Auburn hoping for sustained success after BCS title - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Auburn hoping for sustained success after BCS title

Posted: Updated:
(AP Photo/David J. Phillip) (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) — The Auburn Tigers are hoping this time will be different.

Auburn's football program has reached the heights of success with more regularity than most over the last 20 years, only to plunge back to mediocrity and beyond before rising again.

"It's been an emotional roller coaster," former Auburn and NFL linebacker Takeo Spikes said.

This Auburn team has produced the most dramatic rebound of them all. The second-ranked Tigers soared from a 3-9 debacle a year ago to Monday night's BCS championship game against Florida State at the Rose Bowl.

The trick for first-year coach Gus Malzahn and athletic director Jay Jacobs will be sustaining a high level of success consistently.

Spikes is optimistic that there won't be a repeat of what happened in the aftermath of the Cam Newton-led national championship season in 2010. The Tigers won four Southeastern Conference games over the next two seasons, including a goose egg in 2012.

"I think Jay Jacobs is aware and is going to do a better job as far as maintenance of it," Spikes said. "To have the team win a national championship the way they did, and have Newton win the Heisman, and come back and pretty much suck the next two years, is why it's so hard for not only alumni but the fans to swallow."

The Tigers have had four seasons since 1993 with no more than one loss, under four different coaches. They've matched that with four losing seasons.

Few programs have been so up and down during that span.

Four times since 1990, Auburn has improved by five or more wins from one season to the next. That matches the most by any Football Bowl Subdivision program, putting Auburn in the company of Hawaii, Rice, Tulane and Tulsa.

Auburn is far from the only program that has struggled to maintain a high level of success year in and year out.

It's the goal, though.

"That's exactly what we're striving for," said Jacobs, a former Auburn offensive lineman, who has worked in the athletic department for more than two decades. "I think this year we've built a foundation and we said back in December when we hired Gus, we're not sure how many wins we'll get but Auburn football's going to be fun. It's certainly been fun.

"It's been a season for the ages."

Jacobs feels Malzahn, an experienced group of assistant coaches and their successes in recruiting make for a bright future.

The Tigers are poised to land their fifth consecutive recruiting class rated among the nation's top 13 in the 247Sports composite rankings. That's a nice start.

The search for stability has also included a big raise for Malzahn, who has already agreed to a new six-year deal worth $3.85 million annually.

"Auburn is a great program and used to winning championships, so I knew that we were going to get it turned around," Malzahn said on Sunday. "I didn't know how quick."

Jacobs is looking beyond this season and hoping Auburn can keep it going.

"When you just look around the league, you see teams that have peaked and valleyed and then they've peaked again," he said. "It's a challenging thing, but I know that with Gus's leadership and everything that we're doing at Auburn in the athletics department, we're building a program for stability and for the future."

  • Latest StoriesMore>>

  • Birmingham man becomes third suspect arrested in Inglenook triple shooting investigation

    Birmingham man becomes third suspect arrested in Inglenook triple shooting investigation

    Thursday, April 24 2014 5:41 PM EDT2014-04-24 21:41:14 GMT
    Three suspects charged in connection with a triple shooting in the Inglenook community of Birmingham. (abc3340.com)Three suspects charged in connection with a triple shooting in the Inglenook community of Birmingham. (abc3340.com)
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Birmingham police have arrested a third suspect in connection an investigation into a triple shooting in the Inglenook community.Cedric Willis, 28, of Birmingham, is charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and second-degree assault for his alleged role in a shooting on Apr. 16 that injured three people. Prior to Willis' arrest, investigators charged two other men -- 22-year-old Tradarryl Boykins and 24-year-old Leroy DeBruce -- in connection with the incid...More >>
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Birmingham police have arrested a third suspect in connection an investigation into a triple shooting in the Inglenook community.Cedric Willis, 28, of Birmingham, is charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and second-degree assault for his alleged role in a shooting on Apr. 16 that injured three people. Prior to Willis' arrest, investigators charged two other men -- 22-year-old Tradarryl Boykins and 24-year-old Leroy DeBruce -- in connection with the incid...More >>
  • Alagasco completes pipe replacement in Marks Village

    Alagasco completes pipe replacement in Marks Village

    Thursday, April 24 2014 5:39 PM EDT2014-04-24 21:39:35 GMT
    All piping inside the Mark Village Housing Development in Gate City has been replaced, according to Naomi Truman, executive director of the Housing Authority--Birmingham District. Truman told ABC 33/40More >>
    Continuing coverageMore >>
  • Birmingham leaders criticize teen "wet" and "twerk" parties

