Like everyone else in this game, she started with a secret partner, her friend Eric Littmann. But when he was evicted she tells The Early Show co-anchor and "Big Brother" host Julie Chen, "It became immediately game-on.
"Everything was turned upside down," Ausburn says. "I had to get intense, get aggressive and start playing. And I really wanted to enjoy my time in the house. The only way to enjoy my time was to meet friends that I would have for the rest of my life, and I did that. I have four other people after Eric left and we formed an amazing alliance. That's why we were called 'The Friend Ship,' because we really cared about each other."
Some of her fellow houseguests wondered, however, if, as the mastermind, she used the "alliance" to further herself at their expense.
"That's really hard to hear, to be totally honest," Ausburn says. "I didn't know I was seen as the mastermind, first of all. But every single person within that friendship thought it was an equal alliance. We thought we were all leaders."
First runner-up Ivette Corredero says, "I think Maggie did watch out for everybody in the group. I do. I hate to be part of that friendship now, to be honest. That sounds horrible to say. I never liked the name 'Friend Ship' anyways. It's hard to play that game and say that you have a friendship going on."
At the end of the game, it looked as if the 25-year-old waitress from Miami Beach had given up after rejecting Janelle Pierzina's proposal to stick together to the end.
"The way I saw it, was it came down to Maggie, April and myself," Corredero explains. "There was going to be no way I was going to win either against Maggie or April, just because of the people who were going to be on the jury. Even if I were against Janelle, throwing the competition or having to now pick me; it wouldn't have worked out."