I graduated from Auburn University, and I love Auburn more than I love most people. But like all Auburn people, I’ve been sorely disappointed with the way this season has unfolded. It’s produced in me a “laugh so you don’t cry” sort of feeling.
To preview this Tigers / Landsharks matchup in the most lively way possible, I sat down (via the world wide web) earlier this week with one of my three favorite Ole Miss alums, Alex McDaniel. Here’s the gist of our conversation.
Jess: Ole Miss is 5-2 on the year; what would you say to Auburn fans who point out the *abysmal* combined records (10-23) of the teams Ole Miss has beaten?
Alex: I would say we can all sit around making judgments based on “numbers” and “facts,” but I reject that in favor of drinking under chandeliers.
Jess: Earlier this week I tweeted out my disappointment in Auburn’s season, stating that I felt like I had sat down to drink a Dr. Pepper but instead drank my cousin’s dip spit. How would you describe the year Ole Miss is having?
Alex: It’s like being grounded for bullshit reasons and sneaking your Xbox to your bedroom when your dad isn’t looking. You still aren’t allowed to go to the big Homecoming dance, but who just kicked Tom Brady’s ass in Madden ‘18?
You did, baby.
Your dad can’t vacate your bragging rights.
Jess: Auburn’s defense has given up just three rushing touchdowns all season. No one in the SEC has scored more rushing touchdowns (9) than Ole Miss running back Scottie Phillips. What’s gonna give in this matchup?
Alex: Seeing as how Scottie Phillips is the sitting chancellor of the University of Mississippi, I am not at liberty to discuss his personal affairs.
Jess: Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham has been sacked 15 times this year. In your opinion, which is more dependable and why — Auburn’s offensive line or McDonald’s ice cream machine?
Alex: The thing about McDonald’s ice cream machine is while it will almost always be broken whenever you’re in the mood for a McFlurry, every now and then you get the McFlurry and IT IS DELICIOUS. LOOK AT THIS MCFLURRY. HAVE YOU EVER EXPERIENCED SUCH JOY? What helps the ice cream machine in this case is going up against a defense that can’t stop anyone. Less-than-stellar ice cream machines can (and have) put up a lot of points in that situation.
(I don’t know what we’re talking about anymore.)
Jess: The Ole Miss defense, on average, gives up 35.1 points and 565 yards per game. Why do Ole Miss fans insist on the ‘Landshark’ nickname?
Alex: Keep in mind Ole Miss had a confederate gentleman as its mascot for most of the 20th century, despite the Confederacy getting its ass beat. I say that to say 1) Thank God my alma mater no longer has a racist symbol as its brand imagery and 2) My son thinks the Landshark is scary AF, so at least it’s intimidating SOMEONE, right?
Jess: Jordan Ta’amu (not Tua Tagovailoa) leads the SEC in passing yards, with 2,298 so far this year. If you were comparing Ta’amu to a fast food restaurant, which one would it be and why?
Alex: Jordan is a lot like Panera Bread. Some people might think “Why would I resort to a drive-thru for an expensive salad when I can just go to a nicer place and be SEEN ordering an expensive salad?” I’LL TELL YOU WHY: BECAUSE JUST WHEN YOU THINK SALAD AND BREAD BOWLS ARE ALL JORDAN HAS TO OFFER, HE HITS YOU WITH THAT PASTRY COUNTER (his run game) AND YOUR MIND IS BLOWN.
Are those BEAR CLAWS? AT A PANERA?
You bet your ass they are.
Jess: If anyone understands head coach drama, it’s Ole Miss fans. How would you advise Auburn fans to cope with their feelings toward Gus Malzahn?
Alex: I would say go back and watch every Ole Miss game from the 2011 season and subject yourself to that abject misery. Your problems won’t seem so bad.
Jess: Name three things that are more likely than Malzahn hiring Hugh Freeze as OC in 2019. I bet you can’t.
1) Auburn firing Malzahn because a $30 million buyout is only a lot of money to people who aren’t winners, by God.
2) Auburn hiring Freeze as head coach, which might seem a little bonkers, but let’s review the facts: A) He beat Alabama twice which Auburn fans are real into, B) His tweets get all sorts of engagement, and C) You get to re-experience the Tuberville effect a second time bc a bunch of Ole Miss fans won’t be happy about it. And if there’s anything I’m an expert in, it’s pissing off Ole Miss fans.
3) Aubie becoming besties with Tony the Landshark and sparking a lifelong, creepy-looking friendship.
Jess: Realistically, how do you see this game playing out? Give me a score prediction.
Auburn — 28
Ole Miss — Marshall Henderson Trolls Auburn Fans dot gif
(I KID, I KID. 31.)
In my heart I hope she’s wrong, but I don’t think she is.