Aubserver Mailbag 81: Like Ike
This week: The winner of the All-Decade bracket, Ike Hilliard, Colby Wooden, tournaments, baseball scholarships, a guide to wrestling, Bo Jackson and more Homefield Magic
WR coach Ike Hilliard (Todd Van Emst/Auburn Athletics)
The middle of June is supposed to be a down time for college athletics — but, fortunately for those of us who write and talk about them for a living, Auburn is providing anything but that right now.
The baseball team is at the College World Series in Omaha, and we’ll continue to check in with our helpful beat writer experts elsewhere. Basketball practice is back underway, with the program gearing up for their upcoming overseas trip and awaiting Jabari Smith’s potential No. 1 selection in next week’s NBA Draft. And it’s always football season, especially with the increasingly hotter summer recruiting months.
This week’s mailbag tackles questions from all three sports, plus some fun towards the end about a common topic and our friends at Homefield Apparel.
But before we get to our title question about new Auburn wide receivers coach Ike Hilliard, let’s reveal the winner of this week’s fan vote tournament.
Can you tell us the vote totals for each matchup during the All-Decade Teams bracket so we can see if there were any super close margins of victory and other things like that?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, there weren’t any really close calls in the Auburn Basketball All-Decade bracket that we ran this week. Here were the results:
1980s: 98%, 1950s: 2%
2020s: 91.5%, 2000s: 8.5%
1990s: 85%, 1960s: 15%
2010s: 85.6%, 1970s: 14.4%
1980s: 63.5%, 2010s: 36.5%
2020s: 84.6%, 1990s: 15.4%
2020s: 68%, 1980s: 32%
So there you have it: Jabari Smith, Walker Kessler and the 2020s squad (so far) wins it all by a rather convincing margin, even against Charles Barkley and Chuck Person. The 1980s team raced out to an early lead on Thursday morning, but the 2020s pulled away heavily during the afternoon and into the evening. It looks like the older crowd did most of their voting before lunch.
Some might call these results a bout of recency bias, especially considering Barkley is a Hall of Famer and the 1980s squad had multiple NBA first-rounders. But when you have a potential No. 1 overall pick and you accomplished feats that the 80s players never did at Auburn, there’s a good argument to be made that the most talented period in Tigers history is happening right now.
I would take the 2020s squad as well, considering the height advantage in the frontcourt and the accolades advantage in the backcourt. But I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t get to see any of those 1980s stars in their prime. It would make for a fun showdown for sure. Someone get the time machine.