It might’ve been SEC basketball media days, but Bruce Pearl knows it’s football season.
Auburn’s basketball coach has done a great job of taking advantage of the Tigers’ rooted football culture. He gets many of his top prospects on campus to attend Auburn football games, and it pays dividends on the recruiting trail.
But during an SEC Now segment Wednesday, Pearl wanted to talk about what he deems to be nonsense regarding Gus Malzahn’s job security on the Plains, taking a specific stand against ESPN commentator Desmond Howard.
“Well, first of all, first of all, and it’s very important we be accurate. I was very upset with Desmond Howard — OK, this is the first time I’m saying this publicly — before we played LSU, Desmond was talking about the hot seat,” Pearl said. “Gus Malzahn is not on the hot seat. He’s never been on the hot seat. He may have been on the media’s hot seat, but he’s not on Jay Jacobs’ hot seat. He’s not on Auburn family’s hot seat.”
Pearl continued his rant, noting his challenge to Auburn’s fan base and how he views the current status of the 2016 Tigers football squad, capping his tangent off with a “boom!” and a smile.
“He’s one of the most brilliant coaches in the SEC. I told the Auburn fan base, ‘What are you going to do? Are you going to stand by your coach? Are you on the Gus Bus or not?'” Pearl said. “Well, let me tell you something. He’s got a great defense, he’s got an unbelievable kicking game. The quarterback is better than what people give him credit for.”