January 27, 2009

Auburn offers Magnolia State safety

Monday was a big day for Olive Branch (Miss.) safety Daren Bates.

The 5-foot-11, 195-pound Bates was visited at his high school by Auburn defensive coordinator Ted Roof along with assistants Trooper Taylor and Jeff Grimes.

"It was real good talking with the coaches and it got even better when they offered me," Bates said. "I was kinda surprised by the offer because they came on kinda late but it's good that they saw that I can play."

Auburn head coach Gene Chizik visited Bates and his teammate, offensive lineman Aubrey Phillips, last week and then called Bates Monday afternoon.

"Coach Chizik called because he wanted to tell me personally about the offer," Bates said. "It's big for me. I always wanted to play in the SEC, especially when I've been told I might not be able to. Now I see that I can play in the SEC and I'm ready to get down to it."

Auburn is recruiting Bates as a safety.

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