October 31, 2009

Seniors lead defensive resurgence

When Ole Miss drove 94 yards for a touchdown on its first possession an all-too familiar feeling had to set in on the Auburn sidelines.

A bad start coming off three straight losses can have that affect.

But Auburn's seniors would have none of it, particularly cornerback Walt McFadden and defensive end Antonio Coleman, who have insisted that last few weeks that this is not the same team that finished with losses in six of its final seven games last year.

"When things start going bad usually somebody starts putting their head down and giving up," McFadden said. "When it happened on our side of the ball we had seniors and leaders walking up and down or sideline saying, 'It's not over. We're not giving up. We're going to keep playing.' We kept pushing."

McFadden and Coleman did more than just talk on the sidelines. They backed it up with their play against the Rebels.

McFadden had five tackles, 1.5 tackles-for-loss and two big interceptions, the first he returned 29 yards for a touchdown in a wild third quarter. His second interception stopped the Rebels final drive of the game on AU's 23-yard line with three minutes remaining.

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