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Hey Kool-Aid ... OH YEAH!

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Between Jevan Snead, Houston Nutt, the 2008 Liberty Bowl, Derek Pegues, Jerrell Powe, and
some greased-up, slimmed-down Norm Chow wanna-be that Southern Miss hired, the optimism about football in Mississippi is reaching just absurd levels.

Let's call it the Kool-Aid quotient. Last weekend, my cousin pointed out to me (mind you, he's twelve) that some guy in the Mobile Press-Register called Mississippi State the dark horse favorite to win the SEC. The outstanding character and discipline in Starkville notwithstanding, this is clearly something one might dream up only under the influence of some new brand of psychodelic mushroom-swirl gouda they've cooked up down at the 'Tippi 'Tate dairy farm.

Meanwhile, this story was recounted to me by someone who covers Ole Miss football:

"Ole Miss has some talent, but I've heard several people in the past few days say that 8 or 9 wins is realistic and that Powe will win 2 games by himself. That's kinda ridiculous. I'm not sure any d-lineman in the country is worth a 2-game swing. It's amazing how high the expectations are for Powe. Amazing. I saw some guy post on a message board that 'Now I can get on with my life' after Powe was cleared."

And please don't get me started on the flagship school of the state. Here, as a reminder, is how Fedora tactfully handled the nagging fact that is AD is certifiable:
And of course, Coach Jeff Bower. You can never replace a Jeff Bower. He is a living legend, who will always be remembered for his contributions to the Southern Miss program and to the university. Coach Bower built a foundation and established a legacy that we will embrace and build upon to bring this program back to a championship level.

Let's see grape is purple, fruit punch is red, orange is, well, orange ... but I forgot, what color is hubris again?

All three teams have some monstrous strengths (the defensive line in Oxford, the secondary in Starkville, the conference affiliation in Hattiesburg), but they also have noticeable deficiencies (Cornerbacks? What are cornerbacks?). Also, did Larry Fedora forget to mention to you Golden Eagle fans that a high-flying offense requires something along the lines of a quarterback? Your returning leader in passing is Martevious Young, who probably won't be your starter on day 1 because he's thrown for TWO YARDS IN HIS CAREER!

The long and short is that we have a lot of football fans living in dreamworld right now - of course, most southeastern football fans decided long ago to set up permanent residency there. So, grip 'n' sip and let us know who is drank the most Kool-Aid in '08.

My vote is for Southern Miss. It might seem that the Rebs and Bulldogs are mighty uppity, but the vocal minority in Hattiesburg have this sense of entitlement about them that is ... nauseating.