January 1, 2007

Your final breakdown of the 2007 AT&T Cotton Bowl

DALLAS - Adjustments are the key to any football game and Auburn defensive coordinator Will Muschamp proved that in Monday's AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic in Dallas.


The Tigers defeated the Huskers (9-5) 17-14 in a defensive struggle to finish the 2006 season at 11-2.


However, at one point in the game it appeared Nebraska had some offensive momentum that would carry over in the second half when the scored was tied at 14-14.


Nebraska racked up 166 yards of total offense on 31 plays after their second scoring drive right before halftime. Following this scoring drive, the Huskers only had 65 yards of total offense on 34 plays.


Muschamp said it took him a while to figure out Nebraska head coach Bill Callahan's play calling, but once he did, things just came easy for his defense.


"It took me a series to figure (Callahan) out," Muschamp said. "But finally it did and it dawned on me on the sidelines. The light bulb just went on."


The major adjustment Muschamp made with his scheme was switching from man-to-man to zone coverage after the first quarter. All season the Tigers have shown man, but Muschamp said everything Nebraska was doing predicated on going against man defense.


"(Callahan) was running man beaters all on the first drive," Muschamp said. "I just ditched it after that and we went and played zone. I just made a little adjustment."

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