June 15, 2024

Many believe that Auburn football head coach Hugh Freeze has a lot to demonstrate this season. His initial year on the Plains, which resulted in a 6-7 record including the bowl game, can be seen as just that — a first year. He didn’t have the full offseason as head coach, inherited a struggling team, and so on.

However, in 2024, the situation looks different. There have been significant changes in staffing, with new coordinators on both offense and defense, and Freeze’s first complete recruiting class at Auburn is ranked in the top 10 in the nation, featuring a highly talented group of wide receivers.

Blidi Is No. 15 For The 2020 Class - RedRaiderSports

Nevertheless, with the departure of several key players to the NFL Draft, there were gaps to fill. To strengthen the wide receiver and defensive line positions, the coaches turned to the transfer portal and brought in five players during the spring transfer window.

Within a 24-hour span, three defensive linemen committed to the Tigers: Philip Blidi (Indiana), Isaiah Raikes (Texas A&M, USC), and Keyron Crawford (Arkansas State). Following them was the commitment of former Penn State WR, KeAndre Lambert-Smith, whose four years at Penn State will bring valuable leadership and experience to a room filled with younger players. The group was completed by former Akron offensive tackle Ronan Chambers, who recently switched his commitment from Tulane to Auburn.

KeAndre Lambert-Smith enters transfer portal: Penn State's top WR exits,  limiting options for QB Drew Allar - CBSSports.com

“We believe the ones we acquired in the spring, along with the high school additions, have definitely strengthened us. The late additions we just made, we haven’t seen them in action yet, but we’re optimistic about them,” Freeze said Tuesday morning, according to AL.com. “They’ve added depth to our team, especially along the defensive line, where we’ve brought in some quality players, and at receiver. So we’re cautiously optimistic about our new additions.”

With the portal now closed, the Tigers have likely completed adding players to this year’s squad, but they will continue recruiting for the class of 2025.

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