Thursday, December 11, 2008

Gill to Auburn: War Eagle ... or Run Far Away

The talk of Turner Gill heading to Auburn to replace Tommy Tuberville continues to increase, though Auburn is talking to a lot of people right now. Steve Sipple of the Journal-Star thinks it might be a great move for Gill.

I'm not so sure. It sure looks like a heck of a promotion; SEC conference team at a school that has the resources to compete. But underneath that facade lays a swirling storm of micromanagement that has been chewing up and spitting out head coaches for three decades.

It all ties back to a Auburn alumnus and bank executive who also is a member of Auburn's Board of Trustees for 25 years. The name is Bobby Lowder, and according to ESPN, his fingerprints are all over the firings of Auburn football coaches ever since. The Chattanooga Times-FreePress calls him the "Emperor of Auburn" (unofficially, of course). And now after changing his mind on coaches almost as often as George Steinbrenner, he's taken a shining to Turner Gill.

To be sure, if Gill were to become head coach at Auburn, he and his family would be set for life. But at what price? Auburn's run-ins with the NCAA are legendary. I'll be quite honest; I'm not sure this is a situation that Gill can control, even though his name would be on the football program.

I really want the best for Turner Gill, but I really question whether Gill can tame that Tiger, or if the Tigers will devour Gill, much like they've devoured everybody and everything else in the past.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There is not even a question that this would be a horrible move for Gill.

The Syracuse job, if offered, is a much better fit. Gill is already familiar in the NY and Northeast area where he would be asked to recruit and has shown the ability to turn around a program that is nearly dead.

Turn needs to run away from Auburn faster than he used to run away from an OLB on the belly option.