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Tag:Mike Blanc
Posted on: May 24, 2011 11:32 am
 

Former AU player McNeil faced lawsuit, evictions

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

When he was one of four now-former Auburn players arrested in connection with an armed robbery March 11, ex-Tiger safety Mike McNeil had no criminal record beyond a speeding ticket. But as the Birmingham News reported today, that didn't mean McNeil wasn't facing his share of legal troubles.

According to court documents, McNeil and teammate Mike Blanc had been served with eviction papers and eventually a lawsuit by a former landlord. The suit resulted in a judgment against McNeil -- only days following his arrest -- for more than $12,000. McNeil and Blanc had also recently been evicted from a second apartment they shared with current Auburn cornerback Neiko Thorpe, who has been named as a witness in the robbery case.

Neither Blanc nor Thorpe have been accused of any wrongdoing in connection with the robbery. But the living arrangement helps explain why Thorpe (along with teammates Mike Dyer, Anthony Morgan and DeAngelo Benton) has been named as a witness.

Living expenses like rent might be one of the uses for the proposed "full cost of attendance" scholarships that have become a hot-button topic the past week. But obviously they'll arrive far too late to make a difference for the likes of McNeil.

Posted on: November 15, 2010 5:11 pm
 

No appeal for ejected Auburn defenders

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Earlier today, Auburn head coach Gene Chizik seemed to be holding out hope that senior defensive linemen Michael Goggans and Mike Blanc -- neither a starter, but both regular rotation members at defensive end and tackle, respectively -- could somehow avoid the SEC -mandated half-game suspension for their ejections at the end of the Tigers' win over Georgia .

The league office has wasted no time, however, in letting Chizik know he should probably go ahead and hope for something more likely , like a pogo stick:
SEC associate commissioner Charles Bloom said Monday there is no appeal, and, such, Blanc and Goggans will not be available in the first half of the Nov. 26 game [against Alabama] ...

Chizik said he was "embarrassed" by the actions of Blanc and Goggans after the game.
"That's not who we are,'' he said.
Whatever Auburn's defense was, what it is now is down two players who might have helped Auburn keep in check an Alabama offense that (despite the occasional sputter this season) remains loaded with talent and may be fully back on track after unloading 452 total yards and 30 points on a good Mississippi State defense.

The Tigers have made a habit this season of falling behind early and dominating late, but on the road against a team with the Tide's combination of offensive explosiveness and defensive coaching acumen, another slow start could prove fatal to their BCS championship hopes. Goggans' and Blanc's absences don't guarantee yet another start like that, but they certainly won't help Auburn avoid one, either.

Posted on: November 15, 2010 12:11 pm
 

Auburn awaits word on its pugilists

Posted by Tom Fornelli

While Auburn was able to bounce back from an early deficit and overcome all the distractions of the previous week against Georgia on Saturday, things did get a bit chippy at the end of the game.  It all started with what many felt was a cheap shot by Auburn defensive tackle/eater of souls Nick Fairley on Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray.   A hit that now has Murray's status this weekend in question.   In the closing minutes, with the game already decided, there was plenty of pushing and shoving by both teams, but only two players threw punches.

Auburn's Mike Blanc and Michael Goggans were ejected on consecutive plays for throwing a punch, and the SEC rules are pretty clear about what happens when you do that.  Not only are you ejected from the current game, but you're forced to sit out the first half of your team's next game.  In Auburn's case, that would be the Iron Bowl against Alabama in two weeks, which is a pretty important one for the Tigers seeing as how they'd like to stay undefeated.

Well, it seems that Gene Chizik is holding out hope that he might have both of his players available, though he'll have to talk to the SEC about it first.

"I'm not going to really comment on that," Chizik said on Sunday. "We're going to talk to the SEC [Monday] and we're going to figure exactly what their status is at that point.

"The SEC reviews every situation, penalty-wise, that is reviewable or brought to their attention. We haven't talked with anybody. We know what happened [Saturday]. We're just going to reserve all comment until we really get some clarification on exactly what the status of those guys will be. I haven't had that opportunity yet."

Now it's possible that the Tigers could appeal the ruling, and have the punishment delayed, but I don't see how having either player suspended for the first half of the SEC Championship is any better.  Besides, I'm not sure what there is to appeal.  The rules are pretty clear, and there's video evidence of both players throwing the punches.
Posted on: November 13, 2010 7:56 pm
 

Auburn, Chizik off to Atlanta after win

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Not many fans outside of Auburn will be pleased with it after the week's Cam Newton revelations and some ugly scenes at the end of tonight's win over Georgia , but that also won't make any difference after the Tigers' 49-31 victory moved them to a perfect 7-0 in the SEC and clinched the West division title. Auburn will play in the SEC championship game for the first time since 2004 and for just the third time since the SEC's divisional split in 1992.

Though a national title game could still be on the horizon pending the SEC title tilt and an even-tricker-looking visit to Alabama , the West championship is already a huge vindication for Gene Chizik , whose hire was derided in virtually every corner after his 5-19 record at Iowa State . With two games still to play, he's a perfectly palindromical 19-5 in his two seasons at the Auburn helm, and whether or not the Newton scandal forces him to vacate those victories, it's hard to argue he hasn't brought the team a steady, calming influence that's allowed them to make three comebacks from double-digit deficits this season.

Today was the third, with the Bulldogs jumping out to a 21-7 lead before the inexorable march of Auburn's ground-pounding offense wore down Georgia's defense as the game. The Tigers finished with 315 rushing yards, their sixth straight SEC game with 300 or more yards on the ground. Newton finished with 151 yards and two rushing touchdowns (to go with 148 and 3 scores in the air), Onterio McCalebb 71 and three scores, and Michael Dyer 60. Georgia scored 10 points on their first two drives of the second half, on expertly-guided drives of 81 and 66 yards by Aaron Murray ... but it didn't make much difference when Auburn's final five possessions of the game all ended in touchdowns.

The game ended on a sour note as a pair of Bulldog offensive lineman took exception to a hit by Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley on Murray which forced him off the field, dogpiling on Fairley after the following play. The resulting fracas resulted in the ejection of backup defensive end Michael Goggans , and after the next play, a punch saw backup defensive tackle Mike Blanc dismissed as well. Both will reported miss the first half of the Alabama game, and though neither starts, both see major time in Auburn's usual defensive line rotation.

Neither that nor the Newton scandal will do much to dull the celebrations in Auburn tonight, though. The coach who would supposedly never get Auburn to the top of their division did it in just two years. Until/unless the NCAA says otherwise, that's more than enough reason to break out the party hats.

 
 
 
 
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