Rhett Lashlee

Julie Bennett /AL.com via AP

Injured Auburn QB Tyler Green to miss spring game

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All eyes appear to be on John Franklin III this spring at Auburn as he looks to gain an edge in the competition for the starting job over Jeremy Johnson and Sean White. All three will be expected to split reps during Auburn’s spring game on Saturday. One quarterback who will not be competing in the spring game will be Tyler Queen.

The redshirt freshman was injured in a scrimmage last week and it will force him to miss the remainder of Auburn’s spring practices, including the spring game. While he will be out for the rest of the spring, his outlook does not look too inhibiting in the long run.

I think Tyler’s going to be OK long term,” Auburn offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee said, per Al.com. “He got dinged up in the scrimmage Saturday and fell on his AC (joint.) I don’t expect it to be anything that will require surgery, but he’ll be out for the rest of the spring.”

Queen underwent surgery last September for an UCL injury and was supposed to be limited in the spring anyway.

“I think he was getting better as spring went on. He wasn’t where he wanted to be, but he was getting better. Kind of a run of bad luck for him. It’s a different injury and hopefully not near as severe, but obviously for him, I know he’s disappointed. He was excited to get to play obviously last Saturday and hopefully this Saturday and show he was improving.”

As for the remaining three healthy passing options, Lashlee appears set to give each an equal share of the snaps running the offense.

You’ll probably see all three of those guys some with each team and fairly even,” Lashlee said. “I haven’t for sure decided, but probably give a guy two series with this squad, two with this squad, rotate them just to try to balance it up and give them equal reps with the ones, equal reps with the twos.”

Auburn’s A-Day is scheduled for tomorrow (Saturday) at 4 pm ET. Coverage of Auburn’s spring game will be aired by SEC Network. Auburn will open the 2016 season at home on September 3 against defending ACC champion and national title runner-up Clemson.

Auburn wins recruiting battle with Tide for dual-threat QB

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Auburn’s offense scored a nice recruiting victory against in-state Iron Bowl rival Alabama on Wednesday. Woody Barrett of Winter Garden, Florida, has verbally committed to Auburn, which gives Gus Malzahn a four-star dual-threat quarterback to look forward to in 2016. Auburn and Alabama were the finalists in the recruiting process.

Barrett announced his decision Wednesday during a ceremony at his high school, West Orange High School. Barrett is currently rated three stars by Rivals.com, although he receives a four-star ranking from other recruiting services. Barrett missed out on a big recruiting weekend at Auburn due to playing in his school’s spring game (high school spring games are apparently a thing that happens). But Auburn quarterback coach and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee was on hand to see how he performed. The relationship established with Lashlee through the recruiting process proved to be a deciding factor for Barrett.

“I got a real good vibe,” Barrett said after the visit to Auburn, per Rivals. “The team bond, I saw how the team connected with each other and how the coaches got along. Everybody had one team goal and it was to win another national championship.”

As a junior, Barrett passed for 1,558 yards and 24 touchdowns and rushed for 813 yards and nine touchdowns.

If you are feeling bad for Alabama, don’t. Nick Saban pulled in a four-star quarterback in the Class of 2015 with Blake Barnett.

Photo credit: Rivals.com

Auburn’s season-opening QB question may be answered this week

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Barring any unforeseen developments, Nick Marshall will remain Auburn’s quarterback for the 2014 season as the Tigers look to defend their SEC title and make a push for the College Football Playoff. Marshall, though, will not start Auburn’s season opener against Arkansas due to a marijuana possession citation this offseason. Just who might start in his place for the first game of the season could be determined this week, with the season set to kickoff next week.

The most likely scenario appears to be Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn handing the offense to sophomore Jeremy Johnson, but as previously reported, Marshall is expected to see some playing time in the first game of the year as well. The big question is just how soon Marshall will enter the game. After one series? One quarter? One half?

“Talking to coach I think probably here in the next couple of days we’ll go ahead and decide how we want to handle that,” offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee said Sunday, per Al.com. “We have not made a decision yet, both those guys have repped and had a good fall camp. So, I think probably pretty soon, at least internally, we’ll know how we’re going to handle it and then coach will address that when he’s ready and we’ll have a good plan.”

Over the weekend Johnson sung Marshall’s praises to the media, guaranteeing the Auburn quarterback will win the Heisman Trophy, joining Cam Newton, Bo Jackson and Pat Sullivan in Auburn history. Johnson may get to take advantage of some early playing time in Marshall’s brief absence, but there is certainly no quarterback controversy to be seen on the plains.

Auburn rewarding coaching staff handsomly

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The premise is fairly simple. When you take your team to a championship in the SEC and play for a BCS title in your first year on the job, you get a raise. Auburn announced the details for a new contract for head football coach Gus Malzahn and his staff, as well as the contract for new men’s basketball coach Bruce Pearl. Malzahn received a two-year extension complete with a raise to $3.85 million in 2014 with a $250,000 raise each year following through 2019.

The details of the new contract for Malzahn were actually announced in December, although the details about the incentives in the contract are new information. According to the contract details shared by Auburn on Friday, Malzahn can earn $300,000 for playing in the national championship game and another $500,000 for winning it. Malzahn will also be due $200,000 for leading the Tigers to any of the top six bowl games.

Malzahn’s staff will also be taken care of quite well by Auburn. Offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee received a raise of $250,000 to up his salary to $600,000 with a two-year extension running through June 2017. Defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson remains the highest-paid assistant coach after receiving a raise of $50,000 to $800,000 with a one-year extension running through June 2017. The rest of the staff saw pay increases as well, which are detailed in this release.

Having the funds to keep a quality coaching staff together is important, especially for a team coming off as successful a season as Auburn is. What this staff does for an encore in 2014 should be quite interesting in a season when a number of SEC programs will be looking for some new leaders on the field.

It should also be noted that earlier this week Alabama made head coach Nick Saban an even wealthier man as well.