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Weekend Review: Spur of the moment trip to Columbia, S.C.

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Super-secret spy mission to get the lowdown on Will Muschamp and Jimbo Fisher

NCAA Football: Texas A&M at South Carolina Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

An Ole Miss bye week opened up an opportunity for me and a couple of friends to hit the road at 4 a.m. Saturday to witness what was sure to be an intriguing game* between Texas A&M and South Carolina last week.

* “interesting game” is code for “slow-and-steady death march that resulted in a blowout”

I came away with a few takeaways from my trip to the Soda City, and since SC and A&M are the Rebs’ next two opponents on the schedule (barring COVID-19 and typical 2020 behavior), I thought I’d share some of them below.

Note: many (most?) of these notes won’t be game-related since A&M won the game 48-3 lolz, but instead will be #culture related and some taeks about Muschamp.

Columbia is cool, the campus is meh.

Let’s get this out of the way: Columbia isn’t Oxford, and as a kid who grew up in rural north Mississippi, attending school in a state capital city wasn’t high on my list when deciding on where to go to college. Still, for those of you who like bigger cities, Columbia has plenty to offer and a lot of history to go along with it. On Sunday morning, for instance, my friends and I dined at Cantina 76 in the shadow of the capitol building. Pulled pork tacos are good, folks! More importantly, they might also be sandwiches like our friend the hot dog - think it over.

Noted-Columbia-experts Michael Borkey and Zach Berry were helpful in lining up some of the sights for us to see, so shoutout to the boys for your expertise.

ON THE OTHER HAND, South Carolina’s campus leaves a lot to be desired. I realize at Ole Miss, we’re blessed with an elite campus setting and metropolitan schools have very little room to work with, but I was largely underwhelmed. Maybe we missed some of it on our driving tour, but, according to factual-resource Wikipedia, the University of South Carolina’s campus makes up some 359 acres. According to the same source, Ole Miss’ campus makes up over 2,000 acres. So just not a lot of room to wow an individual there.

Cock fans are #mad with Will Muschamp.

I may or may not have joined in with the Gamecock faithful in booing their head coach even though I had no rooting interest in the matter of the game. I tend to get swept away by emotion.

To illustrate how upset some of SC’s faithful were, take a look at this tweet from one Walker Bailey who was with me on this trip.

There be trouble brewing in paradise!

South Carolina’s state flag is very good.

Since we the people of Mississippi have spent a lot of time online TALMBOUT SYMBOLS AND FLAGS in recent days, I thought this was worth mentioning. The South Carolina flag is simple and instantly recognizable: two things that are key in establishing a good brand. A plain blue field accented by a white moon and palmetto tree make this banner solid in my book.

The Gamecocks, however, are not very good.

Sweet Lord at the pain this offense gave me, an innocent bystander, in watching on Saturday. Sure, there was a sure touchdown dropped on the first possession of the game, but it’s never a good sign when fans are clamoring for the backup QB to get more playing time, which was the case in Williams-Brice last week (and presumably all season). If this week’s game against Ole Miss somehow turns into a shootout, I like the Rebels’ chances.