HOOVER, Ala. — Auburn quarterback Bo Nix not only backed up the strong words of a teammate directed toward Alabama on Thursday, he doubled down, telling reporters at SEC media days that they don’t fear their in-state rivals.
Tony Fair, a graduate transfer from UAB, tweeted last week, “We comin to take the head off the elephant,” referring to Alabama’s mascot.
“I think that actually I like the quote,” Nix said when asked about the tweet. “I think it’s important because we’re not scared of Alabama. I know that a lot of people want us to be scared, but we’re really not.”
Nix credited Alabama as a great team last season, having won the SEC and College Football Playoff National Championship.
He admitted that Alabama “beat us pretty bad” but added that it was “close at the beginning.”
Nix threw two interceptions and Alabama won 42-13.
Auburn finished the season 6-5 and coach Gus Malzahn was fired, replaced by former Boise State coach Brian Harsin.
Nix said it’s important to him that Flair comes to Auburn with the mindset of wanting to beat Alabama.
He said he knows what that feeling is like, having done it in 2019 as a true freshman.
“For Auburn,” Nix said, “we are here to win those big games and to take the head off the elephant.”
Auburn linebacker Owen Pappoe didn’t repeat Flair’s warning shot at Alabama like Nix, but he supported his teammate nonetheless.
“I love the confidence,” he said. “It’s the biggest rivalry in the country, in my opinion. It’s just what comes with it.”