Auburn football player responds to Freeze hiring

Published: Nov. 28, 2022 at 10:29 PM CST
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AUBURN, Ala. (WBRC) - After struggling through more drama and fewer wins than fans were hoping for this season, Auburn football has answered the burning question about next season. Hugh Freeze will coach the Tigers in 2023. The university announced the hiring of Freeze Monday afternoon at a salary of $6.5 million over six years.

For fans who had pushed for other big names like Lane Kiffin and Deion Sanders, the Freeze hiring is likely exciting. But one former player is adamant that if Freeze is going to have success next season, he has to include the man who salvaged Tiger Pride this season.

“Coach Cadillac has to be at the table,” says former Defensive Back Adlai Trone who played for three head coaches at Auburn from 1995-1999. “It’s about football. And when you can rally young men around you and get ‘em to execute at that level, and then, you’re talking about a guy that did it without any experience.”

After firing Bryan Harsin last month, Auburn’s brand new president and athletic director made running backs coach Cadillac Williams the team’s interim ,and first Black, head coach. The Tigers responded by winning two of their final four games including upsetting Texas A&M before closing out the season with an Iron Bowl loss to Alabama.

In the process, Williams brought fans who were leaving games early back to the stadium, full of restored pride. That’s why it didn’t take Trone long to return to what Coach Cadillac had done when asked about the first things Coach Freeze needs to do to be successful on the plains.

“Engage the Auburn community. That’s the number one thing, and that’s the number one thing that you get with Coach Cadillac” says Trone. “He knows what Auburn means. He knows what it stands for. Coach Freeze is gonna have to engage in the Auburn community before he does anything. What does the Auburn community want? What do we stand for? What do we need? And that’s gonna translate into the win column. That’s first and foremost. We have to unite the Auburn family.”

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