AUBURN, Ala. (WSFA) - The Plains are a-rockin’ following No. 15 Auburn’s huge 48-45 win over the No. 5 Alabama Crimson Tide in the 2019 Iron Bowl.
The Auburn Tigers got two defensive pick-sixes in the win while freshman quarterback Bo Nix threw for a touchdown and ran for another in the winning effort. Head coach Gus Malzahn says he’s proud of his guys.
“When you look at this whole season, we knew it was going to be a gauntlet. We played the toughest schedule in college football. Our guys hung in there. At times it was tough, they never flinched. Going into this game, we felt like we had the better team,” said Malzahn.
The first half of the game was crazy with 48 points being scored in the second quarter alone. Auburn was able to get a field goal just before the half to cut their deficit to 31-27. Anders Carlson nailed a 52-yarder after a pretty controversial play, but it’s a situation he says they’ve run before.
“That is something we practice so much. We call it the ‘whistle kick’. We are ready for it, and I am glad we got a chance,” said Carlson who nailed the kick just after the snapper got the ball off before the clock expired.
One of the players who had a huge performance in the game was Smoke Monday whose pick-six in the second quarter gave Auburn a 17-10 lead. He loved the vibe he felt throughout the game in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
“It was really live. I really loved it. That’s why we come to Auburn. We come to Auburn for moments like these. It was nice to cherish every moment with the seniors, and I’m just glad we could take them out on a bang,” said Monday.
Seniors like Marlon Davidson, and Derrick Brown, and Jeremiah Dinson who were on the team in 2017 when they took down a No. 1 Crimson Tide team in Auburn. For Dinson, Saturday’s win means more than just another win.
“It means a lot to me. We wanted to send ourselves off the right way. I’ve been waiting on this game forever. With the Iron Bowl, people have bragging rights for 365 days. That’s all I heard when [Alabama] beat us last year. I’m just so happy. I’m blessed how God has brought me to this point. To go out like this on my Senior Day, it means a lot to me.”
This is a game Auburn fans and players will remember forever. For Nix, it was just his first taste of the Iron Bowl as a player. He knows what this win can do for the program going forward.
“It is huge. Not only is it important for recruiting, but also really important for us. Going into the game, we had a lot to prove,” he said.
For the next 365 days until Thanksgiving weekend of next year, Auburn faithful can lay claim to their favorite team being Iron Bowl champions. For the players who played in it, they can remember what it was like to battle next to their brothers for 60 minutes and to have that feeling of happiness and gratitude that all their hard work all week and all season paid off.