August 30, 2012

The Pessimist's guide to Saturday and beyond

AUBURN -- The first game week of the 2012 season rapidly is approaching.

Saturday can't arrive soon enough.

Anticipation isn't just for fans. Reporters have covering pre-season drills for almost a month now while analyses based entirely on old information were circulating well before that.

Now it's time to see if the changes Auburn made during the past nine months will elicit better results on the field. With that in mind, let's take two very different looks at how things may unfold this fall.

We'll start with how The Pessimist is cataloging everything so far. He long ago parted with his 1950-era tin-foil hat -- bartered online for an advanced police scanner - yet always believes the previous Auburn coaches always will be better, brighter and smarter than anything that comes along from this day forward.
The Pessimist has concerns about this team.

He always has concerns.

The offensive line is a quagmire. Though it's a matter of record that Auburn has signed some outstanding players at this position during the past two years, they're still not ready to contribute at the highest level.

Tackles Greg Robinson and Avery Young have combined for zero college starts, which doesn't bode well for protecting quarterback Kiehl Frazier from perimeter attacks. Center Reese Dismukes, the beacon of stability for this bunch, has drawn an indefinite suspension and will be replaced by yet another player with zero college starts.

Dismukes will return, sure, but when?

This starting five has 22 career starts between them, which is ahead of only the 2007 and 2011 squads. Do you remember much about those seasons? I didn't think so. They weren't notable - aside from a sixth consecutive win against Alabama in 2007.

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