Purple shirts. Yellow britches.
We will not defeat #1 LSU this Saturday.
You know it, I know it, they know it, our team knows it, Houston Nutt knows it. Hell, even Hotty Toddy Man knows it. We didn't need to be bettered by Louisiana Tech at home by twenty points to know this.
Our team is just too inept, chaotic, lackadaisical, and uninspired to beat, well, anyone, let alone the single best college football team in the nation.
Sure, Saturday's game might be closer than the experts think, with a few big plays here and some defensive stands there keeping it a competitive match early - a la the Arkansas and LSU games. But if you've got visions of ankle-breaking punt returns for touchdowns, 80 yard bombs to a wide open Donte Moncrief, acrobatic Charles Sawyer interceptions, comfortable running lanes dominated by a thundering Enrique Davis, and passes thrown to and caught by Derrick Herman, then I must insist, sir or madam, that you are deluding yourself.
We can't win this, and we won't win this. We've got a lame duck head coach leading a team which appears to have already checked out on the year going up against the crazier-than-hell, luckiest sumbitch alive in Les Miles who, I imagine, is quite fed up with this notion that one Houston Dale Nutt "has his number." It will be a thrashing, complete with bizarre playcalls that somehow work in LSU's favor every, single, time; jaw-rattling violence that sends a chorus of hushed "oooooh"s throughout the Rebel crowd; Tyrann Mathieu injuring people for breathing in his direction; and the wild flailing of arms and churning of legs in a chaotic clustering in a hot mess of humanity - all played out over an hour's time divided intervals of five-to-ten painful, painful seconds.
It will get ugly and could, perhaps, get even uglier than the Alabama game.
No folks, no matter how badly we want to win this football game against a team many of us would consider our chief Southeastern Conference rival, we can't.
But there is something we can do.
We can win the party.
"Oh gosh, not this again."
Look, I agree. I think we all agree that too many of our fans are so content to rest on their laurels after an embarrassing home loss because "well, shucks, 'least we got the Grove 'n' 'em y'all! Who wants a bloody mary?" It is that very contentment with being a glorified country club in the eyes of many of the Rebel partisans which, in part, led to the creation of this very blog. We want to not only have the best gosh darned hootenanny within a 500 mile radius of our campus, but we also want to win the damn football game as well.
But, for this week, we're going to have to do exactly what it is that we tell ourselves we stand against. We are going to have to win the party while embarrassingly losing the game, and we are going to have to be entirely fine with that. We are going to somehow show the fans of the number one football team in America that, despite the heartbreak, the shame, and the bewilderment we all have endured over the past two years regarding our Houston Nutt-led program, we are still Ole Miss and, for reasons we can never fully articulate but somehow fully understand, we're damn proud of it.
It will not be easy, especially considering the throwin'-it-down-itude of the lunatics we'll be allowing onto our campus this weekend, but it can be done. Oh, sure, they've got their loud-ass band, gaudy-ass colors, inordinate amounts of flavor food, smarmy attitudes and a complete lack of shame (something which I am convinced is a genetic trait shared amongst the Louisianan peoples), but what we've got is something that no college football fan anywhere on this planet can match.
We've got an alcohol tolerance that only years upon years of watching this roller coaster ride we call a football program - a program marked with years of pseudo-greatness sandwiched between those of heartbreak and defeat - can produce. We've got a palate for fine wines, a stomach for cheap beers, and a mind which can only be numbed by the brownest of brown liquors.
So let them have their fun. Let them roll into town, fuzzy tiger tails flapping from their Trans-Am antennas and shitty horn music rattling out of their speakers. Let them think they own the place, elbowing their way in and out of bars, being generally vile and uncouth. Let them feel a sense of entitlement as the most eclectic, outré fans of the single most talented football team in the United States. Go ahead and let them get comfortable.
Because, after a 48 hour marathon of north Mississippi's crisp autumn air, Oxford's endless good vibes, John Currence's food, and the finest spirits the Bluegrass State has to offer (as well as a lopsided football game littered with ironic Hotty Toddies), one fan base will emerge as the end-all be-all champion of partiers - and it fuckin' better be us.
Just win the party, baby.