2014 Iron Bowl: #15 Auburn at #1 Alabama Preview and Predictions

5 of 5

Nov 30, 2013; Auburn, AL, USA; Auburn Tigers wide receiver Quan Bray (4) breaks a tackle by Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Landon Collins (26) during the third quarter at Jordan Hare Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports


I am an Auburn University student and supporter. I love my school. Always will.

And sure, Auburn’s taken some lumps this year, but this year has simply been the perfect storm for a struggle. Injuries, tough schedule and reversals of fortune have taken their toll on the Tigers. It happens to all big programs. Gus Malzahn has restored Auburn’s national relevance and will maintain it as long as he’s the head coach on the Plains.

More from Auburn Football

But I am also a sports journalist, and I have to avoid bias in my writing if I am ever to be taken seriously.

So, with that said, how do I think this game will go? Well, if you’re an Auburn fan… not well.

Alabama presents match-up nightmares all over the place on offense. Blake Sims is a mobile QB, and Auburn has struggled against those all season. The Tigers’ struggling defense won’t have answers for Amari Cooper, DeAndrew White, Christion Jones, O.J. Howard, TJ Yeldon and Derrick Henry.

Alabama’s defense, as usual, is strong, and the Tigers have struggled on offense the past few weeks. Fumbles and long dry stretches have started to show themselves more frequently. Having Duke Williams back helps a lot, but I’m not sure it will help enough.

Auburn will hang around with Alabama for a half, but in the second half, the Crimson Tide in their home environment will be too much to overcome. Alabama wins going away and wins the SEC West.

Alabama Crimson Tide 35, Auburn Tigers 17

Other Predictions:

#5 TCU 35, Texas 21 (The Longhorns have come on STRONG recently, but they don’t have the talent yet to top TCU.)

#17 Missouri 23, Arkansas 21 (Mizzou wins on a last-second field goal and wins the East for the second consecutive year. Wut)

#13 Arizona State 49, #11 Arizona 35 (ASU has won 3 of 4 in this series, and the Sun Devils rebounded from a loss by pounding Wazzu last week.)

UPSET ALERT! Stanford 28, #8 UCLA 17 (Everyone’s penciling in the Bruins in the Pac-12 Championship Game, when SUDDENLY, STANFORD)

Virginia 21, Virginia Tech 3 (This game will likely be Scot Loeffler’s last as OC at Virginia Tech. Hokie Nation rejoice!)

#6 Ohio State 42, Michigan 14 (Bye-bye, Brady Hoke.)

#9 Georgia 38, #16 Georgia Tech 28 (The Jackets have had a very strong season, and I’d pick them to win if this was in Atlanta. But it’s in Athens.)

#21 Clemson 34, South Carolina 31 (If Deshaun Watson plays, he’ll torch Carolina’s mediocre defense.)

UPSET ALERT! Kentucky 27, #22 Louisville 26 (The Wildcats need this win to be bowl-eligible. Led by Patrick Towles, UK marches into Louisville and comes out with a 6th win.

#4 Mississippi State 27, #19 Ole Miss 21 (The Rebels will perform much better here than they did against Arkansas, but in the end, even in Oxford, there will be too much Dak Prescott and too little offense from Ole Miss. Mississippi State finishes the regular season 11-1 and waits to see if the door to the SEC Championship will be opened by Auburn.)

#7 Baylor 84, Texas Tech 21 (Baylor knows they’re behind TCU. They need to make a statement. How’s 84 points in a single game sound?)

Notre Dame 31, USC 28 (Weren’t both of these teams in the top ten at some point? Oh well. It’s still a prestigious rivalry. Irish win in L.A.)

Tennessee 35, Vanderbilt 7 (Tennessee should win this game handily to become the SEC’s 12th bowl team. A Kentucky win over Louisville would make Vanderbilt the SEC’s lone non-bowl team.)

#2 Oregon 49, Oregon State 31 (The Beavers aren’t going to lay down and hand the Ducks the Civil War. Marcus Mariota will be more than willing to step up and take it.)

UPSET ALERT! Florida 27, #3 Florida State 23 (Will Muschamp’s last game. The players will be giving their all for their coach. Jameis Winston has had spurts of struggling in most games this year, and this Gators defense might be the best one he’s faced yet. FSU has been playing with fire all season without getting burned. It’s in Tallahassee, so the Gators will have an “Us against the World” mentality. This is simply the perfect storm. GATORS WIN.)

Next: The Five Greatest Auburn Iron Bowl Victories