Auburn football: Tray Matthews already impressing new teammates

rblack@ledger-enquirer.comJuly 15, 2014 

Free safety Tray Matthews (28) was dismissed from Georgia last month and transferred to Auburn. In his short time with the Tigers, he's already impressing his new teammates.

DAN EVANS

HOOVER, Ala. — Following his dismissal from Georgia last month, Tray Matthews decided to continue his playing career at Auburn. And despite being one of the newest members of the Tigers' program, senior defensive tackle Gabe Wright is already sold on what Matthews can bring to the table.

"He told us he took an honest look at Auburn coming out, so going through recruiting, that’s the easiest thing for me to be able to respect about a guy. He’s really honest," Wright said Monday. " ... Through the first captain’s practices and through workouts, you can tell he’s a guy who’s going to fit in well."

He won't be able to help immediately, however, as Auburn coach Gus Malzahn confirmed Matthews will have to sit out the coming season before becoming eligible in 2015.

Auburn did its due diligence before deciding to bring Matthews in, Malzahn said, as he conversed with Rodney Garner. When Garner was still on Georgia's staff, he was one of Matthews' recruiters.

Auburn's defensive line coach knew Matthews and his family well enough that he was comfortable vouching for the safety's character.

"We do our homework on everybody that we take in our program. We got a chance to recruit Tray before he went to the other school," Malzahn said. " ... We feel like he'll be successful in our program."

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