I sure hope so, though I kind of think that last year was a product two elements: His athleticism and teams not expecting and being as prepared for him. With so much game fill for opposing DCs to hone in on this offseason, a number of teams may have packages now in place to hinder some of that productions that was captured last season. Of course, knowing our luck, he may very well get injured against Baylor and be out the rest of the season...
Yeah, the series has been the bane of many of us OM fan's existence. For me, it has been a thorn in my side going back to the 2001 Eli Manning led season where we entered the game 6-1 (lone loss being a 21-27 loss to AU) to play a 4-3 Arky team where we lost 56-58, 7OT. I don't know what it is, but that game ALWAYS has me on edge, no matter the season, seeing how it is so close, more often than not.
None taken. Yeah they're bad, lack depth and have a coaching change to work through this season with limited time to get acclimated this offseason. Not expecting TOO much out of them when you take that in to account, paired with a relatively tough schedule (think the ceiling could be 6 wins at the most, floor? I don't even want to think about it). However, this is the same bad team that played a much more talented AU team to the wire last season with a coach in Luke who often times caused the fans to be dumbfounded with his play calls and how he mismanaged the small amount of talent he had at his disposal. Sure, having to settle for FG's is indeed what kept the game close, but at the same time it was that same bad Ole Miss team that were the ones who forced AU to settle for FGs. With a new, innovative, offensive minded coach in Kiffen that has often got the best out of the offensive weapons that he has at his disposal, I wouldn't be totally shocked if he found a way to win a game that he shouldn't, even if it isnt AU. I wasn't trying to say that I do agree and think they beat AU, just that I've learned never to put too much stock in the result of the OM/Arky game, involving Morris or not.
"The soft high school schedule will help" Baylor @NRG, Auburn, @LSU, Bama, and Florida in the 1st seven weeks is a "soft high school schedule"? "but I still only 4 wins this year." I may be wrong, but I am assuming you have wins agains SW MO St., UConn, and GA Southern for at least 3 wins. Arkansas and Vandy are on the schedule as two winnable games Ole Miss should be favored in where they could pick up a win or two. That leaves 7 other games on the schedule (Baylor, Auburn, LSU, Alabama, Florida, TAMU, and MSU) where it wouldn't be totally out of the realm of possibility if they picked up a win. Saying that the schedule is weak and that only 4 games are winnable does nothing but let your bias show. I would say a more accurate prediction would be that they win 5-6 games while playing a decent schedule.
"Arkansas Morris almost beat Ole Miss in 2018 and played them well in 2019." It's kind of hard to use the Arkansas-Ole Miss game as a barometer of any measure as it is often tightly contested with the average MOV being 8 points over the past 12 seasons. Sure, Morris and Arky did indeed play well in their week 2 2019 match up but it was early in the season. I feel as if this plays into the idea that the article seems to focus on with stronger teams being more susceptible to upsets earlier in the season. I would argue that Ole Miss played better down the stretch after finding their identity a bit more, playing competitive games against A&M and at Auburn while it seemed as if Arkansas remained stagnate (save for a close A&M game), getting thumped by a WKy team at home late in the year. I mean even in 2014 when Arkansas finished 7-6 (2-6) and Ole Miss was at 9-4 (5-3), Ole Miss was thumped 30-zip. Then the following season when Ole Miss went 10-3 (6-2) beating the likes of #2 Alabama, #15 A&M, #15 LSU, #21 State, and #16 Okie Lite, they lost at home to unranked Arkansas. Clearly Arkansas gets up for that game yearly, regardless of what kind of season they're having.
I don't know how you figure Mississippi State will beat up on Ole Miss next year. Ole Miss is losing a lot of talent but isn't Mississippi State doing the same? While Ole Miss is losing 10 starters, Mississippi state is losing 9. Treadwell, Nkemdiche, and Tunsil are gone along with others. However, it's not exactly as if the cupboard is totally bare. Kelly, who may be the SEC's best QB, returns and has a slew of reliable options to pass to with returning TE Evan Engram, Adeboyejo, Markell Pack, DeMarkus Lodge (#6 WR in 2015 class), and Stringfellow (#9 WR in 2013 class). Little, the #1 rated OT, comes in to take over for Tunsil. Pretty much the entire defensive back field returns, both defensive ends return, and 4-star sophomore Breeland Speaks takes over for Nkemdiche. In a day and age where 5-7 teams get into bowl games, for you to say Ole Miss with their returning talent and quality replacements for talent lost at other positions will struggle to make a bowl game is a bit silly. I'm also assuming that with the clever little Tun$$$il and Moneywell nicknames you are hinting that Ole Miss is buying players. It happens all over the place in every conference and if someone honestly tells themselves that it doesn't then they're either misguided or naive. All the same, I think it's funny that people think that Ole Miss has deeper pockets than schools like Texas, USC, Oregon, FSU, Oklahoma, Ohio State, Okie State, etc. with these school's known big money boosters and large endowments. Mississippi is the poorest state in the country. I doubt that either Ole Miss or Mississippi State are "outbidding" schools such as the ones i've listed above. Hell, Mississippi State couldn't even afford the $100,000-$180,000 for Cam Newton.
