit? I have no idea, but I have never seen anything like this. It’s one thing to just not be very good at returning the kick for many yards, but to have the returner absolutely obliterated every time is totally different.