Rivaldo Fairweather is coming back to take care of some 'unfinished business'
The second-team All-SEC TE said he "left a lot of food on the table" in 2023. The same could be said for Auburn's offense as a whole.
TE Rivaldo Fairweather (Jamie Holt/Auburn Tigers)
Rivaldo Fairweather broke his own news in the most nonchalant way possible.
On Monday afternoon, the Auburn tight end sat down to speak with media members as part of several roundtable interview sessions during the Tigers’ on-campus prep for the Music City Bowl against Maryland.
Fairweather, who played three seasons at FIU before transferring to Auburn for the 2023 season, had a fifth year of eligibility remaining because of the COVID waiver from back in 2020. But would the second-team All-SEC selection use it? And would he use it at Auburn or enter the portal, like several other veterans had this month?
But the first question posed to Fairweather was a break-the-ice, get-the-interview-started one: When you transferred in here, did you think you’d be an All-SEC tight end?
“Oh, yeah, that's always the goal, to be the best in the nation,” Fairweather said. “I was what, second team? So next year, obviously, the goal is to be first team and be the No. 1 tight end in the nation. I'm just blessed to be in this position and be recognized in this league coming from the C-USA. I'm just thankful for it all and give God all the glory for putting me in this position.”
So, I guess that means you’re coming back next season?
“Oh, yeah,” Fairweather replied. “… I just felt like I left a lot of food on the table. It's unfinished business here. I know Coach (Hugh) Freeze has a great plan for us here and that we will be way better than we were last year.”
In an era where player announcements almost always come with some sort of video or graphic, the laid-back Fairweather just said it was happening. (Auburn would tweet out an announcement graphic after the interview.)
Fairweather’s return is a sizable one for an Auburn passing attack looking to take a step forward in 2024 after inconsistent results, particularly in games against bowl-bound competition.
Even though he didn’t record a reception in the Iron Bowl, Fairweather still finished the regular season as the Tigers’ leading receiver in catches (33), yards (349) and touchdowns (6).
His production earned him a second-team All-SEC selection behind Georgia superhuman Brock Bowers, and he’ll most likely enter next year as the top name at the position in the entire conference.