USA Today reporter George Schroeder was given all-access to the Auburn Tigers football team during their participation in Monday's BCS Nation Championship Game and wrote a fantastic article about the experience. It's a must-read for any college football fan, but one section that stood out in particular was Schroeder's transcript of the speech that Malzahn delivered to his players in the locker room after their loss to Florida State:
"I know we are all disappointed. We are stinkin' competitors. I'm just gonna tell you this: We feel like crap right now. But everybody in this room is stinkin' champions. They fought their butt off. We make a play or two, we end up winning the game.
"Here's what I don't want you to do: I don't want anybody to have their head down. I don't want anybody playing the name game, all that crap. Man, we're all in this. I could have done a better job, too. We got beat. We're gonna give those guys credit. We're gonna show class, all right?
"Because you learn the biggest lessons in life through adversity. But I'm gonna tell you, when everybody looks back on this team? They're gonna remember that it's the biggest turnaround in college football history.
"I'm just gonna say this to you seniors. I know I talked to y'all last night. We love every one of you. You're the ones that got us here. We'll never forget the senior class. I just wanted to say that. What you guys did? You laid the groundwork for the best years to come.
"I'm just gonna tell you right now, I'm proud of you. You fought your butt off. They had to make a play or two to win. It's OK to be disappointed -- crap, we should. That's OK. But let's just make sure we're together. We're different than everybody. I want everybody to understand, OK? All right."