Auburn coaches, players help provide relief after devastating tornadoes rip through Alabama

Auburn football coach Gus Malzahn and several members of the Tigers football team delivered supplies on Monday to help those affected by the numerous tornadoes that devastated parts of Alabama and Georgia this weekend.

At least a dozen tornadoes touched down in Alabama and Georgia on Sunday, according to CNN. One tornado touched down in Lee County, Alabama — where Auburn University is located — and killed 23 people, including three children, according to the Opelika-Auburn News. The tornado, which was recorded as an EF4 tornado with 170 mph winds, was the deadliest in the United States since 2013 and cut a path of at least 24 miles long.

Malzahn and nearly 30 players helped deliver supplies to the Providence Baptist Church in Beauregard, Alabama, and the Greater Peace Baptist Church in Opleika, Alabama, on Monday afternoon, according to 247Sports.

“Well our guys really wanted to help any way they could,” Malzahn said, via WVTM’s Kyle Burger. “It’s a tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.”

Auburn is currently working with local authorities to plan more ways to aid in relief efforts, according to athletic director Allen Greene and basketball coach Bruce Pearl — who said he lives near one of the hardest-hit areas.

“I know that Auburn and its leadership both in athletics and the university are working diligently right now to form some action plans to be able to respond, not only short-term but long-term to help our community to rebuild and to heal,” Pearl said, via WVTM. “The devastation is real. I live up on the side of town probably closest to the area ... so obviously it hits home.”

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Tornadoes strike in Alabama, Georgia
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Tornadoes strike in Alabama, Georgia
BEAUREGARD, AL- MARCH 4: Damaged trees are photographed after two back-to-back tornadoes touched down in Beauregard, Alabama, U.S., on March 4, 2019 (Photo by Robert Ray for The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Residents and friends help clean up after a tornado struck in Beauregard, Alabama on March 4, 2019. - Rescuers in Alabama resumed search operations Monday after at least two tornadoes killed 23 people, uprooted trees and caused 'catastrophic' damage to buildings and roads in the southern US state. 'The devastation is incredible,' Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones told the local CBS affiliate late Sunday.'I cannot recall at least in the last 50 years... a situation where we have had this loss of life that we experienced today.' (Photo by Tami Chappell / AFP) (Photo credit should read TAMI CHAPPELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Resident Shannon Kelley talks on the phone as she walks down her street after a tornado struck in Beauregard, Alabama on March 4, 2019. - Kelley told AFP 'I am glad my family wasn't home' 'Its all material things that can be replaced but I have no insurance.' Rescuers in Alabama resumed search operations Monday after at least two tornadoes killed 23 people, uprooted trees and caused 'catastrophic' damage to buildings and roads in the southern US state. 'The devastation is incredible,' Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones told the local CBS affiliate late Sunday.'I cannot recall at least in the last 50 years... a situation where we have had this loss of life that we experienced today.' (Photo by Tami Chappell / AFP) (Photo credit should read TAMI CHAPPELL/AFP/Getty Images)
BEAUREGARD, AL - MARCH 04: Trees lay snapped in half in the aftermath of a tornado on March 4, 2019 in Beauregard, Alabama. At least 23 people are confirmed dead following Sunday's tornado outbreak with violent storms that left debris strewn across southern Alabama and Georgia. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
SMITH STATION, AL - MARCH 04: Gabe and Brandi O'Neal embrace outside of the Buck Wild Saloon after it was destroyed by a tornado on March 4, 2019 in Smith Station, Alabama. No customers were inside the bar when the tornado hit Sunday afternoon. At least 23 people are confirmed dead following Sunday's tornado outbreak with violent storms that left debris strewn across southern Alabama and Georgia. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
BEAUREGARD, AL - MARCH 04: Volunteers and residents clean up trees and debris from a tornado at a home on March 4, 2019 in Beauregard, Alabama. At least 23 people are confirmed dead following Sunday's tornado outbreak with violent storms that left debris strewn across southern Alabama and Georgia. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
Damage is seen from a tornado which killed at least 23 people in Beauregard, Alabama on March 4, 2019. - Rescuers in Alabama were set to resume search operations Monday after at least two tornadoes killed 23 people, uprooted trees and caused 'catastrophic' damage to buildings and roads in the southern US state.'The devastation is incredible,' Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones told the local CBS affiliate late Sunday.'I cannot recall at least in the last 50 years... a situation where we have had this loss of life that we experienced today.' (Photo by Tami Chappell / AFP) (Photo credit should read TAMI CHAPPELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Damage is seen from a tornado which killed at least 23 people in Beauregard, Alabama on March 4, 2019. - Rescuers in Alabama were set to resume search operations Monday after at least two tornadoes killed 23 people, uprooted trees and caused 'catastrophic' damage to buildings and roads in the southern US state.'The devastation is incredible,' Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones told the local CBS affiliate late Sunday.'I cannot recall at least in the last 50 years... a situation where we have had this loss of life that we experienced today.' (Photo by Tami Chappell / AFP) (Photo credit should read TAMI CHAPPELL/AFP/Getty Images)
Carol Dean, right, cries while embraced by Megan Anderson and her 18-month-old daughter Madilyn, as Dean sifts through the debris of the home she shared with her husband, David Wayne Dean, who died when a tornado destroyed the house in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. "He was my wedding gift," said Dean of her husband whom she married three years ago. "He was one in a million. He'd send me flowers to work just to let me know he loved me. He'd send me some of the biggest strawberries in the world. I'm not going to be the same." (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Matthew Schell looks for personal mementos by flashlight at dusk in the rubble of the house destroyed by a tornado which killed his uncle, David Wayne Dean, in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Danny Allen recovers a family photo while sifting through the debris of a friend's home destroyed by a tornado in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Granadas Baker, left, and son Granadas Jr. 18, right, retrieve personal items from the damaged home where they survived a tornado a day earlier in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Debris from a home litters a yard the day after a tornado blew it off its foundation, lower right, in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Danny Allen helps recover belongings while sifting through the debris of a friend's home destroyed by a tornado in Beauregard, Ala., Monday, March 4, 2019. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Residents of Talbotton, Ga. pray together outside a home destroyed by a tornado the day after storms battered Alabama and Georgia, Monday, March 4, 2019. (Grant Blankenship /The Macon Telegraph via AP)
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Pearl and the Tigers will take on Alabama in Tuscaloosa on Tuesday night. Alabama coach Avery Johnson said Monday that both the Crimson Tide and Auburn are working to find a way to help victims of the storm through that game.

“We’re in the process of coming up with a game plan to see how we can help those affected by this tornado,” Johnson said Monday. “I think at the appropriate time they’ll have an announcement. (It’s) just very, very sad for a lot of families, people and probably fans of both universities that are going to be playing in this game tomorrow night. Prayers go out to all those affected by this devastating tornado.”

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