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Aurandt: two times a champion

 He’s not only a national champion, he coaches champions too. Tyler Aurandt came to VSU in 2002 after being recruited by coach David Dean.  As a red-shirted freshman, Aurandt anxiously watched as the Blazers made the national championship; unfortunately Grand Valley State defeated them. Two years later, Aurandt was ready for his shot at that national championship title.  The Blazers returned to the championship field in Florence, Ala., for the second time, fully prepared to take home that title.  In 2004 the Blazers defeated Pittsburgh State University and won the very first national championship for VSU.
 “Winning the national championship in 2004 was probably one of the biggest accomplishments of my life, aside from graduating college,” Aurandt said.�
 Aurandt graduated in 2006 with a degree in finance as well as a degree in accounting. He is currently working on his Masters in public administration.  He has been a graduate assistant and wide receiver coach at VSU for three years.�
 In 2007 Aurandt found himself back on the championship field in Florence for the third time; however, that time he was coaching and calling plays from the sidelines rather than scoring the touchdowns, like he did in the past.  Aurandt coached the Blazers to a victory over Northwest Missouri State University and he was a part of bringing another national championship home to Valdosta, Title Town USA.�
 “I was happier when I won the championship in 2004 but I was prouder when I coached in 2007,” Aurandt said. “I had my turn in 2004 and it was amazing, but it was so rewarding when I got the chance to help my teammates and some of my best friends win a national championship; helping them accomplish their goals means so much to me.”
 Aurandt is from Snellville, Ga., and has been playing football since he was in middle school, after giving up baseball because he said it was too boring. He spent five years playing wide receiver at VSU for former head coach, Chris Hatcher. Now, with a national championship ring on each hand, he coaches alongside head coach David Dean. Dean first recruited Aurandt, during his senior year of high school. Dean offered him the chance to play football and the opportunity to win a national championship.  Five years later Dean offered Aurandt an even more rewarding coaching opportunity.�
 “I have so much respect for Coach Dean; he is an outstanding football coach and I am so thankful he has given me so many opportunities throughout the years,” Aurandt said.

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