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Now that Allen Greene has stepped aside at Auburn, all the naysayers and boo birds have come out of their basements to knock Auburn University. The themes are pretty simple: there goes Auburn again, Auburn being Auburn.
As Auburn begins the search for a new athletic director, one thing is clear, the time has come for Auburn to really BE Auburn again. What does that mean? It is time to end the experiments with outsiders, it’s time for Auburn to look inside the family, the AUBURN FAMILY, and hire an athletic director with deep roots in our community, deep roots in our family and deep roots in Auburn athletics.
Fact is that being a part of Auburn University actually means something to all of us. To steal the SEC slogan, Auburn just means more. As Pat Dye famously said, “Alabama fans love Alabama football. Auburn fans love Auburn.”
Those aren’t slogans, those are facts. While many college towns embrace their universities, the connection between the City of Auburn and the University is uniquely strong and what many love so much about Auburn as a whole. The Auburn experience becomes a part of who you are for the rest of your life, and the bonds created on that campus will last forever.
That culture, that commitment to The Plains, runs deep, and sadly it takes a great deal of time for outsiders to even come close to understanding what Auburn is really about. And when we hire folks without a bit of knowledge or experience with our University, it takes years for them to acclimate, and that's even if they acclimate at all. So crucial amounts of time go by for that acclimation process to take hold, and then, only then, does Auburn figure out the hire can’t get the job done, doesn’t fit the Auburn family, or doesn’t understand the true meaning of being an Auburn Tiger.
It is time to stop that madness. They say the true definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. No more. Auburn doesn’t have the time to experiment any longer with outsiders, with strangers. The Auburn athletic department needs someone who can hit the ground running on Day 1 of their hire. No learning curve. No trying to understand the Auburn factor. Our next hire should be a 100-percent, deeply-rooted Auburn candidate, someone with Auburn running through their veins, who can take this University’s athletic department to the next level the AUBURN WAY.
Only an Auburn person understands what Auburn needs and how to achieve it.
Let the search begin.