It’s no secret that Auburn struggled mightily at the quarterback position last year and it one of the main reasons that Gene Chizik was fired as head coach two years removed from winning the BCS National Championship, but will Gus Malzahn be able to remedy the situation with much of the same group returning?
Yes, he will. Malzahn comes back to Auburn, after his stint at Arkansas State, where he was the offensive coordinator during Cam Newton’s Heisman winning campaign that culminated with the national title and gets his hand-picked recruit, Kiehl Frazier to mold into a dependable quarterback.
The thought of Frazier lining up behind center may sound crazy to Tigers fans after witnessing Frazier throw eight interceptions in the team’s first five games to only two touchdowns before being benched for the since departed Clint Moseley and later Jonathan Wallace who finished the season as the starter.
The 6-2, 226-pound Frazier comes from Springdale, Ar where Malzahn built his reputation as one of the nation’s top high school coaches and came to Auburn to play in Malzahn’s version of the spread offense, so playing in a system that didn’t cater to his skill-set last year was like jamming a square peg into a round hole. It just wasn’t a good fit, but I am optimistic that Frazier will beat out Wallace and enter the 2013 season as the starting quarterback.
Whether it’s Frazier, Wallace, or incoming freshman and reigning Mr. Alabama, Jeremy Johnson (Montgomery, Al, Carver) behind center, the Tigers absolutely must improve on the seven touchdown passes they got from quarterbacks a year ago compared to 15 interceptions.
Thankfully, Malzahn is in charge of this offense because he is the perfect man for the job, and I have all the confidence in the world that he will get production out of the most important position in the game and have the Tigers back in a bowl game on the strength of the passing game.
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