Auburn Basketball: Bruce Pearl Will Bring Championships to the Plains

Why Bruce Pearl Will Bring Championships to Auburn

3/19/14 in NCAABB   |   BlakeLovell   |   86 respect

Mar 18, 2014; Auburn, AL, USA; Auburn Tigers new head basketball coach Bruce Pearl addresses fans after his arrival at the Auburn University Regional Airport on Tuesday.   Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY SportsOnly hours after taking the vacant head coaching position at Auburn, Bruce Pearl was already buying pizza for the school's students. Perhaps that's what makes the former Tennessee head coach different.

But ultimately, it's also what makes him successful.

On the official starting day of the 2014 NCAA tournament, Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs swooped in and made his basketball program the focal point.

Job well done, Jay.

Especially when you consider Auburn's recent basketball history. The Tigers have made it to the post-season only twice since 2000, with one NCAA tournament appearance in 2003, and NIT appearance in 2009. Those types of statistics don't typically reel in top-notch coaches to your program.

But Jacobs once again proved his greatness by landing one of the top coaches available, just like he did in football when he brought Gus Malzahn to the Plains prior to the 2013 college football season.

One year, one national championship appearance? I'd say that one turned out well for Jay.

And that's exactly the type of expectations the once lowly Auburn basketball program has with Pearl at the helm. He brings an energy level that is contagious, which will without question spill over into recruiting some of the top players in the country to play for the Tigers.

He'll also bring a level of excitement that hasn't surrounded this team since the days of power forward phenom Chris Porter nearly 12 years ago. That will in turn bring the fans (and more importantly, the students) back into the gym to watch the team play.

Division I college basketball players don't want to play in front of empty seats. That won't be a problem now that Pearl is in control.

Pearl has been compared to a used car salesmen in the past, and honestly, that's exactly what he'll need to be in order to get Auburn heading in the right direction. If he convince players and fans to buy into what he's selling, this team will be back in no time.

And by back, I mean competing for SEC titles.

Consider what Pearl did at Tennessee during a time when the conference was much stronger as a whole.

The Vols were floundering after Buzz Peterson was fired as head coach, and in came Pearl to try and turn things around. In his first season in charge, Tennessee won the SEC East and got a two-seed in the NCAA tournament. Mission accomplished, and rather quickly.

Can Pearl turn things that quickly at Auburn? That remains to be seen. But make no mistake about it -- the turnaround will happen. 

And just like in football, Auburn will be back to competing for championships.

How do you think Bruce Pearl will fare at Auburn? Let us know by commenting below! For more college basketball talk, follow FanIQ or myself on Twitter!
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