Shenker on the offense: ‘I think it’s a little bit easier with Eric Kiesau’

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All eyes are going to be on Auburn’s offense at the start of the 2022 season. The Tigers will have a new offensive coordinator, a new starting quarterback and an unproven group of receivers.

Despite these changes, veteran tight end John Samuel Shenker thinks the group will have it easier than last season. His reasoning is that while Eric Kiesau may be entering his first season as Auburn’s offensive coordinator, he and Bryan Harsin have plenty of experience.

“I think it’s a little bit easier this year with [Offensive Coordinator] Eric Kiesau, because they’re on the same page,” he said. “They’ve been together for a while now.”

“They see that. And now we get it be a part of that. I think with Eric Kiesau there’s a whole different dimension of communication. Allowing all of us to be on same page and pushing towards the same goal.”

Shenker is not wrong, Kiesau spent four seasons at Boise State with Harsin. He was the wide receivers coach from 2017-19 before being promoted to offensive coordinator in 2020. It would make since that the two of them would have a better understanding of what the other is looking for and that it would help the offense.

“To be on that same page is really beneficial for our offense,” Shenker added. “Like Tank said, added run emphasis as well. But I also think it creates better communication with our wide receivers and tight ends.”

The offense will be put to the test when the Tigers open the season against Mercer in Jordan-Hare Stadium on Sep. 3. Shenker also answered several other questions during his availability, here is everything he said.

On how they have changed the team culture:

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Well, I think that’s also a testament to Coach Harsin and some of the things we went through. Coming from the season last year and all the guys that are coming back. Knowing where Auburn needs to be and where we were, and I think guys are realizing that. With Derrick Hall and Tank [Bigsby] as well knowing we belong at the top. That’s where our push is. People can say what they want, but they’re not in the locker room. They’re not at practice every day. We believe what we’re doing in the offseason has created momentum, positivity, and what we’re ready to do this fall.

On seeing growth at the quarterback position:

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Yeah, absolutely. It’s a testament of those guys. They work so hard. They’re also in the rooms and talking with the coaches just trying to better themselves. Especially during this quarterback battle. We’ll see that as fall camp starts. This is where all the hard work pays off. We’ll see that battle as it convenes. We’ll see what happens as we push through into the season.

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