It seems as if the good news has been few and far between for the Tigers since they last took the field in the Chick-fil-A Bowl at the dome Dec. 31, 2011. The issues come from current and former players and fans.
Starting with the most recent issue, freshman quarterback Zeke Pike was arrested June 23 for public intoxication.
Though this was his first arrest, it was not Pike’s first issue that prevented him to showcase his abundance of offensive talents, as he was suspended for two games in high school.
Another eyesore in the news is the continuance of the Harvey Updyke trial after his reported confession to Plainsman community editor Andrew Yawn. Updyke, the disgruntled Alabama fan who allegedly poisoned the Toomer’s Oaks, will not have his day in court until October or even later.
The four players from the 2010 BCS National Championship team that are accused of armed home-invasion robbery are having their days in court. Antonio Goodwin has already been sentenced to 15 years in prison, with the three trials of Mike McNeil, Shaun Kitchens and Dakota Mosley on the way.
And who could forget the tragedy June 9, when Ladarious Phillips and Ed Christian, former football players, were shot and killed at a party at University Heights. Current player Eric Mack was also shot, but thankfully survived from his injuries.
Putting the tragic and irresponsible off-the-field issues behind them, there are a plethora of question marks on the gridiron that must be answered.
Auburn will attempt to return its program back to the top of the SEC with new coordinators Scot Loeffler and Brian Van Gorder.
Assuming Pike has been taken out of the quarterback race, Loeffler now must choose between the experienced Clint Moseley and the up-and-coming Kiehl Frazier.
Van Gorder will also have his hands full dealing with the depth of his linebackers.
It is time for the black cloud hovering over the Auburn football program to turn to sunshine and touchdowns.
The Auburn family needs to see the hyped-up defensive line wreaking havoc in the backfield. It needs to see Emory Blake pulling in a game-winning touchdown in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
There are less than 70 days until kickoff, and less than 70 days for Auburn to avoid another blemish on the poster-child of its athletic program.
It’s time for Auburn to get down to business.