Like so many others, I made the trip to New Orleans this past weekend to cheer on the Rebs to an 11-win season. Unfortunately, the result wasn’t what we wanted, but having the opportunity to play in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day is never something to be sad about let’s be honest.
I made it to New Orleans a few days earlier than most people and was able to enjoy the city before it got incredibly out of hand. The first night I arrived, I made my way to see Bourbon St. around 5 P.M. It was my first time ever seeing it at night. It is always cool to see places like that, but there is seriously nothing like the smell. I kept thinking about sitting out on one of those balconies and people watching for hours - there were a lot of different characters out there.
For me, the very best part of New Orleans is the food. Every single thing I ate was unbelievable. It was really hard to find a reservation or get into a lot of places, but the ones that we were able to sneak in into, did not disappoint.
Copper Vine was the first food stop. The best way I can describe it is Cajun tapas. We shared a bunch of little appetizers and every single thing was incredible. The Cajun carrots and gnocchi were next level. I am typically not a huge dessert fan, but they brought out the most amazing beignets. After having those, there was no point in wasting time standing in line at Cafe du Monde.
The next best place that we ate at was Chais Delachaise. It was a little bit further away from the French Quarter but so amazing. We had a late lunch before the game, and it was perfect. If you ever find yourself here, order the pasta and the whole fish. Both were incredible.
I couldn’t believe how well Ole Miss traveled to the game. For days, the traffic was so bad with the majority of the cars having Ole Miss stickers on them. On the way to the game, Ole Miss fans were walking in droves. It honestly looked like there was one Baylor fan for every 50 Ole Miss fans. I made it to the game about an hour before kickoff and again was shocked to see how many Ole Miss fans had shown up early for the game. Even with a loss, it’s good to see the Ole Miss fanbase knows how to show up.
Now it’s time to hurt some feelings. The Caesars Superdome is really, really cool, from the outside. But once you get inside, it’s very underwhelming. I was sitting on the Ole Miss side on the lower part. The floor was so slimy that my feet were constantly sliding. One of the weirder parts was that there were no cup holders. At the concession stands, they took off the bottle caps, but then we had no place to put the drinks. It was a very weird part of the whole experience.
The game was honestly hard to watch from the start. Watching Matt Corral go down was brutal, and things didn’t really get much better after that. Luke Altmyer looked very good for a true freshman in a tough situation, and I think that his future at Ole Miss will be very bright. While I would have loved a win, coming away with 10 wins and a Sugar Bowl appearance in year two of Lane Kiffin is more than satisfactory. New Orleans was amazing, and I’m already looking forward to next year.