The love-hate relationship that Auburn fans have with Gus Malzahn feels like a false narrative right now.
It’s more of a hate-hate relationship.
At least it was after Malzahn’s struggling offense failed to score a touchdown in a 14-point loss at Mississippi State, which gave the Tigers their second defeat of the year. There doesn’t seem to be the same hope as last year that Malzahn will turn it around and lead Auburn to an SEC West title.
That, of course, was what fueled Malzahn’s new seven-year, $49 million contract. As Auburn fans were reminded of, Malzahn is owed a $32 million buyout if he’s fired in Year 1 of this new deal.
So yes, of course there are now a bunch of GoFundMe pages to cover the cost of Malzahn’s buyout. But while the frustration seems to be mounting for Malzahn, the funds to cover his buyout are not.
A total of seven GoFundMe pages for Malzahn’s buyout started four days ago — there are 12 overall — following Auburn’s second loss of the season (I dare you not to laugh when reading them). They’ve raised a grand total of … $10.
That’s it. Two people donated $5 apiece to the same Malzahn buyout page. But hey, it got 172 shares!
Here’s the description of the page that netted those $10:
Gus is terrible! Therefore he’s making Auburn football unwatchable! Let’s help the University buy out his contract so he can go enjoy his life as a great high school coach! I know we won’t be able to come up with the approximate $37 million but hopefully we can get enough to let them know we are serious!!!! #WDE
I know. A lot to unpack there.
It’s noble to think that a group of civilians is going to help a major university finance a coach’s departure. This isn’t exactly the same thing as getting rich boosters to donate money to build a new locker room. It’s getting anyone with a pulse to buy into the belief that if they fork over enough of their hard-earned money, they can put an end to watching Malzahn’s offense every Saturday.
The other part of this I love is “so he can go enjoy his life as a great high school coach.” I mean, you couldn’t even call the guy a great college offensive coordinator? Malzahn did at least call the shots for the 2010 Auburn team that won it all with Cam Newton. Whether you think that was all Super Cam or not, that’s worth something.
But my real big takeaway from this was the honesty. “I know we won’t be able to come up with the approximate $37 million … ”
Uh, ya think?
If there was so much public outcry and Auburn fans could come up with $37 million to fire the coach, he would’ve been fired yesterday. But that’s not the case.
Credit Auburn fans for not wasting their money on a worthless cause. And for the two people who did throw $5 down the toilet, was that just therapeutic? Did it settle your nauseous stomach on Saturday night to pull out the credit card and pledge $5 to make you feel like you helped contribute to the end of the Malzahn era? Way to stand up for someone you believe in.
Sadly, this is far from the first time we’ve seen this happen. There were at least nine GoFundMe pages for Bret Bielema’s buyout. Fortunately, Arkansas ended up footing the bill for that.
There are actually two GoFundMe pages to cover Nick Saban’s buyout, but those were both started by non-Alabama fans who simply wanted to live in a college football world that he didn’t rule. It wouldn’t surprise me if there was some overlap between the organizer of Saban and Malzahn’s GoFundMe pages.
Sorry, upset Auburn fans. You’re stuck with Malzahn.
But if you want to give away money to feel better, hit me up on PayPal.
The #ItMightMeanTooMuch Pastor
Let me start with a quick reminder that if you like reading this weekly column and you have a good story to share, email me (email@example.com) or just tweet it at @cjogara or @SDS with #ItMightMeanTooMuch.
I ask that because I want to tell your stories. Let me know about all the crazy SEC fan encounters you have. Or even if it’s someone else’s experience, I still want to hear about it.
Like when your parents go to a worship conference and the main pastor starts referencing SEC teams as “the axis of evil,” YOU MUST TELL ME:
I picture people at this worship conference taking notes and writing down all of these key bullet points of fun factoids they learned:
- Axis of evil = Auburn, Florida, Tennessee
- Auburn fans still need Jesus
- God lives in Athens
Welp, I think that about covers it. That worship conference looked like it was an informative experience for all that certainly offended nobody.
What I love about this is that you can tell the pastor is feeling pretty confident. Those comments aren’t getting made if Georgia is 3-3 and coming off a Belk Bowl appearance. Those are obviously the words of someone who enjoyed life the last year. During that stretch, this was probably the happiest pastor on earth every fall Sunday morning.
My question is what that Sunday sermon sounds like after a Saturday UGA loss. I guess it can’t get much more savage than calling Georgia rivals “the axis of evil.”
If Georgia loses this Saturday to LSU, this pastor will have another team to add to that.