Auburn outlasts Louisville, wins 31-24

The Auburn Tigers are ranked 4th in the nation right now and they opened up the season against a stout defensive unit in the Bobby Petrino-led Louisville Cardinals. The game took place in Atlanta as part of the 2015 Chick-fil-A Kickoff game.

The Tigers almost allowed the Cardinals to get back into the game after leading 31-10 until there was just over six minutes left in the game. Auburn was led by the strong running game of Peyton Barber.

Roc Thomas and Jovon Robinson were considered the favorites on the depth chart, but it was Barber who shined all game long.

Quarterback Jeremy Johnson led his team on the first drive of the game and ended up going into the endzone from 1 yard out to put his Tigers up 7-0. The defense came up big early the second quarter as linebacker Justin Garrett picked up a fumble and raced 82 yards for the tocuhdown, putting his team up 14-0.

It wasn’t just the Tigers’ offense and defense stepping up during the game. Kicker Daniel Carlson provided a big boost for the Tigers as he nailed a 56-yard field goal late in the second quarter. The field goal was a Chick-fil-A game record.

The Tigers were up 17-0 at the half as many. I’d say Will Muschamp has done a pretty good job with this defense this offseason.

Auburn got a big scare at halftime as Thomas was sat out for the rest of the game with an ankle injury. He was said to be getting x-rays. The Cardinals took advantage of that as freshman quarterback Lamar Jackson took over for starter Reggie Bonnafon, but it took a little too long to get his feet under him.

Johnson, who started off the first half pretty rough after throwing two interceptions, finally found the endzone connecting with Ricardo Louis from 33 yards out. Another note: Johnson’s interceptions were to former Georgia defensive backs Josh Harvey-Clemons and Tray Wiggins, who were both involved in the miracle Hail Mary play in 2013.

The Cardinals finally got on the board after a 43 yard field goal from John Wallace and ten yard touchdown run by Jackson. The Tigers answered early in the fourth quarter with a 7-yard sweep run by Louis to make the score 31-10.

Late in the fourth quarter, the Cardinals made the game rather interesting after a Brandon Radcliff 2-yard touchdown run at the 6:21 and 2:49 mark in the game. The Cardinals just ran out of time as the Tigers moved on to a 31-24 win.

Johnson had a pretty poor showing in the game as he only threw for 140 yards and three interceptions. He is going to have to have a much better showing next week as he leads his team against the LSU Tigers. Barber had a good showing on the ground, running for 106 yards on the day.

The true freshman Jackson had a terrific showing throwing for 100 yards and rushing for 106 and a touchdown. It’s going to be a good week for the Cardinals as they try to bounce back against Houston. Some bad news for the Cardinals was Tray Wiggins leaving the game with an apparent shoulder injury.

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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports

BYU edges Nebraska with hail mary, wins 33-28
BYU edges Nebraska with hail mary, wins 33-28