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Tracy Rocker Continuing Auburn Legacy as Coach
AP Photo/Pam MacDonald (left), AP Photo/Lisa Norman-Hudson (right)

Tracy Rocker is undoubtedly one of the greatest players, offensive or defensive, to ever step on to the field at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

The former Auburn Tigers defensive tackle dominated in the SEC back in the 1980s under Pat Dye, solidifying himself as an all-time great on The Plains alongside legends like Bo Jackson, Pat Sullivan and Kevin Greene.

Rocker left Auburn with some serious hardware, winning numerous awards and trophies for his efforts. While his playing career in the NFL was brief, the 54-year-old is back at Auburn under new head coach Bryan Harsin and continuing his incredible legacy.

To make things better, he continues to coach in the same league his son is a baseball star in.

Tracy Rocker’s Auburn Career

The 6-foot-3, 288-pound Tracy Rocker from Atlanta’s Fulton High School quickly made his presence known at Auburn.

Rocker grew into a two-time All-American defender and 1988 Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award winner, becoming the first SEC player to win both awards. Oh, and the three-time All-SEC player won the 1988 SEC Player of the Year.

In his time at Auburn, Rocker racked up 21 sacks and 354 tackles. His sack total is fourth all-time in program history.

Rocker was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2004, the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2005 and the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 2018. He’s one of just seven Auburn players inducted into the NCAA’s prestigious hall of fame.

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Rocker parlayed his incredible Auburn career into a third-round draft pick by the Washington Redskins in the 1989 NFL Draft. He suffered a knee injury two seasons into his pro career before spending a season in the World Football League.

The Auburn legend then began a long coaching career. Stops at Auburn High School (defensive coordinator), West Alabama, Troy State, Cincinnati, Arkansas and Ole Miss all as defensive line coach led him back to Auburn from 2009-10.

He then joined the NFL’s Tennessee Titans as the team’s defensive line coach before helping a few more SEC teams like Georgia (d-line coach and associate head coach), Tennessee and South Carolina.

More than 30 years after tearing up offensive linemen as a player, the assistant coach is back growing his legacy at Auburn.

Coach Tracy Rocker Joins Auburn

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Bryan Harsin didn’t waste much time hiring a man Auburn fans will appreciate on the sidelines even more next season. Rocker, who won a national championship with Auburn in 2010, will serve as the team’s defensive line coach for the 2021-22 season.

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Rocker could barely contain his excitement in a school press release.

“I’m excited about coming back to Auburn to work with Coach Harsin and the staff he has put together,” Rocker told AuburnTigers.com. “In my visits with Coach Harsin, he has shared a clear vision for the program and I’m looking forward to helping put that vision in place. I have great memories as a player and coach at Auburn and can’t wait to create more in the future.”

Harsin called Rocker “one of Auburn’s all-time great players” with a “wealth of experience coaching.” Rocker has coaches the likes of Nick Fairley and first-rounders DeMarcus Ware, Jamaal Anderson and Dee Ford.

“He understands what a championship team looks like and knows what it takes to be successful at the highest level. We’re excited to welcome back Tracy to the Auburn family,” Harsin told AuburnTigers.com.

Tracy Rocker’s Son

Rocker has been coaching in the SEC where his son, Kumar Rocker, has been dominating the college baseball world for the Vanderbilt Commodores.

Rocker and his wife, Lalitha, have been able to watch their 6-foot-4, 246-pound son lead Vanderbilt to a 2019 NCAA Championship as a freshman.

Kumar, who won the 2019 CWS Most Outstanding Player award and threw a 19-strikeout no-hitter, is expected to be selected first overall in the 2021 MLB Draft.

While Tracy Rocker will be recruiting top talent to Auburn University and looking forward to the 2021 season under Harsin at his alma mater, he’ll also likely become a very proud baseball father.

MORE: Bryan Harsin?s Wife is the New First Lady of Auburn Football

Patrick covered the Florida Gators during the forgettable Will Muschamp and Jim McElwain eras before spending two seasons writing for Major League Baseball. He's a baseball junkie who spends his days defending Derek Jeter and the Miami Marlins. He lives in South Florida but his heart belongs in Gainesville, Florida.
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