Tre’ Williams came to Auburn as a five-star recruit from St. Paul’s Episcopal School in 2014. In the blink of an eye, Williams is preparing for his senior season the Plains, and there’s still much to do, according to the Mobile native.
After climbing up national and conference ranks as a defense last season, Williams is looking for more in the 2017 season.
“We set the bar last year,” Williams said. “With Coach (Kevin) Steele coming in, he really set the bar of expectations. Now, we have to be above and beyond that.
“I still feel like we have a lot to work on from last year because we didn’t win the SEC championship or the national championship, so we’re still not as good as we should be. That is what we are working towards now.”
Auburn began fall camp on Monday, and Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn said Williams has already made his presence known with his teammates.
“Tre’ is one of our team leaders. He’s a guy that earned that,” Malzahn said. “He’s been so consistent since he’s been here, from a character standpoint, a work ethic standpoint. He’s battled some injuries, but when he’s been healthy, he has played at a very high level.
“He’s like a coach on the field. I’m proud to call him a team leader, and he has earned that.”
Over his first three seasons on the Plains, Williams has accumulated 138 tackles, 7.5 of which were for a loss in 36 games. However, Williams’ position coach is quick to remind him about something missing from his résumé.
“We haven’t had an All-SEC linebacker since coach T-Will (Travis Williams) was here, and he reminds us of that every day,” Williams said. “Until the day we get an All-SEC linebacker or a few of us be All-SEC, then I feel like we’ve done something. So as of now, we still have a lot of work to do.”
The Tigers’ defense will have major holes to fill after several key departures, such as Carl Lawson, Montravius Adams and Rudy Ford, from a year ago. Williams has taken it upon himself to step up and help take control of this Auburn team.
“(We have) a lot of shoes to fill,” the 6-foot-2, 225-pound linebacker said. “Since Carl (Lawson) and Mon(travius) (Adams) left, I’ve got to step up and be a leader of this team, not only the defense, but the whole team.”
With many expectations looming around his final year at Auburn, Williams is ready to meet those expectations, and take Auburn to a place it hasn’t been since 2013.
“I want the best for this team,” Williams said. “I want us to get what we deserve and make it all the way to the SEC Championship, national championship.
“We worked way too hard for a very long time and brought this team back to where it used to be back in the day with all the guys who laid the foundation for us, so now it’s on us to finish.”