Golly, this sure is getting confusing, isn't it? With competing political action committees (PACs) working to circumvent or support various foundations which are propped up by various associations and driven by large campaigns, one can see where the head scratchin' sets in.
Who exactly does what? Who hates whom? When is Houston Nutt going to be fired, again?
It seems that all of these competing interests have muddled the controversy in a way none of them could have anticipated. While they all have the idea that they're the ones best suited to make Ole Miss better, however one defines that, we realize that the differences between some of these couldn't be more drastic. So we here at the Cup have taken the time to look at each of these various entities of which you've likely heard over the past month or so and done our best to explain who or what these groups are, their goals, and their methods.
So here they are, the organizations you've likely had flood your inbox with requests for money and support. Sure, there's some overlap amongst a few of these, but we won't get too bogged down into the nuances of each and every one. We just want you to be sure you know for whom or what exactly it is you're opening your checkbooks.
The University of Mississippi Athletics Association (and Foundation): UMAA, as it is most popularly called, is the fund raising wing of the Ole Miss athletics department. They raise money to build things, fire coaches, fund scholarships, and otherwise support Pete Boone's mission.
The Ole Miss Alumni Association: When you were getting your information together for graduation in the student union that afternoon during your last semester at Ole Miss, these were the people giving away hats and pens and stuff. They organize alumni events, send out calendars and magazines, beg people for money, and are generally pleasant people.
Forward Together: This is the official athletics capital campaign announced earlier this year by Dan Jones and Pete Boone. The goal of Forward together is to raise $150M to both build a brand new basketball arena and expand the north endzone area of Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. You should give Forward Together some money if you can.
Forward Rebels: Here's where some real confusion sets in. Forward Rebels is not related to the athletics capital campaign. Forward Rebels is a group of Ole Miss alumni who have recently taken to the press to voice their displeasure with the Ole Miss administration. Their ire is largely directed at Dan Jones and Pete Boone, which is surprising only because Houston Nutt seems to be totally off of the hook with these guys and gals (he is not, I imagine, but they haven't led us to believe otherwise). In an interesting twist, Forward Rebels just lost their nonprofit status yesterday, something which you lawyerly types out there can explain better than I can. All I can make out of that is that they'll likely find it difficult to secure funds to run more oddly phrased and punctuated newspaper advertisements.
The Red/Blue PAC: An obvious response to Mississippi State's "Bully PAC," the Red/Blue PAC is concerned with electing state officials and promoting policies which better the university. It hasn't yet turned into a zealous, "GIVE US OUR TERDISHUNS" type of organization, which gives me reason to think that just maybe this one is exactly what it seems like in that it's a pro-Ole Miss group, whatever that may mean.
The Colonel Reb PAC: These are the people who I am on record as saying that they don't care about Ole Miss. They're trying to garner enough signatures to place on the 2012 ballot an initiative which would aim to amend the Mississippi state constitution to effectively force Ole Miss to reinstate Colonel Reb as a mascot and symbol, alongside a bunch of other stupid shit.
The Colonel Reb Foundation:
The Let's Burn the Chancellor's Home to the Ground and Pee on the Ashes Committee, Inc.: The name really says it all.
The Together Rebels Moving Forward Foundation of America: Founded on Twitter yesterday at around two in the afternoon by a somewhat bored yours truly, the TRMFFoA's goals are three fold: get rid of Sparky Reardon (for lulz), ensure that Chevron never runs out of crispitos, and overturn whatever law it is that says we Rebels can't have cold beer on the Sabbath. Other stances maintained by the TRMFFoA can be found by searching the hashtag #TRMMFoA on Twitter. Some of the more notable positions are:
- "To Hell with Checkers... free Chick-Fil-A in Vaught Hemingway" via @RounMcNeal
- "Sad trombone sound effects after every Stoudt interception" via @DurtyFlip
- "If we're going to have a bear, let's make it a live, angry one" via moi
- "The bejeweled Hotty Toddy man will be assigned to the visitors section" via @TrinityMotors
- "Fans will have the ability to vote on who will be quarterback via text polling" via @ChelseaLHelms
...amongst many, many others. It's a noble group. Join the cause. Or start your own PAC or foundation or something. See if I give a damn.