Former Auburn football coach Pat Dye was the guest speaker at the Columbus Quarterback Club on Monday night. Dye amassed a 99-39-4 record at Auburn, where he coached from 1981 through 1992. His teams won four SEC titles. Among the players he coached was Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson. Dye, who played at the University of Georgia, was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2005. He spoke with the Ledger-Enquirer’s Brian Evans prior to the QB club meeting.
How good is this Auburn team?
What they have done speaks for itself, and I think they getting better. Nobody expected Auburn to be here.
How good is Cam Newton?
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Well he’s a catalyst, and I think they had a good football team, but his presence has made it a great football team.
Who do you believe is better Bo Jackson or Cam Newton?
I’d like to have Bo running tailback and Cam running quarterback. I will say this, Bo Jackson in my mind is the greatest running back that ever lived, and I said (Florida quarterback Tim) Tebow was the best football player until I saw Cam. Now I believe he is. The reason being is he handles the ball every snap, and Bo was going to get the ball 35-40 times a game at tailback, but Cam handles the whole football team, gets them lined up right, changes the play, handles the passes, blocking schemes. He can run inside, outside, he can make you miss him, and he can run over you.
Do you think Auburn can win the national title this year?
Yes, I do, I sure do, and we couldn’t win without Cam Newton.
Would you change the BCS process?
I would prefer to have a playoff, but I will say this — I don’t think a playoff system would create anymore national interest than the BCS. Maybe it would if they were going to pick eight top teams and have a three-game playoff, but then they would be writing and talking about the eight teams that would get there.
How has television affected college football?
The NFL is taking a back seat to college football. It may be in my region or my area down here in the Southeast, but I think there is a all-time high right now in college football and it’s probably ’cause of television there are so many games televised now and it brings tremendous interest.