A Little Civility Lesson for Egg Bowl Week


Spruce DerdenUSA TODAY Sports

It’s Egg Bowl Week. Are you ready to be called a stupid, redneck prick?

If you’re an Ole Miss fan reading this, are you ready to be called a stuck up, selfish prick?

Sports are a lot of fun to follow, and the the Internet and Social Media have opened up a ton of avenues for us to follow our teams. With the advent of Twitter, we can interact with our favorite players and coaches like we never thought possible when we were kids. There has never been a better time to be a sports fan in our country.

With every good, there is always some bad it seems like. While we have more access and coverage than ever before, we also use these avenues to treat other human beings like pieces of trash. I am going to write this as unbiased as possible. I know there will likely be some Ole Miss fans that read this and I think both fanbases should remember a few things as we go into one of the most hostile weeks of the year for our beloved state. I married an Ole Miss alum, so I have a good background on how to handle the other side of the rivalry.

Rebel (or Bulldog) Fans are People Too

I know we think it is okay to run someone into the ground and talk about how trashy their Momma is, and how ugly his sister is because we are doing it on a computer. Most people who do this also use anonymous screen names on blogs and social media sites. If their name isn’t attached to it, then they feel that they can get away with a lot more stupid stuff. It’s a shame that people think that, but it is what is. Just remember before you run that person into the ground for saying something positive about their favorite team or player, that there is a real person on the other side of that account. If you think you are a big shot because you just drove someone into the ground on an Internet post, let me assure you, you’re not. You’re actually one of the smallest most insignificant human beings alive if that brings you great joy. Just sayin’.

Don’t be Lured in by Outlandish Statements

Dan Mullen is going to be called a Scientologist, Yankee A-hole numerous time this week. He will be called a zero class low life that perfectly represents Mississippi State. Hugh Freeze will be called a hypocritical, self righteous moron. Ole Miss fans will be told how they will be the laughingstock of the NCAA when they see him bolt for another job at another bigger name program and Ole Miss fans bought into the whole “dream job” spiel that Freeze sold when he first got there.

Don’t respond.

Another sad reality about people is that many now enjoy making these types of remarks simply to see how much of a stir it causes. They want you to respond. They get a kick out of it. It’s a sad reflection on them, but so many people take the bait. If you take the bait, and you get personally attacked in a manner similar to what I talked about in my first point, then don’t be shocked and appalled by what someone says. Before I started writing for this website, I always had a personal policy that I would never respond to someone who attack me on a message board and not the subject that I wrote about. If they called me stupid, ignorant or whatever, I always ignored it. I only responded to people who addressed what I posted about. It’s a pretty good way of keeping your cool and never letting a discussion get out of hand. If someone declared that they had “won” the argument because I never responded, I just them have that victory since it is so important to them. That is always their final way of trying to goad you into some argument over something that probably has nothing to do with what you posted about in the first place. Just let them have it.

Leave the Academic Institutions out of it

No matter what you may think about the fanbase of the rival school, the quality of the schools are the same. Why do I say this? I say this because the admission standards for all schools in the state are the same. You don’t have to have a higher degree of intelligence to get into either school. What about the rankings by U.S. News? State was ranked 142 this year and Ole Miss was ranked 150. Not much of a gap. Sometimes it’s flip flopped. The normal gap between the two schools is normally about the same. The schools are no doubt different from each other, but one isn’t better than the other.

Also remember, when you destroy Ole Miss for being snobby, arrogant jerks, you need to remember that you probably know someone who went there and are close to them, and that close friend or family member just got lumped into the rest of that group. If you destroy Mississippi State for having hillbilly rednecks who don’t know how to drive anything except farm equipment, the same applies to you. Just don’t go there.

Feel free to talk about the incompetence of the coaching staffs. Feel free to say that Bo Wallace might not throw so many picks if he didn’t have all that hair in his eyes. Feel free to say that Chris Jones only wishes he was Robert Nkemdiche. Whatever. Just make sure you keep it to athletics.

The Fringe isn’t Representative of the Entire Fanbase

No matter how stupid a small portion of the fanbase can be on the Internet, it is important to remember that the people who are stupid on the Internet do not represent the behavior and responses of that entire fanbase. I have seen some pretty stupid things said by fans of both schools, but there is no way that I think Ole Miss fans in general are like the morons who sit behind a computer screen and say idiotic things. I know this because I married one. Please remember that this week when a fan of the opposing school says something dumb about the other one. We all have fans we are ashamed of. If there were something we could do about them, we would, but we can’t .

This week can be a lot of fun, but it can also make your blood pressure boil if you let some of the stupidity that is out there get to you. Ignore it and you will probably be a much happier person in the long run. You’ll be a much BETTER person in the long run if you don’t  contribute to it.