    Birmingham leaders criticize teen "wet" and "twerk" parties

    Thursday, April 24 2014 5:31 PM EDT2014-04-24 21:31:01 GMT
    Recent parties asking teens to "freak," "twerk" and "get wet" are raising safety concerns among Birmingham City leaders.Some of the parties have been held at the Continental Ballroom and other venues for quite some time. Earlier this month, a shooting at the Continental Ballroom resulted in one teenager's injuries. City leaders, consequently, revoked the owner and party promoter's business licenses for that incident and prior complaints.But other upcoming teen parties are planned. They all ch...More >>
    Recent parties asking teens to "freak," "twerk" and "get wet" are raising safety concerns among Birmingham City leaders.Some of the parties have been held at the Continental Ballroom and other venues for quite some time. Earlier this month, a shooting at the Continental Ballroom resulted in one teenager's injuries. City leaders, consequently, revoked the owner and party promoter's business licenses for that incident and prior complaints.But other upcoming teen parties are planned. They all ch...More >>
  • Skills USA Conference in Birmingham this week

    Skills USA Conference in Birmingham this week

    Thursday, April 24 2014 5:22 PM EDT2014-04-24 21:22:57 GMT
    Students are showing off their skills at the BJCC, in various competitions including carpentry, cosmetology, electrical technology and video production.More >>
    Students are showing off their skills at the BJCC, in various competitions including carpentry, cosmetology, electrical technology and video production.
    More >>
  • Blount County DA cracking down on degrading social media accounts

    Blount County DA cracking down on degrading social media accounts

    Thursday, April 24 2014 5:19 PM EDT2014-04-24 21:19:32 GMT
    Blount County District Attorney Pamela Casey is on a mission to shut down several Instagram accounts degrading young women throughout the county. The accounts with names such as "WHORESOFBLOUNTCOUNTY" and "SLUTSOFSUSANMORE" show pictures of teenagers with degrading comments underneath. Casey said the pictures are used without the girls' permission. One site has been taken down, and Casey has asked the social media website to remove them all.More >>
    Blount County District Attorney Pamela Casey is on a mission to shut down several Instagram accounts degrading young women throughout the county. The accounts with names such as "WHORESOFBLOUNTCOUNTY" and "SLUTSOFSUSANMORE" show pictures of teenagers with degrading comments underneath. Casey said the pictures are used without the girls' permission. One site has been taken down, and Casey has asked the social media website to remove them all.More >>
  • NWS Birmingham: Temporary antenna installed for NOAA weather radio alerts

    NWS Birmingham: Temporary antenna installed for NOAA weather radio alerts

    Thursday, April 24 2014 3:49 PM EDT2014-04-24 19:49:35 GMT
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The National Weather Service in Birmingham has installed a temporary antenna atop Red Mountain, allowing the NOAA weather radio to broadcast on a limited basis ahead of the threat of severe weather next week.More >>
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The National Weather Service in Birmingham has installed a temporary antenna atop Red Mountain, allowing the NOAA weather radio to broadcast on a limited basis ahead of the threat of severe weather next week.More >>
  • UPS files motion for partial summary judgement in lawsuit over Birmingham plane crash

    UPS files motion for partial summary judgement in lawsuit over Birmingham plane crash

    Thursday, April 24 2014 3:43 PM EDT2014-04-24 19:43:17 GMT
    Attorneys for UPS filed a motion for partial summary judgement in a lawsuit over the August 2013 plane crash in Birmingham, Ala. Attorneys for UPS filed a motion for partial summary judgement in a lawsuit over the August 2013 plane crash in Birmingham, Ala.
    JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ala. -- The United Parcel Service Co. or UPS has filed a motion in Jefferson County Circuit Court requesting a partial summary judgement in the civil lawsuit over the plane crash in Birmingham last year.More >>
    JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ala. -- The United Parcel Service Co. or UPS has filed a motion in Jefferson County Circuit Court requesting a partial summary judgement in the civil lawsuit over the plane crash in Birmingham last year.More >>
  • Oxmoor Road exit on I-65 North closed due to tractor-trailer accident

    Oxmoor Road exit on I-65 North closed due to tractor-trailer accident

    Thursday, April 24 2014 1:26 PM EDT2014-04-24 17:26:43 GMT
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Authorities have closed the Oxmoor Road exit on Interstate 65 North after an accident involving a tractor-trailer carrying a large excavator.More >>
    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Authorities have closed the Oxmoor Road exit on Interstate 65 North after an accident involving a tractor-trailer carrying a large excavator.More >>