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Auburn High News

For Chiziks, Family and Football Run Deep Part 2

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Friday on ESPN 106.7’s The Lunch Break, Coach Gene Chizik sat down with Painter Sharpless and Chuck Furlow. They discussed a number of topics before landing on a subject that hits close to home for the championship-winning coach. His son, Cally, committed to Furman recently. Naturally, he was excited for his son.

Coach Chizik said, “Well, I’m really proud of him. He committed to Furman. Just really, really proud. Furman’s a great academic institution. History of football there. Tradition is extremely strong. He had several opportunities. He visited there. He’s visited there three times now. He went to camp, took an unofficial and went and watched a game then we took an official visit a few weeks ago.”

Both Chiziks have been immersed in high-level football. The elder Chizik as a renowned defensive coordinator at Auburn before he helped lead the Texas Longhorns to the 2005 national title as co-coordinator. Upon his return as head coach on the Plains, he brought a national title to Auburn for the first time in more than fifty years.

The younger Chizik experienced that success from the sideline while growing up. Flash forward, he was a critical component to Auburn High’s 2018 success and return trip to the playoffs.

When asked why he chose Furman over offers from other programs Chizik said, “I chose Furman because of the home feeling I get when I go up there. Everything from the coaches, the team, to my recruiting  class and even the location.”

It’s evident academics as well as comfort among his teammates and coaches were invaluable characteristics to Chizik. He elaborated on this when he said, “It’s always been important to me that people want me and wanna be around me for the right reasons. I get that feeling 100 percent from Furman. Academics are also a big part of it. At a certain point I compared what my degree would mean coming out of Furman compared to other schools… I didn’t see a fair comparison.”

Chizik’s father on The Lunch Break went on to give praise to Furman’s program and said, “Clay Hendrix, the head coach, has done an excellent job. Former Furman player. He’s really turned it around. They shared the Southern Conference championship this year. It’s just great football, great education, great football, I couldn’t be more thrilled. Really proud of him. I think he approached the recruiting as a mature guy and didn’t get too high or too low in any of the offers that he got. I think he’s going to be playing at a level where he can contribute and have a great career. At least I hope so. He’s happy, mom’s happy and dad’s happy.”

Below you can hear Chizik discuss why he believes Furman is a great school and a good fit for the Auburn High standout.

The full conversation with Coach Chizik is also available below.

Auburn High Baseball Wins 2018 7A State Championship Over Hewitt-Trussville

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The third time proved to be the charm for Auburn High Baseball as they win the 2018 7A State Championship in two games over Hewitt-Trussville after making the state championship series for three years in a row. In Friday night’s game at Paterson Field, Hewitt-Trussville struck first on an RBI single by Tyler Mauldin in the fourth to draw first blood and take a 1-0 lead. Then the Tigers offense came to life against Huskies starter Carson Skipper in the sixth inning with a double by senior Teddy Benda, followed by a sacrifice bunt and a couple of Hewitt-Trussville errors to score two. Later in the inning, Senior Clayton Phillips brought in two more on an RBI single to push the lead up to 4-1. Four runs was plenty for Auburn starter Brooks Fuller, who went the complete game giving up just four hits, one earned run, and striking out eight.

 

On Saturday the series moved to Riverwalk Stadium where Auburn started usual game one starter Drew Jennings to face Hewitt-Trussville’s Michael Fowler. However, Fowler’s outing was short as he was removed from the ball game after the Tigers threatened to score by loading the bases in the first. Both teams’ offenses were kept in check during the pitching duel until the third. Auburn Senior Garrett Morris led off the third with a walk, then stole second base and advanced to third on a Griffin Speaks infield single. Auburn Junior Jackson Arnold brought in Morris on a sacrifice fly that ultimately became the difference in the game. Drew Jennings stranded runners in scoring position in both the sixth and seventh innings to lead to a complete game shutout to give the Tigers their first State Baseball title since 2010. Jennings was also named 7A Series MVP after the game for his complete game in which he only gave up three hits, two walks, and struck out six.

 

 

Here is Scott Bagwell’s call of the final out of the 2018 7A State Baseball Championship on ESPN 106.7:

 

Auburn High Baseball Splits Double Header in Theodore, Forces Game Three

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Attachment.pngAfter a less than stellar performance in game one that led to a 8-2 defeat, Auburn High shuffled their lineup and won game two by a 11-2 final behind a strong pitching performance. Senior Brooks Fuller went five innings giving up just two earned runs and six strikeouts to help force a game three. Senior Clayton Phillips paced the Tigers offensively, as he went two for two with a run scored and two RBI.

On Saturday, Auburn finds themselves in a winner-take-all game three for the second time in this year’s 7A Playoffs. Last week, Head Coach Matt Cimo entrusted Senior Teddy Benda with the baseball in game three and earned the win-or-go-home victory for the Tigers. Benda is expected to make the game three start once again on Saturday.

Attachment_1.pngScott Bagwell will have game three coverage live from Theodore, Alabama beginning at 1:50 on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.