Although the UMass Minutemen are far from the most difficult opponents the Tigers will face this season, Saturday’s win was a tremendous victory for the Auburn football program. The Tigers are back and under new leadership, meaning that for the first time in a few seasons, there is forward motion and a path on an upward trajectory.
We’ve heard about head coach Hugh Freeze and offensive coordinator Philip Montgomery’s plans for a revamped offense with more of a focus on the passing game, but that wasn’t really on display this weekend.
Freeze noted during the offseason that he wanted more from his group of wide receivers, which has changed a lot since last season. With multiple incoming transfers and returners eager to earn their spot in the starting rotation, there are still definitely kinks that need to be worked out.
More is expected to be added to the passing game in week two as the Tigers will face a more formidable opponent in the Cal Golden Bears, and several guys will need to step up in their roles, per Auburn Undercover:
"“I think Jay and ‘Var have been the most consistent and solid guys,” Freeze said. “I think our outside guys are coming on. But we’ve felt ever since spring that those two guys were going to be main contributors and solid performers and I’ve seen nothing that keeps me from thinking that’s still true. I’m proud for both of those guys. We’ve got to expand their role some. We didn’t show a whole lot in the passing game Saturday, truthfully. Hopefully, they have more targets coming.”"
Though the first victory gives us all a good feeling, there are still plenty of improvements to be made. Hopefully, Auburn football will kick things up a notch in week two and show out against their West Coast opponent.