Finley ready to take game to next level

TJ Finley named Auburn starter at QB
T.J. Finley (1) talks about being earning the starting quartback job on Monday.
T.J. Finley (1) talks about being earning the starting quartback job on Monday. Auburn football game week presser on Monday, Aug. 29, 2022 Auburn, Ala. Todd Van Emst/AU Athletics(Todd Van Emst/AU Athletics | Todd Van Emst/AU Athletics)
Published: Aug. 29, 2022 at 11:30 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 30, 2022 at 6:36 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The quarterback position for Auburn is in the hands of a familiar face within the program. The hope for Tigers fans is that the 6-7, 250 pound shoulders of TJ Finely can provide stability at the position.

Head Coach Bryan Harsin named Finley the starter heading into the Tigers game against Mercer (Saturday 6:30 PM). Finley battled for the start with Texas A&M transfer Zach Calzada, and Oregon transfer Robby Ashford.

“I think anybody that was at our practices knew that he won the job from a while ago,” Harsin said during his weekly game week press conference. “I don’t think it was any shock whatsoever. It’s really simple. It’s like, alright, let’s do this, ready to go. That’s what I like about T.J. I mean, he’s the guy who has been taking the number one reps since January. I’m not sure that he was really surprised by it. But nonetheless, you know, hey, let’s roll. It’s time to go.”

Finley threw for 827 yards and 6 touchdowns during his first season at Auburn in 2021. Consistency will be needed in order for Auburn to contend in the SEC West.

“What guys don’t realize is that last year was my second year of playing college football,” Finley said during media availability. “I think a lot of other quarterbacks are granted the opportunity till later their junior year early their senior year to be able to play and blossom to show what they’ve become. But I’ve been thrown into the fire since I was eighteen years old. So all of the stuff that’s been said that he’s not developed, we’ve got guys in the league that are rookies that are 25 years old. let’s give it some time and see if it takes off from there. But every little part of my game has been taken to the next level”

The Tigers Nick Brahms also retired from football Harsin announced during Media availability due to a knee injury. Brahms started 33 games during his Auburn career.

“Nick Brahms is officially done with football now,” Harsin said. “I think that’s been a few questions that have come up. He tried after last season. He had the injury going into the bowl game and then came back and is just not there physically to be able to go out there and play and to really to play at the level that he wants to play at. Nick has been at every practice. He has helped our players out. He has helped the offensive line, and he’ll continue to keep doing that. I am very proud of him just for his efforts, and one thing I told him, ‘Football ends. It always does. It’s just usually not on our timeline that we want.’ His future is bright, he’s going to help this football team, and we’re looking forward to that.”