Auburn football: UCF, Tigers fans react to Herb Hand hiring

Auburn football (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Auburn football (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

Fly War Eagle knows that many Auburn football fans don’t want to hear about Gus Malzahn, UCF, or anything Knights-related anymore. That said, Malzahn bringing back former Tigers OL coach Herb Hand to join him in Orlando is too juicy of a steak not to chew into.

Hand had a short stay on the Plains, but he was instrumental in the team’s explosive offense during his Auburn stint.

Not only that, his ability to form a sturdy enough offensive line for Kerryon Johnson could have facilitated his eventual NFL jump.

Hand’s time with Auburn football contributed to a laundry list of achievements for the entire offense (per

"In 2017, Auburn ranked in the Top 30 in the nation in total offense (26th/451.6 ypg), scoring offense (27th/33.9 ppg) and rushing offense (26th/218.3 ypg), while ranking sixth in completion percentage (.668) and 15th in third-down conversion percentage (.455).The Tigers balanced offense was one of only five nationally to average at least 230 yards passing and 215 yards rushing per game, along with Louisville, Oklahoma, Ohio State and South Florida. Auburn’s eight 40-point games during the season set a school single-season record.Under Hand, RG Braden Smith earned All-America honors from all NCAA-recognized outlets including a first-team nod from the Associated Press, and a second-team selection from all others (WCFF, FWAA, AFCA and Sporting News). Smith also earned the SEC’s Jacobs Blocking Trophy, as the top blocker in the conference, along with being named first-team All-SEC by both the league’s coaches and the Associated Press.Along with Smith, LT Austin Golson was tabbed third-team All-SEC by Phil Steele. The line paved the way for RB Kerryon Johnson to rank 15th nationally in rushing yards per game (115.9) and ninth in rushing TDs (18), while being named SEC Offensive Player of the Year and second-team All-America."

It’s no wonder why UCF fans were so accepting of their newest signee for the support staff of Gus Malzahn:

Hand’s resume has only improved since his time with the Tigers, serving as a co-offensive coordinator under Tom Herman at Texas. His time with the Longhorns was cut short when Herman was let go this past January.

Hand was not retained before former Alabama Crimson Tide OC Steve Sarkisian took the reins in Austin.

Texas’ loss is now UCF’s gain. According to some disgruntled Auburn football fans, though, the Knights weren’t right in selecting hand:

Regardless, Malzahn is building something in Orlando, and it’s possible this new era could push the Knights into consideration for the College Football Playoff:

While the above statement is up for debate, the UCF hype is real.

So is the Bryan Harsin hype, though.

War Eagle!

Next. Fans react to Gus Malzahn to UCF. dark