Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Works, Khrisodi Burn-Stodd-style

I will say this for our two weeks of Khrisodi Burn-Stodd being separated into his two separate quarterbacks: it did help draw at least a little more interest into the other stories around Auburn. We have a defense! Who knew?!?

Now we're back to "all quarterbacking, all the time," though, at least with quality results from Grotus Acorn:

Last year was the sheer idiocy of burning Burns' redshirt merely to light a fire under a sub-par, injury-plagued, broken-spirited quarterback with little-to-no arm strength. Kodi was the crown jewel of our recruiting class, and pffft went an entire year of his elegibility - for what? A steady dose of Evil Brandon and - in what really bites us in the ass - a backup quarterback with incredible physical gifts who sat on the bench gaining zilch for experience. Which is how we find ourselves in this unenviable position this season of an incredibly gifted quarterback who has exactly zilch for experience. Enter Chris Todd and it's second verse, same as the first - an entire year of Kodi "Mr. Spread Offense" Burns' eligibility will be sacrificed to yet another statuesque, duck-lobbing, decision-challenged white boy with an injury problem. And next year, we're still going to be starting from scratch with Kodi and we're still going to be deficient in effective field leadership.
Man, ain't that the truth.

Though to be fair, Todd was adequate-if-not-better against LSU and got off to a sharp start against Tennessee, leading the TD drive and staying blameless for the failure of the other three first-half drives under his watch: two were ruined by holding penalties and the other ended on the Rod Smith drop. According to Franklin Todd was a play away from being "perfect" up to that point and it's pretty clear reading between the lines at that link he wasn't thrilled with Tubby's decision to send Burns on. Acid Reign opines that the solid beginning was enough to keep Todd as the starter for now:
Ultimately, it's ill-advised to yank a young starter after one bad half, particularly when the calls and the rest of the offense failed as well. Burns deserves more snaps, and should have a chance to run the whole offense. The coaches made the decision they had to make. Todd starts, but we should see Burns some.

There's also the little matter to consider--as AR points out--that Burns has been far from perfect when he's gotten his opportunities. Of course, that may also be a function of his lack of opportunities in the first place:
"When the lights have flipped on, he's gone through one progression and taken off and run," Franklin said. "I think he gets caught up in the enthusiasm and the hoo-rah and everybody is 'Kodi, Kodi, Kodi,' and the adrenaline takes over. You can't let it happen. As a quarterback, you can't ever get emotional. You've got to just be cool. You've got to be level all the way through. You've got to handle adversity and you've got to handle prosperity."

Tuberville said Burns will get better as he gains more game experience.

"Sometimes he just gets too excited," Tuberville said. "That's typical. He hasn't been out there in a game like that. That's his first real big game of the year."
Which is why, as much as I sympathize with Todd, Tubby's decision here is the right one. Burns has to play, come hell or high water. Grotus hits the nail on the proverbial head: what's the point in sacrificing the future for the present when the present's barely any better for the sacrifice anyway?

And, for the record, I don't buy "he got yanked" as an excuse for Todd's second-half malaise. If he had no idea it was coming, if Tubby hadn't taken him aside and said "Look, we're going to work Kodi in this week" at some point, yeah, that's a problem, but come on: Todd had to know this was coming sometime. I'm not sure his in-out-in-out routine has been any easier than Burns's, has it?

Scenes from a troubled marriage. Man, I'm just not sure this is working: So why did Auburn start the second half with Kodi Burns at quarterback?

"Because that was what the head coach wanted to do," Franklin said.

Head coach Tommy Tuberville's version: "It was a mutual (decision)."
Yikes. But let's continue:
"There's the 'Tony Franklin Offense' that I've run most of my adult life, since the Kentucky days, of being able to go and freely do whatever," said Franklin ... "This is definitely not that."
Um ... yeah. Believe it or not, the worst is still to come, though:
"We don't understand what it means to play fast. We think we do, but we don't," Franklin said. "We're going to continue probably to slow down to try and get where we can do what these guys can do -- rather than what people have been able to do in the past. I've got to do what these guys are capable of doing."
Sigh. A big part of me wants to nod my head in agreement with the Auburner's cutting response--I guess those Kentucky and Troy players spoiled him?--though I think it's hard to genuinely accuse him of deflecting blame when the guy has heaped blame on himself from the moment the season started. (Though the Pigskin Pathos maybe sees this as just another kind of problem.)

The bottom line is this: whatever Tubby told Franklin in terms of his autonomy when he hired him, surely Franklin wasn't under any illusions that said autonomy would endure past going without an offensive touchdown at Mississippi St. and rushing for 1.9 a carry in a loss against LSU. Franklin had the entire offseason to make sure the offense was ready; it wasn't. This is his bed and he's going to have to lie in it--or, even better, fight his way out of it.

Pretty pictures. Auburn YouTube legend A96 has a Tennessee highlight package out:

but when "defensive lineman falling unmolested on ribbon-wrapped botched handoff for touchdown" is one of the biggest highlights of the clip, this is probably just best used as an excuse to link to TWER's profile of the man behind the "A96" moniker from last February.

Also in recent visuals, Athens-based JRS of Lifetime of Defeats took some Gameday photos and found that some Dawg fans maybe need to brush up on their spelling:

I'm pretty sure this actually makes that guy the Dutch.

Etc. Auburntron had a terrible, horrible, no-good, very-bad day last Saturday (language warning) ... TWER compares Tony Franklin to Bobby Fischer, which, like, yeah, I don't see it myself but I'm hoping that's just me ... the Auburner gets their Quantum of Solace on, and yes, I do believe that's the worst name for a major motion picture I've ever heard, thanks for asking.


TideDruid said...

This makes me think of the Tydrew Zowatts era

Anonymous said...

jerry, you always mention that tood was "effective" or "adequate." but that's just it. he will always be just an ok qb. just a game manager. call me fairweather, call me too optimistic, but does it not seem that kodi would be a gamebreaker one day? the best we can do with todd is go back to ATL and i dont mean for the SEC championship. I mean for another peach bowl. or capital one bowl. or whatever semi-prestigous bowl we've frequented the last 4 years. i agree with you and Acid Reign, i'd rather take my chances with kodi this year and be prepared for next year. just look at all the stud juniors we have. assuming they stick around (which gets more and more unlikely the less improvement we show) i think we would fare better next year. for now, i'd rather rebuild this year and go 8-5 with burns (seems plausible, no?) than 9-4 or 10-3 with todd.

Jerry Hinnen said...

TD: Don't mention that name around here! That's the guy who ruined the 2001 Iron Bowl for us.

Anon, preaching to the choir, man, preaching to the choir.

price per head services said...

I think that it is great that someone is taking the defense role and he is doing great for the team.