Auburn's Ziemba says Tigers needed a change

Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

AUBURN, Ala. -- I had a chance to talk with Auburn junior offensive tackle Lee Ziemba on Thursday.

Ziemba, one of the better left tackles in the SEC and always one to speak his mind, didn't hold back on where he thinks it all fell apart last season.

"When things started to go wrong, we stopped working," Ziemba said. "I guess it started from the coaches on down, kind of a lack of interest. You could tell there was tension within the ranks, and the players started choosing sides. Once that starts happening, the team breaks apart and people stop caring. People stop working hard.

"I think we needed a change ... if we were going to get it back."

That change came in the form of Tommy Tuberville accepting a $5.1 million settlement to step aside following a 5-7 season and Gene Chizik returning to Auburn as head coach. He was the Tigers' defensive coordinator from 2002 to 2004.

Ziemba said there's no mistaking what the identity of this program will be under Chizik.

"He's always preaching to us about continuing what Auburn was built on, and that's down and dirty hard work," Ziemba said. "A man can only count on what he earns. That's basically what coach Chizik is trying to instill in us.

"We're getting down to good old hard work, and that's what we needed."