Baby steps

Thursday, September 06, 2007
Sports Reporter

AUBURN -- Al Borges was trying to explain Auburn's Game 1 offense while keeping a grasp on his fidgeting 10-month-old daughter, Mady Joe, who was mesmerized by a shiny tape recorder.

"We've got a lot of young guys," Borges said, "and there are going to be some growing pains."

He stopped as Mady Joe squirmed out of his lap. "Speaking of young people with growing pains," Borges said, as his daughter made a beeline for the row of reporters' audio recorders.

Borges the father can empathize with Borges the offensive coordinator.

Auburn's offense had a rocky debut last week against Kansas State, struggling for most of the game before taking the lead on an impressive touchdown drive in the final minutes.

Auburn enters Saturday night's game against South Florida with a 1-0 record, but plenty of questions about the health of its offense.

"It's easier to deal with mistakes when you win," Borges said. "We didn't really play as a team offensively very well. We had a lot of 10-man football -- 10 men doing it right and one breakdown (causing) the play to be negative. After watching the tape, I'm convinced if we had just had a little better execution we could have scored some more points."

Borges and head coach Tommy Tuberville identified three problems and possible remedies for the Tigers' offensive woes:

-- 1. Sprinkle in some imagination:

During Auburn's undefeated season in 2004, Borges' offense was known for its creativity and aggressiveness, in addition to a solid ground game.

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