The arrests and quick dismissal of four Auburn football players won’t dramatically change the Tigers’ 2011 opening day lineup, but it has created more holes on a roster that will be radically different than the one that won the national championship eight weeks ago.
The Tigers have lost at least 32 players since they beat Oregon for the BCS title, including five players who have been dismissed following arrests in the last two weeks. [Emphasis added.]
The good news there is that the dismissed kids didn’t make the situation much worse. The bad news is that the roster was already thinned out before the arrests.
… Auburn returns only three starters on offense and three on defense, and neither of its kickers.
The Tigers must replace their top passer and rusher, in quarterback Cam Newton; three of their four top receivers; and seven of their top nine tacklers.
The high-profile work will come when the Tigers seek to replace their three juniors who have left for the NFL draft. Gone are Newton, defensive tackle Nick Fairley and wide receiver Darvin Adams and their considerable statistics. Auburn is also losing 24 seniors, 20 of whom either started or played a significant role last season.
Piece of cake.