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A spirit that is not afraid

Plainsman Picks: Alabama

Auburn University takes on the University of Alabama on Nov. 27, 2021, in Auburn, Ala.
Auburn University takes on the University of Alabama on Nov. 27, 2021, in Auburn, Ala.

The Tigers have a big challenge this week as they hit the road for the 87th edition of the Iron Bowl. After watching a 10-0 lead dissolve in a four-overtime loss in 2021, Auburn heads to Tuscaloosa with a six-win season and a bowl appearance hanging in the balance. 

Here's how our staff picked the game:

Callie Stanford, Sports Editor: Alabama 38-20


"While I think Auburn is almost always going to be capable of beating Alabama, this probably isn't the year. It would be a different game in the confines of Jordan-Hare Stadium, but I think an unhappy Tide team and fanbase will not let the Tigers march into Tuscaloosa and end their season in embarrassment. 

I think Cadillac's emphasis on the run game can make Auburn competitive and the defense will certainly show out, but it takes more than sheer will and average success to down the Tide. At the end of the day, the Tigers are able to compete but not enough to win the football game...but let's not forget that anything is possible."

Noah Griffith, Assistant Sports Editor: Auburn 28-26


"I have had this opinion since Auburn hired Cadillac, ask others on our staff. I think Auburn has been hungry all along, but the execution and cohesion is finally there. I know this seems crazy, and I know beating Alabama is no easy task, even in a year when it actually looks flawed. Texas A&M showed it: the Tide are exposable; yes, even in Bryant-Denny. Give me Ja'Varrius Johnson with a 120-yard game with two touchdowns, and Tank Bigsby and Jarquez Hunter combine for 250 yards in an upset for the ages."

Jacob Waters, Sports Reporter: Alabama 31-10


"The Iron Bowl almost always has some bizarre moment to it, but I don't think that will be the case this year. Auburn's amped up under interim head coach Cadillac Williams and is clearly motivated to give its all for him, but I don't think that is enough to defeat Nick Saban and his squad. Auburn's only source of offense is running the ball, and unfortunately for the Tigers, Alabama ranks inside the top-20 nationally in opponent rushing yards per game.

If this game was in Jordan-Hare Stadium I think it could be similar to last year's Iron Bowl where Auburn narrowly lost, but it's in Tuscaloosa this season. I think Auburn will keep this close through halftime, much like the 2018 Iron Bowl, but without a home crowd cheering it on, will get fatigued and fall to Alabama who is quietly still in the playoff hunt."

Destini Ambus, Editor-in-Chief: Alabama 36-20

"No explanation just vibes." 


Matthew Wallace, Sports Writer: Alabama 34-17

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"Auburn could make this game interesting for a while but in the end, Alabama's talent and depth will be too much for the Tigers to overcome. It doesn't help Auburn that the game is in Tuscaloosa, where the Tigers have only won once in Nick Saban's Alabama tenure. Auburn has had much greater success rushing the ball over the past three games, but Alabama's defense only gives up 107.8 rush yards per game, 14th in the country. If Auburn can't get the ground game going, it will be very tough for the Tigers to pull an upset."

Patrick Bingham, Sports Writer: Auburn 22-20


“When I think about Saturday’s matchup it reminds me a lot of last year’s Iron Bowl. The Tiger defense will be tasked with slowing down Bryce Young and the high flying Alabama offense. If that can happen, like last year, the major question will be if Auburn can muster up enough points to win. It will be much more difficult to do that in Tuscaloosa. With rain in the forecast, which certainly favors Auburn’s run first offense, I think if the Tigers can establish the run game and win the time of possession battle it will certainly be a four quarter ball game and maybe just a magical ending to this season's Cadillac Williams story.”

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