For many of you, I trust, it is now officially "football season". Baseball is now in your collective rear view mirrors as you join our brethren to the south in over-analyzing every minor facet of our pigskin program until August - but not me. No, I have some unfinished business to take care of in this annual tournament of torture that has become such an integral part of our lives – an event we simultaneously anticipate and dread from February to June. Bowing out of the tourney has become as much an Oxfordian rite of spring as Double Decker, Derby Days and even the FOP, Etc. Convention (Fat, Old, Pasty White Men in Undersized Jerseys Bearing the Number of Whomever is Our Latest Deceptively Fast, Messianic Caucasian MPSAA Alum Convention some refer to as the "Grove Bowl").
Over these past few years of never-ending disappointment with our frustratingly consistent and solid baseball program, I've learned a lot about myself. What have I learned, you ask? I'm a jealous, spiteful son of a bitch. The success of other programs completely pisses me off. I've developed an attitude that because of all the trials the Rebel faithful have endured, we are somehow entitled to a lucky break, timely hot streak, whatever you want to call it. That’s right – a feeling of entitlement. Like a Bama Football fan without the success. This entitlement stirs the flames of hate in my soul when I see others succeed where we continue to fail.
Today’s hatred is directed at three schools whose baseball teams play for a Regional Championship today: Alabama, Auburn and Virginia. I'll be rooting against each of these teams tonight with all the passion with which I rooted for the Rebels over the weekend. I want to see them go down. I want to watch them cry. I want to taste their tears.
To borrow a line from the legendary Frank Costanza, "I got a lot of problems with you people! And, now you’re gonna hear about it."
A Rebel Fan at heart via blog.mlive.com
Alabama fans – Congrats on the recent hot streak taking you from praying for Hoover to almost winning the SECT to probably winning the Atlanta Regional to playing your cow college cousins for a coveted spot in Omaha. But, spare me the insult of pretending you gave a shit about this team a month ago. You have a strong to pretty strong tradition in baseball over the last couple of decades. There’s no excuse for your paltry attendance for home SEC series. There’s no excuse for the less than stellar overall support you give your baseball program. Yeah, I know, the 80 percent of your fan base who never attended college only cares about football. Just don’t go around bragging about your suddenly awesome team. They may have earned it, but you sure as hell didn’t.
Auburn fans – Can we please stop acting like having 5,000 fans for your Regional games is a big deal? Ole Miss, MSU, LSU, Arkansas and South Carolina find this no less ridiculous than you guys find Ole Miss or State bragging about selling out our 55k/61k seat football stadiums for a big game. At least we have an excuse.
Virginia fans – I don’t suppose I really hate you. Definitely jealous, though. Just remember you owe us big time. Your new-found success is the direct result of the reverse Ole Miss curse. From time to time, third parties find themselves on the positive end of "the curse". Drawing John Grisham’s generosity to save the very existence of your program and drawing the 2009 Rebels as your Super Regional opponent are the only reason you went to Omaha last year and every year thereafter. Remember, they were about to shitcan your program altogether not too long ago, ya no-live video stream-having assholes.
State fans – (You don’t really fall into the category of non-deserving fan bases, but what the hell?) Enough warnings about how Cohen is going to wave some magic wand and send Ole Miss Baseball back to the pre-Bianco era. Omaha or no Omaha, we’re here and we ain’t leaving any time soon. So save us "wait’ll Cohen gits his players in here!" b.s. The only thing I’ve seen the man accomplish so far is turning Dudy-Noble into a fucking goat rodeo.
Most years, I'd be done with the tournament. I'd ignore it and barely even remember who ended up winning the CWS Championship. But for one more day, at least, I'll be following the games. Why? Because I really don't want to see Auburn or Alabama or Virginia win their Regional. Most importantly, I don't want to see either of the Yellowhammer State schools in Omaha. If both win their games tonight, one of them will be in Omaha. I'm not sure I can handle that. This may be considered blasphemy around here, but I'd rather have seen LSU make it than one of those two schools. At least LSU fans give a shit. 95 percent of the Bama and Auburn fans so excited about the tournament right now probably couldn't name more than two or three players in their lineup. And, that, my friends, pisses me off. How is it that we put so much energy, passion and support into this thing only to be left holding our dicks for the eighth year in a row while other schools seemingly find a way into Omaha the very instant they decide to give a shit about baseball?
I hear people say we just don’t' have the hitting or we don't have the bullpen or we don’t play enough small ball or Bianco isn't an elite coach. Frankly, I'm starting to think the biggest requirement for breaking through is to not be Ole Miss. Want proof? Look no further than recent CWS appearances and/or championships by Oregon State, Fresno State, Mississippi State and USM. And, with each passing season, the list grows. It will no doubt grow yet again in the next week as we Rebel fans sit helplessly, watching Alabama/Auburn race to Omaha like there’s nothing to it. And we’ll hear all about how great and wonderful their program is. And, next year, when they return to their usual routine of drawing MAYBE 4,000 fans to their biggest home SEC series, their fans will once again not give a shit and we’ll once again fill up the grandstands, Diamond Club and outfield terraces of Swayze – all-the-while knowing we’re only setting ourselves up for yet another June to forget.