First things first, y'all stay safe out there. The weather's getting pretty gnarly in the Southeast this week, so be diligent in keeping you and yours out of harm's way.
Now, onto what is shaping up to be the biggest news so far in the SEC's offseason. The Southeastern Conference has announced that football scheduling will, starting 2016, include mandatory out of conference opponents from one of the four other major conferences - i.e., the ACC, Big XII, B1G, or Pac 12. Each SEC school must schedule at least one, meaning that Ole Miss will have to do so as soon as possible (no, Memphis doesn't count, because the Zombie Big East is somehow worse than than its predecessor).
This is a decision that was made instead of beefing up the SEC slate by adding a ninth conference game to each team's schedule, decisions which both would have helped each conference member's strength of schedule. This move, unlike its alternative, puts the conference in a position to offer more exciting and interesting matchups for fans from both the Southeast and points out yonder, and therefore increase television revenues and exposure for the conference's brand(s).
Personally, I think this is an excellent decision. I can understand why some, including LSU's AD, wouldn't support it - tougher out of conference matchups on top of an already tough SEC slate makes for difficult championship resume building - but for the sake of college football itself this is a great move. I look forward to who Ole Miss schedules in 2016 and the ensuing opportunities to see the Rebels play everywhere from Chestnut Hill to Los Angeles.
Also of note:
Nik Scholtz won SEC Player of the Year. Here he is reacting to the news: