Welcome back to SHERMAN'S MARCH TO THE SEA. I, General Sherman, spent some time in the Union-friendly city of Monroe, Louisiana, before moving in on the next enemy of the Big Ten. Thus, I set out for Oxford, Mississippi.
This wretched hive of scum and villainy was named after the famed British university in the hopes of confusing the state legislature enough that they'd award it the state university. True story.
The Ole Miss Rebels represent the University of Mississippi and their name is shortened to Ole Miss for the benefit of their fans. It's a difficult word when your state ranks dead last in educational performance. Vaught-Hemingway Stadium adorably expanded its capacity past 60,000 for this year. CONGRATULATIONS ON ECLIPSING PURDUE'S CAPACITY. WEREN'T YOU SEC PEOPLE SUPPOSED TO BE THE MOST FANATICAL COLLEGE FOOTBALL FANS? COULD IT BE THAT THIS IS JUST AN EXCUSE AS TO WHY YOU'VE GOT NOTHING ELSE GOING ON?
Anyway, Oxford. I passed through this place once in 1862, on my way to capture Vicksburg with General Grant. Oxford was fortunate that I was so hell-bent on capturing Vicksburg, as I spared it from burnination.
"To secure the safety of the navigation of the Mississippi River I would slay millions. On that point I am not only insane, but mad."
However, in 1864 as I was rampaging through Georgia, Confederate Major General Forrest was beginning to piss me off with his attempts to destroy my supply lines. I dispatched Major General Andrew Jackson Smith to hunt down this obnoxious pissant. At one point, he tracked Forrest to Oxford, only to learn he was in Memphis. Enraged, Smith decided to do his best impersonation of me and burn Oxford to the ground.
THAT THIS TEAM SHOULD CALL THEMSELVES THE REBELS DESPITE THE ACTUAL CONFEDERATE REBELS BEING ANNIHILATED TWICE IN OXFORD IS ABOUT AS IRONIC AS IT IS TREASONOUS. YOU FOUGHT THE UNITED STATES AND YOU LOST. IT'S TIME TO GET OVER IT.
Incidentally, the three highest-attended home games in Ole Miss history were all losses.
Speaking of losses, how long do you think you have until Mr. Freeze is lost forever due to the NCAA? Furthermore, just who is the mystery woman who hustled Laremy Tunsil off the stage after he admitted taking money at Ole Miss? Not that the whole country didn't know about the Ole Miss bagmen before, but now it's as out in the open as anything of this nature has ever been. Hugh Freeze is the only person that was "shocked" by Tunsil's admission. Ole Miss had three first round draft picks this year. Freeze had unprecedented recruiting success immediately based on a 10-2 season at Arkansas State. THE SMELL OF THE BONG SMOKE CAN'T HIDE THE SMELL OF THE BAGMEN, MR. FREEZE.
Prior to Tunsil, the best known offensive linemen out of Ole Miss was Michael Oher, who was famously taught to pass block by Sandra Bullock. She probably should have been hired on as a position coach at Ole Miss, because they went 1-3 against Vanderbilt during Oher's four years there.
Let's examine the past, though. Why would people be suspicious of Hugh Freeze having such immediate recruiting success at Ole Miss?
His predecessor was Houston Nutt, who managed to win 9 games in 2008 and sneak Ole Miss into the AP Top 5 early in 2009. Quarterback Jevan Snead briefly overcame his impossibly silly name to look like a decent football player, until they went to South Carolina to pick up their first loss. Snead's performance suffered so much over 2009 that he wasn't even drafted. In 2010, disgraced former Oregon Ducks quarterback Jeremiah Masoli won the starting job as a walk-on, but displayed the poor decision-making and lack of elusiveness that led to his arrest for stealing laptops and TV's from frat houses in Eugene. Nutt would be fired after losing twelve straight conference games.
In the mid-2000s, Ed Orgeron ranted incoherently through a 10-25 (3-21) record over three seasons following the dismissal of David Cutcliffe, who went on to build a winner at Duke (DUKE, FOR FUCK'S SAKE. DUKE FOOTBALL.) At the time, going 3-5 in conference play was unacceptable. The next two coaches wouldn't be fired until they'd gone 0-8 in conference, so that's the new bar.
