Freshman QB Bo Nix reportedly struggles in Auburn's first scrimmage of camp
Gus Malzahn put his youngest quarterback to the test during Auburn’s first scrimmage of training camp. The result? Bo Nix reportedly turned it over several times.
While Malzahn wouldn’t come out and confirm this during his most recent media availability, the Auburn coach was willing to note that his defense clearly won the day immediately after the first scrimmage of camp.
“The defense, particularly the orange defense, dominated the scrimmage, had a very good day,” Malzahn said on Thursday. “I think it was three turnovers, two interceptions, one was a pick-six and a fumble. So, they were getting after it, they were flying to the ball.”
That’s Malzahn’s story but according to Brandon Marcello of Auburn Undercover/247Sports, the offense threw three interceptions, with all being thrown by the true freshman:
The offense scored two touchdowns, combined, but the first-team offense was dominated by the first-team defense, which forced three-and-outs and picked off three passes (all by Nix) during the 84-play scrimmage, sources told Auburn Undercover.
However, before Auburn fans in the Nix camp begin to panic, it sounds like Malzahn went into the scrimmage with the plan of throwing a lot at his quarterbacks and seeing how they would react.
“Quarterbacks, we tried to put a lot on them,” Malzahn added. “Usually this is a base scrimmage, and it was to a certain point, but at the same time, there’s plays we know we are going to carry for the first game that we ran today, too. That’s by design to get them as many reps at some of the specific things we are trying to do in that first game to make them more comfortable with the different looks that we see.”
Nix may not have had a great first scrimmage but Auburn’s coach noted he is still a long way away from naming a starting quarterback on The Plains following the team’s most recent practice.
“100 percent, yeah. They’re going to need as many reps as they can get back there, behind – they’re going to need to feel that,” Malzahn continued. “Kinda like I said, I think different than some years is, these scrimmages, we’ve kinda already looked ahead to Oregon and some of the things that we know we are going to do. Give them as many reps as we can doing them so they are more reactive instead of having to think.”
Auburn still has several weeks to work through the competition under center before even getting to game week prep for the season opener against Oregon in Arlington and they’d rather have Nix toss these interceptions now, learn from his mistakes, and be able to fix them before facing off against a Pac-12 opponent eager to earn the first signature win of the season. If he does that, there’s still a chance he takes the field with the first-team offense come Aug. 31.