After a 31-10 loss to New Mexico State last week, Hugh Freeze and the Auburn Tigers desperately need a win in the Iron Bowl to get the program back on track. In Freeze’s first season, the Tigers are bowl eligible, but 7-5 with a win over Alabama is a lot better than 6-6 with a loss.
Well, late in the first half, Auburn scored its second touchdown of the day to take a 14-7 lead, but the Tigers haven’t just had to overcome the No. 9 Alabama Crimson Tide and Jalen Milroe, they’ve had to battle some bad calls from the officiating crew.
It started with an egregious facemask on a kick return that was missed by the officials and forced Auburn to start the drive backed up near its own end zone.
In fact, there was actually a penalty against Auburn on the play. Alabama has clinched a spot in the SEC championship game, but with one loss on its schedule already,
Then, Auburn seemingly had Alabama stopped deep in their own territory, but a questionable spot gave a first down to the Crimson Tide.
Shortly after that, Alabama quarterback Jalen Milroe broke out for a big run with the help of a hold by his offensive line.
Bama would be eliminated from the College Football Playoff with a loss today. Then, if a two-loss Alabama went on to beat Georgia next week, the SEC would be eliminated from the CFP conversation.
That’s not to say that the conference has conspired to ensure an Alabama win. Those are just a few dots that are begging to be connected.
That is the reality of college football, not necessarily some conspiracy against Auburn, but don’t tell Auburn fans that.
Auburn has committed five penalties for 28 yards through the first half and Alabama has committed four penalties for 42 yards. More than the penalty yardage, it’s the missed calls that Auburn fans are unhappy with.
Heading into the half, Payton Thorne and Auburn trail Alabama 17-14. Throne has battled injury to play in the Iron Bowl.