Once again, we have surpassed the icy constraints of amateur internet journalism to amateur printed journalism. The Local Voice #65 beckons you. Heed its call. Or, simply, read below.
OXFORD, MISS. (TLV) -Not since Eli Manningwas slangin’ rock (no, not that kind) have The Rebelshad any hopes whatsoever at a bowl, except to delusional fans like myself. I know it’s tough to make reference to the "Little Engine that Tried Not To" from Oxford as being bowl-capable, but let’s analyze the rest of the conference in what I like to call "AROUND THE SEC." Cue the low-budget synthesizer power chords.
Let’s take a look at the first tier SEC programs. For these teams, success has come early and often in the season. Florida,
Georgia, Alabama, and LSUhave good records thus far and appear to be poised for certain bowl runs. We’re one for one
against that group so far in the season, and I think it’s possible for the wascally webels to weach, er... reach two for three. I’m not going to say whether we’ll beat LSU or Alabama, but we might... could... maybe... beat one. To beat Georgia, we would need some sort of complex time transportation mechanism. A magical telephone booth would work.
Then there’s the second tier of SEC schools. This group is made up of the "bowl likelies." Vanderbilt, South Carolina, and Auburn make up this group. Vanderbilt. Why God? Why Vanderbilt? Can’t they just stick to winning Quiz Bowl competitions and Nobel Prizes or something? I’m still holding out hope that Vanderbilt’s loss to Mississippi Statelast weekend is going to lead to a downward spiral ending their season at 5- 7, but that’s not likely at this
Next, there’s the group of teams with bowl possi- bilities. This group is significantly smaller than one might expect. This group will be fighting for one to two bowl bids. Kentucky and Ole Miss are really the only teams in this category. People, including myself, laughed at Kentucky early on in the season, but they kept it close against Alabama
and South Carolina.
Lastly, there are the bowl near-impossibilities. That’s Tennessee, Mississippi State, Arkansas. I don’t think that any of those teams have legitimate chances to get a bowl bid. Mississippi State just really screwed up their program by beating Vanderbilt. Now, Sylvester Croom isn’t going to be fired. Prolonging the inevitable isn’t something you generally want to hear in a conference like the SEC.
So why do the Rebels fit into tier three of the bowl sweep- stakes instead of tier four? While the rebels couldn’t figure out how to win after leading 14-3 early against South Carolina, don’t forget that this is the same rebel team who ripped Tim Tebow’s highlight-yielding crocs off of his feet and clipped his angel wings. Sure, some of the victory over Florida was gift-wrapped for our favorite team to cry for, but the Rebels stopped the Heisman winner from being able to gain a single yard on fourth and one.
The rebels only need three victories to gain bowl eligibility, and those are bound to come with games remaining against
Auburn, Arkansas, ULM, and MSU. If we can’t beat three of those teams, we’re in for trouble during Nutt’s tenure. With next
year looking likely to be a "rebuilding" year, it would be great if we were rebuilding from a team that managed to win as many
games as it lost.
I know that I’m not usually one to be so optimistic, but damnit, I’m ready to go to a bowl. Let it be Shreveport,
Louisiana. Let it be Memphis, Tennessee. Let it be Mantachie, Mississippi. Just let it be.