The Auburn football program turned over a new leaf at the end of last year with the hiring of head coach Hugh Freeze. After the program spent two years in a downward spiral under the leadership of Bryan Harsin, a new staff and a new mentality around the program provided a breath of fresh air to Tiger fans.
While Hugh Freeze has done his best to temper fan expectations since he’s arrived on the Plains, reminding folks that it takes more than a few months to turn around a program, it’s also clear that he and his staff have worked hard to fix a lot of the problems the team was facing.
It started off with recruiting—Freeze successfully salvaged the class of 2023 and brought in more than 20 transfers to add talent and depth to the roster. With new schemes and plenty of new faces, fans can expect to see a revamped group hit the field this September.
But not everyone believes that a great deal of progress will be made in the 2023 season. Athlon Sports picked the Tigers to finish last in the SEC West in 2023, with a final record of 6-6. Not great.
However, sportswriter Andrew Stefaniak of Auburn Daily disagrees, and believes that people are severely underestimating Auburn football:
"I believe the national media is sleeping on the Auburn Tigers. Hugh Freeze brought in so much talent via the transfer portal that it’s hard to see a world where this team doesn’t win eight games. I do believe six wins are on the table for the team, but I feel comfortable saying Auburn could win seven or eight games, and I would not be surprised."
With expectations to go only 2-6 in SEC play, the bar is set pretty low for the Tigers in 2023. However, the idea of “flipping the script” and “Auburn being Auburn” means that the team could end up doing something special in Freeze’s first year.