Dissecting what Auburn football coach Bryan Harsin said at SEC Media Days 2021
Auburn looks to improve on a 6-5 record from 2020, during which coach Gus Malzahn was fired.
Here's what Harsin said and what it means:
What he said: Auburn is not at the 80% vaccination threshold that Commissioner Greg Sankey mentioned Monday. Harsin said the team is in the 60% range.
What it means: Sankey said eight of the 14 haven't reached that mark, and Auburn is one of them. Across the state, the Crimson Tide has passed that threshold, Nick Saban said. That could be a competitive disadvantage for Auburn because Sankey said they are looking at not postponing games this season and instead teams might have to forfeit if COVID-19 becomes a problem and forces players to sit out games.
What he said: "I'm excited about Tiger walk"
What it means: Harsin already showed in his news conference that he understands and wants to take part in tradition, despite this being a new era with his leadership. He seems eager to keep traditions rolling.
What he said: “I have always admired Gus (Malzahn). I have always thought he has a great offensive mind.”
“We have this weird web of connection, Coach Malzahn and I do.”
What it means: They know many of the same coaches, have worked with many of the same coaches, and Harsin has now succeeded the former Auburn coach twice. The first came at Arkansas State. Harsin understands what Malzahn is about by having spoken with him and knowing several of the same people in the business, which likely helps inform Harsin as he takes over yet another program from Malzahn.
What he said: On leaving Boise State for the Auburn job: "I’m an alum. I have a lot of pride in that program. I bleed blue. I always will. There have been other opportunities, but not like this."
What it means: Harsin had to really want this job to leave his alma mater for it. And he wasn't going to take just any job.