Trollin' Tommy Tuberville coached at Ole Miss in the 90's. I don't even need to make a joke about his tenure:
Despite taking over a Rebels team under severe NCAA scholarship sanctions, he was named the SEC Coach of the Year in 1997 by the AP. During his tenure, he acquired the nickname "The Riverboat Gambler" for his aggressive play calling, particularly on fourth down. While at Ole Miss, Tuberville made the statement, "They’ll have to carry me out of here in a pine box," in reference to not leaving to coach at another school. Two days after he made that statement, it was announced that he was departing for Auburn.
Thus, nobody expected recruiting to immediately be in the top 5 once Hugh Freeze took over and it was pretty obvious that bagmen were heavily involved. The NCAA turned a blind eye and in 2014, #3 Ole Miss went to LSU after having taken down the Alabama Crimson Tide. Take a look at this series of decisions. From Mr. Freeze, who outsmarted himself against Les Miles, to the errant gunslinging of Bo Wallace, whose name sounds more like an 80's NASCAR driver than anyone's name should, so many people did so many things wrong. Thus they'd go from 7-0 in the top 3 to winning only two more games. They'd beat Alabama again in 2015 only to lose to Florida, Arkansas and MEMPHIS. Thus, despite beating Nick Saban's Tide two years in a row, Ole MIss STILL hasn't won a conference championship since 1963, under Johnny Vaught. THE LAST TIME MY CONFERENCE BEAT ALABAMA, THAT TEAM WON THE NATIONAL TITLE. YOU'VE SQUANDERED MORE OPPORTUNITIES THAN LANE KIFFIN.
The Johnny Vaught era was indeed the golden age for Ole Miss football, as they won three national titles in 1959, 1960 and 1962. Yes sir, 1962 was a great time to be on the Ole Miss campus.
Speaking of anachronistic things, it wasn't until 2003 that Colonel Reb, an awfully plantation-y looking caricature, was discontinued as the Ole Miss mascot. Despite a campaign for Admiral Ackbar, in 2010 Rebel, The Black Bear was chosen as the new Ole MIss mascot. YOU MISSED THE CHANCE TO DO SOMETHING AWESOME AND INSTEAD WENT WITH AN ARBITRARY FOOTBALL BEAR. GO ARBITRARY FOOTBALL BEAR!
Ole MIss is also the alma mater of Archie and Eli Manning. Peyton, being far and away the most talented Manning, decided he was having nothing to do with Ole Miss. Congratulations on producing two subpar Mannings, one of whom happened to stumble his way to two Super Bowl wins somehow.
A national organization will soon come down hard upon the southern Rebels for the way they choose to handle their labor force. Sound familiar?
I HOPE THE HAMMER COMES SWIFT AND HARD FOR YOU, OLE MISS, BUT EVEN IF IT DOESN'T, YOU'LL STILL NEVER WIN THE SEC AGAIN. THEN YOU'LL HAVE TO POINT TO YOUR LAST RUN OF NATIONAL RELEVANCE, WHICH WAS OVERSHADOWED BY THE FACT THAT YOU VIOLENTLY RIOTED BECAUSE A BLACK PERSON WAS TRYING TO ATTEND YOUR SCHOOL IN 1962. YOUR GLORY COMES WITH A BIG SIDE OF SHAME. ALSO A DRINK AND DESSERT OF SHAME THAT LEAVES A SHAMEFUL AFTERTASTE. THE CONFEDERACY CONSISTED OF SLAVEMASTERS AND TRAITORS AND I'M GLAD IT'S DEAD.
HOTTY TODDY GOSH ALMIGHTY WHO THE HELL ARE YOU? POWERED BY ILLICIT BAGMEN, OLE MISS, THAT'S WHO.
Mississippi's Next B1G Matchup: After 1862 and 1864, Oxford has wisely avoided conflict with my forces for the foreseeable future.
Sherman's Next Destination: Troy, AL