Coming off a season in which they reached the Sugar Bowl, expectations surrounding the Auburn Tigers are high heading into the 2017 campaign.
Coach Gus Malzahn knows that a lot is expected of his group, but he thinks the Tigers can live up to those expectations and more.
During Malzahn’s press conference at SEC Media Days on Thursday, he said there are some similarities between the 2017 Tigers and the 2013 squad — the team that pulled off the impressive “Kick Six” upset of Alabama.
“[P]robably the biggest thing that’s standing out to me about this team, that they’re hungry,” he said at the end of his opening statements. “They’re hungry and they’ve got something to prove. And really the last time I felt this was 2013. So that’s a good comfort for me. I mean, obviously, we’ve got a challenging schedule. We’ve got some great teams in our league. We play the defending national champions on the road week two.
“But I really like where we’re at. And just got that feel where there’s a lot of excitement around our complex, not just with our coaches, but our players. And we’re really looking forward to the season.”
Auburn will be put to the test in Week 2 when the Tigers travel to Clemson. If they’re going to make a statement and make a push for an SEC title, that game will be crucial.