Auburn Football: Five Tigers Key to a Victory in the Outback Bowl

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Nov 8, 2014; Auburn, AL, USA; Texas A&M quarterback Kyle Allen (1) throws a pass as Auburn Tigers lineman Gimel President (42) closes in during the first half at Jordan Hare Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Gimel President

The Auburn defense has struggled this season, and one of the most recognizable reasons has the lack of a consistent pass rush. Sophomore defensive end Carl Lawson tore his ACL in the spring, which meant other players needed to step up.

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Gimel President was one of those players.

President, a 6-foot-4, 259-pound defensive end, has played in 11 games this season and has started each of the last eight games for the Tigers.

“He’s a very physical young man,” head coach Gus Malzahn said earlier this season. “He’s really made some really good, physical plays. He’s tough guy, he’s a smart guy, and he’s earned it. From a coaches’ standpoint, that really makes you feel good if you have a guy that’s really been consistent and earned his way out there.”

Because of injuries to other defensive ends such as DaVonte Lambert, who tore his ACL against Samford in the 11th game of the season, and nagging injuries to LaDarius Owens and Elijah Daniel, President saw much more of the field in 2014 than everyone expected.

The sophomore responded with 28 total tackles, including four tackles for a loss and a sack. President has also been credited with six quarterback hurries and a pass breakup, and with a solid performance in the Outback Bowl, could cement his status as an impact player for new defensive coordinator Will Muschamp in 2015.

Next: Safety Rudy Ford