Gus Malzahn says WR Anthony Schwartz 'needs to have the ball more'
It’s hard to think of a worst feeling in sports than losing without using your best players. Auburn fans possess that feeling days after falling to Florida, 24-13.
That’s because one of Auburn’s top playmakers, sophomore wide receiver Anthony Schwartz, touched the ball just once in the defeat. He had zero receptions and one carry for minus-four yards.
Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn acknowledge that mistake on Sunday and voiced that he has to find ways to get the ball into the hands of his playmakers, such as Schwartz, more often.
“Anthony Schwartz needs to have the ball more than he touched the ball one time,” Malzahn said according to AL.com. “There’s a lot of things it’s going to allow us to do now.”
Malzahn also said Florida’s defense did an excellent job of containing Schwartz, which is why he lost four yards on his only touch. Auburn had designed options where quarterback Bo Nix could have thrown Schwartz the ball, but the Gators covered him too well for him to receive a target.
Schwartz finished the afternoon with two targets, which is his fewest in a game where he’s played this year.
The sophomore receiver, who is one of the fastest wideouts in the SEC, has five receptions for 110 yards this year. He also has five rushing attempts for 78 yards and two touchdowns.
“The big picture is, we’re an offense that thrives on the big play,” Malzahn said. “And when we have big plays, explosive plays, that’s when we play really well. You’ve just got to have your big-play guys touch the ball as much as possible. That’s probably the best way to put that. And I’ll say this, too, it’ll help once he has his mini-cast off, too. That’s going to help him.”