In his first sitdown with reporters since Dec. 21, new Auburn head football coach Gus Malzahn briefed the media on his competed coaching staff, the ongoing heat of recruiting season and seeing high energy return to the Plains.
Gus, how’s it been going?
“It’s been going good. It’s been pretty fast, but it’s been a very good fast. Now that we’ve got our coaches in tact, they’ve been on the road for weeks and it’s going good.”
Were there challenges on the recruiting trail with having to start fresh?
“Yeah, I think anytime a completely new staff comes in, you’re going to play catch-up. But our coaching staff’s done a great job of identifying the guys and really recruiting them hard, so I’m very pleased with our staff.”
How do you feel with this particular group of assistants?
“They’ve done a great job of coming together. We’re one team with one heartbeat and one vision. They’ve really worked their tail off so hard, and I really see good things in the future with this group.”
How about the overall experience gathered on the defensive side of the ball?
“Yeah, I’d say our defensive group’s probably the most experienced group out there, especially with the SEC. I thought that was important. Offensively, we feel very good, and we’ve just got to get our defense back. That group can really do it.”
What did it mean to bring Dameyune Craig back to Auburn from Florida State?
“When he was first hired, I felt like it was very important to get a couple guys that played here at Auburn that were successful at Auburn to help get our edge back. Dameyune Craig was definitely one of those guys I identified early, and we’re very fortunate to have him.”
It was a tough fall here, are you seeing the passion return to Auburn?
“Well, I was here the previous three years, it was a great experience for me. We’ve got the best fans in America, and it’s been a great response. I really appreciate them, and it’s been a lot of fun.”
What was it like today delivering pizza to Auburn students as they awaited the basketball game against Kentucky?
“It was a great experience for me personally to be out in front of our fans. You can feel the energy and the passion. We’re proud of our basketball team, also.”
Clint Moseley’s status, officially?
“Yeah, he’s no longer on the team, and he’s looking to get his degree (at Auburn.)”