Auburn head football coach Hugh Freeze is not intimidated to take on Alabama’s Nick Saban in their annual Iron Bowl meeting.
Freeze, who found success against the Crimson Tide during his tenure at Ole Miss, was officially introduced as Auburn football’s next program leader during a press conference Tuesday.
When asked about his excitement over taking on Saban as an SEC West Division foe each year, Freeze said one does not “take this job if you’re not built to want that.”
“I want it, I want to be in that arena. I really, really enjoy that type of game,” said Freeze. “I have great respect for Nick, and he and Miss Terry have been really good friends to us, too. But I hope they’re a little nervous today.”
While in Oxford from 2012-16, Freeze went 2-3 against Saban and company. The Rebels, led by Freeze’s high-powered offense, bested Alabama in back-to-back seasons in 2014 and 2015. Ole Miss nearly defeated Alabama in 2016, but was handed a narrow 48-43 loss.
The margin of victory Ole Miss enjoyed in both victories against the Tide during the Freeze era was six points in both matchups.
An offensive guru, Freeze hopes to employ fast-paced spread concepts against the traditionally stout Alabama defense. Crimson Tide defenses have historically struggled against the Auburn coach’s style of offense.
As far as the Iron Bowl is concerned, Alabama has gone 11-5 against the Tigers since Saban’s 2007 arrival in Tuscaloosa. The Tide leads the series against Auburn 49-37-1.
Dylan Smith is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL