Agreed, Tusk. I was at the LSU/MSU game last year, right over the Visiting team entrance wearing a gray cap, and I watched LSU "fans" leave in droves. My brother-in-law and I got to watch an inspiring performance by freshman Brandon Harris and a revived LSU defense stage an epic comeback, falling just short of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat on a hail mary as time ran out. LSU went on to have a mediocre season after that, but I was thrilled at that glimpse of the future, and it was fun to hear the MSU faithful who had been raucous the whole game fall into deathly silence as they and Coach Mullen visibly held their breath to see if they would hang on to win. These are the moments reserved for the real fans, and even in a loss, I'm proud I was there to see it first hand.
Well-written, accurate, and still respectful. Though I'm ashamed to admit it as an LSU football fan, I appreciate the candor. Here's hoping this article finds its way to the coaching staff. Thanks, Chris! Also- Jarrett Lee was, as another comment pointed out, a bright star in his final season, but thanks to the dedication to JJ, he ends up a pleasant footnote, just further proving your point.
Please understand that i don't disagree with your point at all. I can see LSU vs. A&M becoming that marquee rivalry, and I agree that The Boot is as close to "official" as LSU has right now (heck, assigning a bowl trophy to the Ole Miss rivalry didn't become official until just before I graduated college, regardless of the long history). I just wanted to point out that the rivalry really does exist and has history going back much further than the name.
"Still, it’s the Tigers’ only trophy, or “name” game on the slate every year..." You sure about that? You might want to look up "Magnolia Bowl." I'm not saying it has the notoriety of a couple of those others, but the phrases "Geaux to hell, Ole Miss" and "Go to hell, LSU" are used regularly by fans of both teams for generations. They each host the most reknowned tailgates in the West Division, and tend to save the best for each other. I admit that A&M is going to make a great rivalry, but I don't see how you can understate the history of the one with Ole Miss. Of course, the A&M rivalry is really a rekindling of a historical cross-conference rivalry. Now that the Aggies don't care as much about the Longhorns, it has the potential to be greater than it ever was. I think the history only helps.
I noticed that, too. Unfortunately, we don't have a good enough angle to tell if it was "thrown" or "dropped," but by the QB's reaction and the way it kind of wobbled on the ground, it could have been dropped, or it could have been thrown down on its oblong side instead of its point. I've watched Jennings throw the ball many times and can honestly say he's bad enough throwing the ball, that he could have just thrown it towards the ground on its side rather than pointed end first. The thing is, if there's a possibility it could be either, and you don't have the angle to determine for certain, you kinda have to go with the ref's determination, and since he blew the whistle immediately after, he was apparently satisfied.
I rewatched it several times. I saw an extra Florida defender jump on the pile after the play was whistled dead right in front of one of the refs approaching the pile (that probably contributed to the action), as well as another Florida defender shove off LSU players trying to pull people off the pile. I also saw there were only 2 LSU players in the pile, and they were on the very bottom on top of the ball. I agree with others here that had a flag been thrown, which it could have according to NCAA football rules, it could have resulted in a 15-yard penalty against the defense, so count your blessings. The most important thing you appear to be missing, though, is how pointless the argument is, anyway. From the rule book: "Minimum Time For A Play After Spiking The Ball ARTICLE 5. a. If the game clock is stopped and will start on the referee’s signal with three or more seconds remaining in the quarter, the offense may reasonably expect to throw the ball directly to the ground (Rule 7-3-2-e) and have enough time for another play. b. With two seconds or one second on the game clock there is enough time for only one play. (A.R. 3-3-5-I)" Bottom line: 3 seconds on the clock once that ref takes his hand off the ball. Same play follows, same result ends the game. Nobody needed 10 seconds.