Auburn Ends Home Stand with 58-7 Win
Auburn Quarterback Sean White (13) threw for 239 yards and 2 touchdowns in Auburn's win
(Photo: Auburn Athletics/Dakota Sumpter)
The Auburn Tigers stepped out of conference play to welcome in the ULM Warhawks for their last game in a five-game homestand, and walked out as winners, 58-7.
With the red zone scoring issues that Auburn’s offense has faced this season, and the defense just needing a break, the ULM game came at the right time for Gus Malzahn’s Tigers.
Auburn’s offense entered the game with 7 touchdowns in 22 trips to the red zone. They had also been shut out of the end zone since the 3:41 mark in the fourth quarter of the Texas A&M game two weeks ago. Auburn quickly erased the red zone woes in the first half, as they were 3-of-3 in scoring opportunities.
The first score came with 8:42 remaining in the first quarter, when quarterback Sean White rushed from two yards out, for his first rushing touchdown of the season. The next drive, kicker Daniel Carlson’s streak of 12 consecutive successful field goal attempts was snapped, when his 56-yard attempt was partially blocked. If the kick were to have been successful, it would have tied Carlson’s season long.
There were two turnovers in the first quarter, by both teams, on consecutive plays. Sean White fumbled the ball at the Auburn 21 yard line, and was recovered by the Warhawks. The next play, Linebacker Tre’ Williams forced ULM receiver Xavier Brown to fumble, and Rudy Ford recovered the ball at the 17.
That fumble recovery would lead to Auburn’s next touchdown.
White threw only his fourth touchdown pass of the season with 2:31 remaining in the opening quarter, when he found true freshman receiver Kyle Davis, who was wearing number 86 at the time, from 48-yards out. Carlson’s extra point extended Auburn’s lead to 14-0. The reception was Davis’s first touchdown pass as an Auburn Tiger.
In the second quarter, running back Kerryon Johnson would add two more touchdowns to his season total. One, from 1-yard out with 12:12 remaining in the quarter, and the second one from 2 yards out with 4:05 to go in the half.
ULM would add a score as time expired in the second quarter, when quarterback Garrett Smith completed a pass to receiver Marcus Green in the endzone.
At the half, Auburn led 28-7. Kerryon Johnson led rushing with 127 yards, and two touchdowns. Auburn was 3-3 in the red zone in the first half, which is a great stat for the offense, considering that Head Coach Gus Malzahn, and Offensive Coordinator Rhett Lashlee wanted to work on improving that aspect more than anything else.
Auburn came out attacking in the third quarter, as White would throw his second touchdown pass of the game. This time, he found Tony Stevens, from 48-yards out, which was White’s second touchdown pass of 48-yards in the game. Carlson’s extra point was good, and extended the lead to 35-7 with 12:28 remaining in the quarter.
Three more Tigers would score their first touchdowns of their career. Freshman Malik Miller scored on a 2-yard rush with 7:30 remaining in the quarter to extend the lead to 42-7. The next Auburn possession, would see many new faces, including transfer quarterback, John Franklin III.
It did not take Franklin long to make an explosive play.
Two plays into his first drive of the game, Franklin would keep the option, and rush 80 yards for his first touchdown of his career at Auburn with 5:09 to go in the third. Auburn up 49-7.
However, he was not finished yet.
Following an interception recovery by Javaris Davis, Auburn would begin their next drive at their own 25 yard line. Franklin would again cap the drive, but this time through the air. Franklin tossed a 39-yard pass to freshman Nate Craig-Myers in the end zone, which gave Auburn a 56-7 lead with 1:08 remaining in the third quarter. The touchdown pass was the first touchdown toss for Franklin, and the first touchdown reception for Craig-Myers.
At the end of the third quarter, offensive newcomers found their way onto the stat sheet. Franklin ended the quarter at second on the rushing list, with 82 yards. Miller was behind him with 45 yards on 9 carries.
Auburn capped scoring in the game with 00:31 remaining in the game, when redshirt freshman defensive lineman Gary Walker sacked ULM quarterback Garrett Smith in the end zone for a safety. Final score, Auburn 58 ULM 7.
Auburn finished the game with 688 total yards. Sean White and John Franklin III combined to pass for 278 yards on 15 completions. White threw two touchdown passes of 48 yards, while Franklin completed only one pass, his first touchdown pass as a Tiger to Nate Craig-Myers from 39 yards out.
Four Tigers scored their first career touchdowns in the win over ULM. Quarterback John Franklin III rushed 80-yards for his first touchdown in the third quarter. Later, Franklin tossed his first touchdown pass of his Auburn career to Nate Craig-Myers. The reception was Craig-Myers’ first touchdown. In the first quarter, receiver Kyle Davis was on the receiving end of a 48-yard touchdown pass from Sean White. Finally, freshman Malik Miller scored his first touchdown on a two-yard rush in the third quarter.
Head Coach Gus Malzahn picked up with number 30 during his tenure at Auburn. He is the eighth head coach in program history to do so.
For the fourth time this season, Auburn’s defense held their opponent to under 20 points. Auburn also scored 58 points, which is the most points scored this season. 28 of those points came in the third quarter, which is the most points in a quarter since the 2013 Tennessee game, when they scored 28 points in the second quarter.
Auburn hits the road to face Mississippi State next Saturday, kickoff is scheduled for 11:00 A.M. inside Davis Wade Stadium.