Alabama and Auburn are definitely in a new “uncomfortable zone” as they are not accustomed to taking a back seat to Ole Miss and State in college football. Welcome to 2014! For those of us who follow recruiting twelve months a year, we saw this coming some time ago.
You can also include LSU in this package as they are also in a downward spiral. Arkansas and Texas A&M are caught in the middle of this tsunami at least for the moment.
With State claiming No. 1 in at least one poll, my hat is off to them. However, if Ole Miss was in a reverse position with them, I would be concerned. It’s clear now to even the Monday morning quarterbacks that the two best defenses in the league are Ole Miss and Alabama. State is third best. Along with this, State must still travel to Tuscaloosa and Oxford whereas Ole Miss has Auburn and State at home. State must also travel to Lexington, not the typical walk
through the park as it has been in recent years.
The rumor market in Florida has Dan Mullen heading to Gatorland following the season. When I heard this recently, it reminded me of 1969, the last year I was a permanent resident in Oxford. History often repeats itself. Here’s what happened that season. Late in the year Ole Miss had a key matchup with Tennessee. The Vols were a 17 point favorite and headed to the Orange Bowl. Ole Miss was headed somewhere, but definitely not looking at a major bowl.
Enter 2014. Tennessee comes to Oxford an 18.5 point underdog with Ole Miss number 3 in the country as Tennessee was in 1969. After Ole Miss defeated the Vols 38-0 in 69, the Sugar Bowl came calling and Tennessee had to settle for the Gator Bowl. To add insult to injury, the Vols also lost their coach as Doug Dickey accepted the Florida head coaching
job following the season.
I anticipate similar activities occurring this season with Ole Miss possibly once again heading to the Sugar Bowl. And if there is a coaching change at Florida, Mullen would be as likely a candidate around. The next few weeks will make things crystal clear, but as of now, the speculation is running wild!
Steve Vassallo is a HottyToddy.com contributor. Steve writes on Ole Miss athletics, Oxford business, politics and other subjects. He is an Ole Miss grad and former radio announcer for the basketball team. In addition, he is a certified economic and community developer and currently, a highly successful leader in the real estate business with Premier Properties of Oxford. Steve’s lifelong dream has been to live in Oxford full-time. “I am now living my dream daily as is my wife Rosie, who works with the Oxford Chamber of Commerce,” Steve said. You can contact Steve at email@example.com or call him at 985-852-7745.
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