Last year, as a way to introduce themselves to the area — and because, admit it, it’s just way cool — then-new head coach Gene Chizik and his coaching staff rolled out “The Tiger Prowl” as a flashy way to traverse the recruiting trail.
Coaches would pile into a white or black stretch limo Hummer, and proceed to travel from high school to high school to high school visiting potential recruits, hoping to make enough of an impression on the players that, come Signing Day, they’d put pen to paper and fax their intentions to Auburn.
While it’s debatable what kind of impact Tiger Prowl 2009 had on their 2010 recruiting class — assistant coach Curtis Luper said “it was significant” — something had an effect as the Tigers pulled in the No. 4 recruiting class in the country according to Rivals.com this past February.
With that initial success in hand, Chizik & Company are preparing to unveil Tiger Prowl v2.0 over the next month and a half. This time though, instead of Hummer limos, Auburn will utilize pimped-out buses/motor coaches as they hit the recruiting trail over the next six weeks, culminating in Big Cat Weekend around Memorial Day.
Luper, who said last year’s Prowl “let us know our efforts were not in vain”, said this year’s tour “will be very, very similar to last year”, although he would not give up any specifics to the Birmingham News.
Luper also explained the thinking behind last year’s Prowl.
“We were new to the state and we really wanted to get ourselves out there, and to familiarize ourselves with as many people in the state as we could,” Luper said. “The main thing was to get out and let everyone know that Coach Chiz and our staff’s objective was to start recruiting right here in Alabama. That was our motivation.”
Now, if they could just find some on-field momentum and wrest the Iron Bowl away from Nick Saban and Alabama…