And oh, what a year it’s been.
For such a small town, Auburn made big news time and again. From the victorious to the wacky to the tragic, the Loveliest Village was on the map this year. And of course, the Plainsman was there every step of the way.
Following a mediocre season that ended in one of the wildest overtime finishes in Outback Bowl History, who could have predicted our Tigers would be crowned National Champions just one year later?
Then came No. 2, No. 90 and one of the most resilient teams in Auburn history. A season that produced more than several heart-pounding moments of anxiety culminated in a crystal football being lifted over the Plains.
But far before the victorious joy of the championship had worn off, we were given the news that our beloved oaks had been poisoned.
Triumph turned to tragedy, but in the ensuing days, it produced goodwill—the likes of which the state had never seen —between Auburn and our rival.
Perhaps a rivalry more alive than ever will emerge out of death.
While the tree poisoning was a historic tragedy, Auburn faced even greater tragedies in the deaths of its family members.
Just as the craze of Spring Break was winding down, the student body was hit with the shocking news that two of its students had passed.
This came less than a semester after the loss of Dean Marie Wooten and the legendary icon Dean James Foy.
And the semester would not end before a shooting at Southern Union’s campus rattled the community.
Not all news was triumphant and tragic though.
Some even bordered on the humorous.
The Plainsman managed to offend the entire Greek community with less effort than it takes to swallow three Cocoa Krispees, and overnight Kelly Tsaltas became a household name.
Controversy wasn’t only created by the Plainsman.
WEGL had a managerial shakeup.
Smokers suddenly became an oppressed minority under attack by grandstanding University officials.
The Auburn University Republicans chair made some shady money moves.
And to the chagrin of partygoers everywhere, the over-caffeinated 4 Loko beverage lost a bit of its buzz.
Some news just made the reader go, “Awwww.”
The first football game was not only the debut of Cam, but also love was cemented as a marriage proposal happened before 87,000 fans at the 50-yard-line.
Meanwhile, Kirby Turnage rode a popular wave to electoral victory with a smile wider than the front page of The Plainsman.
Football players got arrested and a basketball player punched a cop.
Speakeasy closed while the Balcony Bar and Moe’s Barbecue popped its top.
If this year showed anything, it’s that this quaint college town is anything but sleepy.
Things changed and traditions continued.
No matter what the story was, though, it was always an Auburn story.
A year of news is in the books, and next year’s got a lot to live up to.
Somehow, we don’t think it’ll have any trouble.
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