Hugh Freeze has proven to be a controversial hire by Auburn, which shouldn’t come as a huge surprise.

There’s little doubt that he is a quality football coach who has proven that he knows how to build a program.

But off-field issues have always cast a shadow over Freeze’s accomplishments, and there are plenty of Tigers fans who would have liked to see the school go in another direction.

On Monday, reported that both the Auburn president and athletic director had been responding to multiple emails from those who were concerned about the hire.

Those emails were sent in an effort to defend Freeze’s hire and assure Tigers fans that the school would not compromise its integrity.

In emails obtained by, the University relayed the following message:

“… the selection of Coach Hugh Freeze was the result of an extensive search process, which included interviews with 18 potential candidates and an in-depth evaluation of 11 candidates who continued to the vetting stage. Athletics Director John Cohen and his staff reviewed the personal and professional history of each candidate, which included a detailed evaluation of documents and candid conversations with men and women with direct knowledge of those candidates. Cohen said that as a result of this thorough process, Coach Freeze emerged as the right person to lead our football program.”

So how will this hire work out for Auburn in the long run?

Only time will tell and it will likely be a few years before anyone has the answer.