Dec 31, 2014; Atlanta , GA, USA; Mississippi Rebels mascot greets fans prior to the game against the TCU Horned Frogs in the 2014 Peach Bowl at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Paul Abell/CFA Peach Bowl via USA TODAY Sports
Just when you think you’ve seen it all, you get this. The Ole Miss athletic administration and some of their media are setting new standards for being thin-skinned. They are now stooping to the level of going after Mississippi State fans.
Are the Mississippi State fans who initiated these exchanges without blame? No – they did start it. But in the general interaction between fan and professional, it’s accepted practice for the pro to take the high road. By responding to opposing fans in this nature, you’re giving them a voice they didn’t have before. You’re elevating them to your level, or perhaps more accurately – you’re sinking to theirs.
It’s one thing for Ole Miss admin and media to respond to Ole Miss fans, blogs, etc. But when they start crossing over into MSU fans (or if MSU admin and media did the same to OM fans) it’s just weird, creepy and pathetic.
What am I talking about?
Coach 34 wrote a post on EliteDawgs about the Ole Miss recruiting playbook. That created plenty of red and blue angst as only C34 can do. It spawned the twitter hashtag #TheNetwork as Ole Miss fans tried to make fun of it (keep in mind this was from a MSU message board where OM fans are not allowed to post – but they read so frequently they decided to get a hashtag going).
That’s cool though. Just some ribbing between fanbases. But then the Ole Miss athletic director chimes in?
Rivals recruiting writer Neal McCready, who covers Ole Miss for RebelGrove.com went on the Bo Bounds radio show in Jackson to discuss “The Network” on Tuesday morning. Seriously – they discussed a message board post. Then, on Wednesday morning Coach 34 goes on the Bo Bounds show, and McCready gets upset.
But that’s not all from McCready – he’s been on a roll this week. He started his Rebel Grove podcast (can be heard on Rebel Sports Radio) with five minutes of bashing an independent MSU fan podcast. Now, not only is he a paid professional doing a podcast making fun of amateurs, but the amateur he is making fun of is 14 years old. A grown man laying down the put downs on a 14 year old boy. Real cool.
Is it safe to say Ole Miss is all in on this rivalry? They are selling tickets for tonight’s MSU/OM basketball game for $31.17. It’s nice y’all are finally acknowledging your hate, even though we knew it was there all along. But please, don’t cross the line as a paid professional to get into it with fans. Hugh Freeze has done it multiple times – it’s weak and pathetic. And I would rather have a rival with a little more decency than this.