Saturday, November 17, 2007

Game Day: Ole Miss

Today, Mrs. GeauxTuscaloosa's family is coming over. They have tickets to the Bama-ULM game (they're Bama fans). They're bringing Mrs. GeauxTuscaloosa with them. You know what that means? I'll be home with the baby, just the two of us, watching the LSU-Ole Miss game. I'll also be making a pot of red beans and rice. The beans have been soaking since last night, and I'll start chopping the vegetables after everyone leaves the house to go to the Bama game.

So, that gives you an idea of my schedule, and here it is:

Now to 9:30am: Get the house cleaned up for guests. The living room must be vacuumed and the laundry must be at least off the floor. Also, I must make the syrup for mock-Toomer's Corner lemonade. Here's how you do it. Make a simple syrup and place in a large decanter, such as a tea jug. Squeeze the juice from a bunch of lemons into a second decanter (such as a measuring cup), doing your best to separate the seeds. Add a half-cup of syrup to 1/4 cup of lemon juice, and add water and ice until it's at your desired sweetness. Good stuff.

This is also one of the baby's LSU game days. If I haven't explained this yet, it's a good story. You must know that my wife is a Bama football fan (though she hates Bama basketball, and roots for Kentucky in basketball, which I still consider cheating). How we manage to get along is something of a miracle, but we manage.

Anyway, when we were pregnant, one of the things we discussed was how the baby would dress on game days in football season. Naturally, I wanted her to dress in LSU gear on game days. My wife, pregnant and not thinking clearly, wanted her to dress in Bama gear. A compromise had to be reached. We sat down and negotiated a schedule of game day gear for the baby. She could wear LSU gear on certain days, and would wear Bama gear on others. Given the need to compromise this, it actually worked out OK, because some of our biggest games coincided with weeks that Bama was playing some nobody, and vice versa. The biggest bone of contention was the week of the Auburn-LSU game and Bama-Tennessee game (same week). Ultimate she pulled the I'm- the- one- carrying- her- for- 9- months- and- not- sleeping- and- throwing- up- all- the- time- and- having- to- go- through- labor card on me (grossly unfair, I say), and she won that battle.

9:30am - 11:30am: Visit. Make lemonade for people. I imagine that at some point during this time, they will want to go to the campus to walk around. We will part ways at that time. If they leave before 11:30am, I will cut up my vegetables at that time. I'll start checking in on Ohio State at Michigan as well.

11:30am - 2:00pm: Watch Georgia vs. Kentucky on Lincoln-Financial, while kind of keeping up with Ohio State at Michigan. Georgia has been the best team in the SEC lately, blowing out Auburn and beating Florida by 12 in the last 3 weeks. It wasn't that long ago, however, that this team was completely dismantled by Tennessee (who isn't that great) and was almost beaten by Vandy. They've been hot lately, but I think it's thin and could conceivably all come crashing down at any time. Then again, they might not. Kentucky's late season swoon is something of a mystery. They looked really good against us, and then they lose to Florida and get blown out by MSU, before winning a close game against Vandy. Not long ago, this was a top 10 team. Now, they're an also-ran in the SEC East. I really anticipate this to be a good matchup. Everyone's hyping Georgia lately, but I'm not convinced they can keep it up. Everyone's down on Kentucky, but I'm not convinced they're down for good.

2:00pm - 2:30pm: Get the vegetables sautee'ing, and get the beans boiling, all while trying to catch the end of the Georgia-Kentucky game. Get that done by 2:30pm if possible, but if it isn't, rest assured that Tivo has my back.

2:30pm - 6:00pm: LSU at Ole Miss, CBS. One of my blogging compatriots, over at this site, believes that Ole Miss is basically a terrible team. I respectfully disagree. I think that if Ole Miss was in another conference, even in a solid conference like the Big 12, they would be a middle-of-the-road team. Maybe they'd be overmatched in the Pac-10 as well, but in many conference, they'd be a decent team. I think they're as good as Purdue, for example, and Purdue is 7-4. This is not to say they're a particularly good team, the Rebels, but don't overlook them. I've happened to see their two best played games on the year, against Florida and against Bama. They were really able to do some things, and they showed considerable athleticism. They ended up losing both of those games, but they were very close, and did not let those games get away from them. I've seen their receivers do some amazing things this year, and Greg Hardy is probably the second-best defensive lineman in the conference behind our own Mr. Heisman, Glen Dorsey.

It is certainly true that Ole Miiss lacks the depth that we have, and does not have the NFL-calibre talent all over the field that we possess (really, how many of our starters won't at least get a free agent contract when they turn pro?) But they've got good players and good athletes at some key positions, including on the offensive and defensive lines, at running back, at linebacker, and at wide receiver. Some of that talent is young and relatively inexperienced. Some of that talent is playing among less talented people. But it's not like this is the gang that couldn't shoot straight. They have enough good players at key positions that if we do not come to play, we will have a real fight on our hands.

Of course, if we come to play and don't make the mistakes we made in past games, we will win by several touchdowns. They have good players, but we have a lot more good players. Just don't assume this is an easy win, because it may not be at all.

Starting at 5:30, if the game is well in hand at that time, it will be time to make the rice.

6:00pm - 7:00pm: Entertain the guests with crazy stories of my brief stint as a New York playwright and feed them red beans and rice. They will then depart for home.

7:00pm - bedtime: I don't know. There's no SEC game on. Perhaps I'll watch Oklahoma against Texas Tech, if we even get it here. I just checked, and it looks like we get it. Or maybe I'll read a book.


gerry dorsey said...

i agree with you. ole miss is not a great team, but they are better than their record. however, much like the bama game, ole miss will only hang around as long as lsu will let them via turnovers and penalties.

i also agree with you about uga/tenn. as an lsu hater (can't help it), i'm pulling for uga to find a way to come out of the east, b/c lsu will throttle tenn.

great story about the baby gear. my question though, is what did the baby wear on november 3rd???

Richard Pittman said...

That's a good question. When we were negotiating, it became clear that there was no way to compromise that day except to simply declare it a neutral day. The baby would wear no colors.