AUBURN, Alabama— Cadillac Williams didn’t just grab a bag of tricks in Auburn’s 41-17 win over Western Kentucky on Saturday.
He dug back nearly two decades.
In Monday’s offensive session, Williams walked in to see the co-coordinator want friend chat with Jarquez Hunter. Friend sharing play-calling duties with receiver trainer Ike Hilliard since Bryan Harsin and offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau wanted to set up a running back pass for Hunter to use near the red zone against the Hilltoppers.
Williams raised his eyebrows. That sounded too familiar.
“I said, ‘Wait, woah,'” Williams recalled after the game. “‘You know who did that, right?'”
That’s what Friend wanted.
“Yes, Cadillac, I know — I was at Georgia in 2004 when you all killed me with the halfback pass,” Friend joked with Auburn’s interim head coach.
When Auburn hosted Georgia in November of their unbeaten 2004 season, Williams fooled the entire defense for a touchdown pass to give the Tigers a 14-0 lead in the second quarter. Just behind the Georgia 30-yard line, then-offensive coordinator Al Borges chose trick play for Williams, who holds the Auburn record with 45 career touchdowns, to put one through the air.
Williams picked up the toss Jason Campbellrolled out for a moment and then hit wide Anton Mix for the score.
“I said to Jarquez, ‘Hey, the halfback pass, it’s going to be a touchdown now,'” Williams said.
Hunter said the game plan called for Auburn to call the trick play early and around the red zone. So two games after the second jam picked up 17 yards to get inside Western Kentucky’s 30-yard line, Friend picked her.
Robby Ashford made the quick pitch to Hunter, who was waiting for the receiver Koy Moore to find his way to the end zone. Moore paused and made what appeared to be an easy touchdown catch before securing in western Kentucky David Williams hit him as Moore loosened his grip on the ball. He juggled possession but made the catch inbounds and the touchdown stood after a check.
“We showed them the play (from 2004) that we’re going to do,” Williams said. “And by the end I was like, ‘It’s going to work. You have proof because your coach did it.'”
Does this game look familiar? pic.twitter.com/y41r2aQtZs
— Auburn Football (@AuburnFootball) November 19, 2022
Hunter, who occasionally moonlighted as a quarterback during his high school days in Philadelphia, Mississippi, was the one who last week suggested a running-back pass to analyst Jeff McDaniels, who has taken over the running-back room, while Williams was lifted to the intermediate place.
As McDaniels passed it on to Friend, he was thinking back to Williams’ game 18 years ago when he was a graduate assistant in Georgia.
“Two days later, they installed it,” Hunter said.
Hunter’s pass gave Auburn a 17-3 lead, but Western Kentucky reached the end zone twice in the second quarter to bring the game to halftime.
However, the Tigers dominated the second half, allowing just 95 yards after the half and picking up the quarterback Austin Reed twice, including a pick six. hunter and Panzer Bigsbywho both surpassed 100 yards in the second straight game, hit on rushes of 40 and 35 yards, respectively, and helped Auburn turn 24-0 in the second half.
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