Friday, September 10, 2010

Auburn's Gene Chizik is a Fortunate Fellow

I wonder if Auburn football coach Gene Chizik awakes each day and realizes how blessed he is in his profession.

Chizik came to mind yesterday when Auburn played Mississippi State in an ESPN Thursday night game.

Chizik may be the only college football coach in America to have two straight losing seasons in his first coaching position and THEN received an offer at a higher profile place with more money.

Chizik began his coaching career at Iowa State in 2007. The Cyclones were happy to land this hot shot assistant coach from the University of Texas. Iowa State even gave him a rock star introduction at his first press conference.

But the hype was just hype. Chizik struggled with a 5-19 overall record in his two seasons. He was a terrible 2-14 in the Big 12 Conference. Iowa State was committed to this guy however and wanted to give him time.

Well, Chizik apparently considered loyalty only one way. When Auburn offered him the job, he jumped.

Maybe the real strange type in this Chizik saga was Auburn. He had ties to the school (as a former defensive coordinator), but records like 5-19 get people fired not promoted. Auburn apparently (according to reports) was having difficulty landing a coach and went down on the list to Chizik.

Chizik was not welcomed by most in Alabama. Like the folks in Iowa, they thought it was a strange hire. According to one message point, people haven't exactly warmed up to Chizik yet. They credit offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn with being the main spoke behind the Tiger's high-power offense.

Chizik guided the Tigers to an 8-5 mark last season including a bowl win. He is 2-0 so far in 2010. We will see what happens when his own recruiting classes take hold.

Maybe if he keeps winning, he will actually get rewarded for a right reason this time.

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