Indulge me a little bit of personal exposition, and I promise your patience will be rewarded with GIFs.
There are a few things about me that people know: I like Auburn and dogs. I prefer my martinis dirty and my hotdogs with ketchup. I think wordplay is the height of comedy. I love a murder book, and I don’t hate LSU.
It’s probably because I’ve never had a truly bad experience in Red Stick, but as I’ve written in this space practically every September or October since we cranked this thing up 6 season ago, the joy of beating LSU comes not from seeing their fans miserable but from the sense of accomplishment that usually accompanies a win. Even down-and-out LSU teams typically give Auburn their best shot, because this game almost always means something to both sides.
But a thing about me that people might not know is my most personal and important reason for not hating the Bayou Bengals is that my best friend loves them. I won’t wax poetic about her because she doesn’t like reading nice things about herself (especially when I don’t warn her beforehand), but she believes in and loves LSU like I believe in and love Auburn, unapologetically and with her whole heart. And I’ll be damned if I’m ever going to enjoy being the cause of her unhappiness, or her mine.
So basically what I’m saying is that the two of us pretend this week’s game isn’t a thing every year, and I will be Undercover Barning accordingly. We’ll both watch the game separately and cheer on our teams like usual, but after it’s over, it’ll be as if nothing ever happened. It’s not that I don’t love Auburn, it’s that I love her more than this one particular rivalry.
So instead, let’s talk about other games that actually ARE happening this week! I may be mum about Auburn, but I have plenty of opinions to spare about everyone else. Let’s see what we’ve got coming up on the Week 7 SEC Docket:
BYU at Mississippi State
Meh. I want State to be better than they are. I’mma ride that train until Dan forces me off with his incompetence*.
South Carolina at Tennessee
South Carolina’s quarterback went to Opelika High School, so I’m duty-bound to support him. Also Tennessee is stupid, like just as a concept**.
Vanderbilt at Ole Miss
Great Whites are the best sharks. Blue sharks are the worst sharks. Landsharks are the lamest sharks. Nerds by a field goal.
Texas A&M at Florida
Jorts or paramilitary uniforms? Literally the only likable thing about this game is Kevin Sumlin. Here’s to you, coach.
Missouri at Georgia
Arkansas at Alabama
You know how we know Alabama is the ultimate super-villain? BERT is a sympathetic character in this narrative. But like not that sympathetic.
Other than flying eagles, marching band renditions of rap songs, and Ric Smith’s booming voice announcing an Auburn touchdown, probably my favorite part of football season is standing in my own glass house and throwing stones at every other team in the country. What else is twitter for anyway?
In all seriousness, it was good to see Auburn come out swinging after an early kickoff against Ole Miss this past weekend. I know a lot of people were disappointed in the second half, but going into a gauntlet like Auburn will be facing in the next few weeks, can you really blame Chip/Gus(?)*** for pumping the brakes and bleeding the clock? Draws aren’t sexy, but they sure do eat away at quarters. The second string defense looked porous against Ole Miss’ firsts, but how else do we protect our starters and get the seconds (and thirds!) valuable in-game minutes against SEC competition? The final score wasn’t as pretty as we wanted, but that game was never really in doubt after the first drive, and I’ll take a comfortable conference win every time.
If you’re heading to Baton Rouge this weekend for the thing that isn’t happening, don’t automatically assume that the Marriott off the interstate will keep your reservation if you arrive late even if you call twice about a late check-in. Also don’t assume they’ll be sorry about it****.
You’ll still have fun, though. Ever to conquer, never to yield.
Until next time—War Eagle!
*I assume they’ll manage to lose to Ole Miss.
** “...And Tennessee too!”
*** Idk who’s calling the plays but I guess we don’t super care anymore since the offense works again :)
**** They’ll say they have no record of your calls, give you a cot, and then try to charge you extra for it. Basically what I’m saying is spend your dollhairs with Hilton.