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Undercover Barner: Gettin’ Bye

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This week’s Undercover Barner was basically mailed in from the couch.

NCAA Football: Auburn at Mississippi State Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

While Auburn manage to move up in the polls without lifting a finger, I spent the bye week where God intended: on someone else’s couch surrounded by snackfoods. It was glorious, and I regret nothing.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s little more exciting to me than an Auburn gameday. I love getting dressed up and making the hike to the Jordan-Hare. Or getting dressed up and yelling at my television. But when the blessed week rolls around where you can watch everyone else’s games in the comfort of your living room with no pressure, I savor it.

Saturday began as any normal Saturday would: with an early alarm because football. Duh.

But I didn’t care, because it was bye week!

I’d truly planned to watch as much football as possible because I was house-sitting and had planned to be planless*. But instead I decided to go shopping with my mommy and managed not to watch a single down of football until the fourth quarter of the Vanderbilt-Georgia game.

Though I did yell, “THAT’S SHORT,” out loud to literally no one, I can’t really make fun of Georgia for that game (yet) since we still have to play Vanderbilt, and Vanderbilt is sitting on a damn winning streak** against us. But it’s always nice to see Georgia lose.

I think I watched about 15 collective minutes of the Alabama-Tennessee game. Tbh Tennessee never had a prayer in this game, and I was never sold on them as the conference darkhorse. In fact, a couple of weeks ago, in an attempt at a casual, normal conversation, a well-meaning friend relayed a article he’d read that compared 2016 Tennessee to 2010 Auburn. In an attempt at a casual, normal reaction, I had what can only be described as a “hissy fit.”

I’m not exaggerating. But seriously, that’s insane. And after Saturday, at least I felt a little more justified in my overreaction, so thanks, Butch.

But I digress. I spent the other 85% of the Alabama-Tennessee game reading*** and watching UNC-Miami and Missouri-Florida. Literally anything is better than watching Alabama choke the life out of an opponent and watching Lane Kiffin succeed by proxy so good job at football or whatever.

Ergo, I watched meaningless ACC and SEC East games instead. However, I care so little about either of those groups that I have not a single opinion to share. Just kidding. I desperately want Gene Chizik to succeed as a defensive coordinator because I believe that’s where his gifts lie. From all appearances, he seems like a genuinely nice person and I want good things for him. So go ‘Heels? Right? Idk what they say but I mean it.

By LSU-kickoff, I was joined by my Bengal Tiger best friend. They took on Southern Miss, who held their own for a while, much to our dismay. First half had us like

But then Da Coach O delivered what I can only imagine was the most inspirational halftime speech of our generation (rinse and repeat weekly), and LSU came out on fire after the second half kickoff, scoring 25 unanswered points to seal the game.

All’s well that ends well.

I caught a few frames of the Ole Miss-Arkansas game, which was honestly the most relevant game of the weekend for Auburn fans. I’m not totally comfortable living in a world where BERT coaches a competent football team, so I refuse to believe that’s a thing. I’m glad we’ll be taking the Hogs at home under the lights, because they make me nervous. Hypothetically. Because I still don’t believe they’re a thing.

I have no idea how Saturday’s game will go, but I do know that this team has been improving since Week 1’s manic five-quarterback meltdown. The offense looks like it has some sense of purpose now and the defense has done nothing but get nastier. If Auburn doesn’t pull it off, I think subpar offensive line play will be the culprit. But they’ve steadily gotten better as the season has worn on, and at least we’re the underdog! Auburn always plays best when it’s trying to prove itself. Feelin’ good, you guys.

Wait, we’re favored in this game?

Nerds! Welcome back to our lives, superstition. Stupid Hawg Hex. At least the game isn’t at 11 a.m..

If you’re making the trip to the Plains to see the Tigers take on BERT’S Fighting Warthogs****, be loud. While our defense is on that field, our only job as fans is to disrupt Arkansas’ offense. Lose your voice and your dignity, temporarily. You owe it to your Tigers.

Until next time—War Eagle.

*This is one of my favorite things to do. Welcome to adulthood.

**Vanderbilt actually leads the all-time series 21-20-1, a fact I learned on Saturday via Google and was not pleased.

***My time travel Hitler book. Highly recommend it.

****BERT, too, can clear a savannah after every meal.