"If they should have beaten Arkansas, why was Arkansas in a position to win?" Really? Upsets are a part of college football. There are plenty of instances where "TEAM A" "should" have beaten "TEAM B" but "TEAM B" puts themselves in position to win the game. You could look at 2013 LSU who was 6-1 and ranked #6 nationally and say that they should have beaten Ole Miss who was 3-3, unranked and did not have the same level of talent on their roster that LSU did. However, Ole Miss pulled the upset. They likely didn't mention the UF loss because it was a straight beat down. However, even with that first loss had they not had the "clunker" against Memphis and had the highly improbable 4th and 25 converted, they would've found themselves with one loss in Atlanta playing for a SEC title and playoff birth. As far as whether Ole Miss is "championship caliber", both Saban at LSU and Freeze at Ole Miss have similarities in their 1st four years. Both had two top 20 finished in the first 4 years, Both went to two BCS/NY6 bowl games in their first 4 years, Both had 2 top 10 recruiting classes (assuming Ole Miss finishes in the top 10 this NSD) in their first 4 years. They each had similar records with Saban at 39-16 and Freeze with 34-18. Saban took over an LSU team that had not won a nat'l title in 45 years while Freeze took over an Ole Miss team that hasn't won a nat'l title in 50 years. Saban was able to put in the work and get LSU back to "championship caliber". It's hard too look at what Freeze is doing and dismiss it and call the them pretenders.
I guess you can tell how classy a MSU fan is by the number of cowbells displayed in their living room?
"LSU/Bama/Ole Miss/MSU all in a pod" ...bless these little bulldog's hearts. they just want to be included.
^ The lady doth protest too much, methinks Yeah, LSU didn't run you out of the house. However, when LSU played Aubie they gave them a straight beat down. If a team has to play "ultra conservative" against this years Auburn team to "preserve the win", then that team likely is not THAT amazing.
Just because a bowl game is played in January, doesn't mean it's a good bowl game or a marquee match up. Take for instance the Birmingham Bowl/Compass Bowl. You mention teams that make these January games are either hot all season or has played well in December. Florida entered the 2015 Birmingham bowl with a record of 6-5 while losing 2 out of 4 of their last regular season games.
I donno, I feel that if he had an agenda to try to show equal attention to both the east and west, he may have stated so in his introduction to the list. There was none of that. He just says it's a list of the best conference games (SEC as a whole) by date. His assessment that the best game available on October 24th as being Kentucky v. Mississippi State is a complete joke and pretty much takes his credibility away when you have other games on the slate such as Tennessee-Alabama, Ole Miss-Texas AM, and Auburn-Arkansas.
It's a little odd that Ole Miss was left off the list completely. Here are a few weeks where I could possibly see swapping out this guys choice for game of the week for an Ole Miss game. OCTOBER 24th HIS CHOICE: Kentucky @ Mississippi State REPLACEMENT: Texas AM @ Ole Miss -He really expects UK/MSU to have more "entertainment value"? According to MasseyRatings, UK has but an 18% chance to win while MSU is expected to win by 2 touchdowns, doesn't seem to entertaining. Ole Miss-TAMU is currently a 4 point spread game. Hell, while you say that Auburn's match up isn't too exciting, I think id rather watch Auburn/Arkansas over UK/MSU. When looking for entertaining games, I'm looking for games that may shape the SEC title hunt, not games that could put one team in the SEC West cellar while making the other team bowl eligible for a bottom tier bowl game. OCTOBER 31st HIS CHOICE: Florida v. Georgia REPLACEMENT: Ole Miss @ Auburn -Sure UF/UGA have the rivalry and history but this isn't the same UF team of the past. Sure they won last year, but for this guy just to bank on the Gators winning this year is a bit silly. Currently the UF/UGA game is at Vegas at a 12 point spread with the Ole Miss-Auburn. Apparently the people who make their living off of these games seem to think Ole Miss @ Auburn will have more "entertainment value". NOVEMBER 21st HIS CHOICE: Tennessee @ Missouri REPLACEMENT: LSU @ Ole Miss -He gives his choice of Tennessee @ Mizzou 3.5 out of 5 when it comes to "entertainment value". He also references plenty of games from the previous year as he did with the UF/UGA match up. Both LSU and Ole Miss return key starters on both sides of the ball from what was a down to the wire finish last year. Vegas currently has the LSU-Ole Miss game as a Pick Em with no spread. If this game resembles last years game are we really to believe that it gets less than a 3.5 "entertainment value" rating? I'm not sure how this fella is calculating this "entertainment value" rating, but it seems flawed a bit.
Go look at what he wrote last week under "BOTTOM LINE". The writer did not change his "BOTTOM LINE" on Ole Miss from last week to this week, not sure why. He was talking about Texas AM being a tough road game for us and not the Tennessee game. https://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/sec-football/sds-playoff-predictor-week-6/