Actual football games are just a month away. That leaves us with only 30 days or so to anxiously pass the time. Unfortunately, our idle time isn’t always spent productively.

Here are a few suggestions of what not to do while preparing for the start of the 2016 season.

1. Don’t go on a Twitter rant

Remember that time your Twitter rant changed the political opinions of all those people online? Of course you don’t remember because — just like an Ole Miss appearance in the SEC Championship Game — it’s never happened in the history of the world.

Twitter rants oftentimes have the opposite effect of their intentions, while all too frequently exposing us to the author’s painful grammar skills.

You know your rant completely missed its mark when you’re forced to apologize for it. Texas A&M wide receivers coach Aaron Moorehead learned that lesson the hard way in May after a rant aimed at teaching high school players about accountability led to the de-commitment of five-star quarterback Tate Martell.

Do this handy exercise the next time you’re considering a Twitter rant. Type it out, check for grammar mistakes, then send it straight to your desktop’s recycle bin.

2. Don’t lose consciousness

Will Muschamp’s ill temper is the stuff of legend. The first-year South Carolina head coach confirmed this summer that he broke a finger punching a locker room wall last season while firing up his Auburn defense during a halftime screed. It was more of a shrug off than a confirmation. Muschamp thinks of it as a casual injury, you know, just another part of game day. That is, if the Gamecocks’ new coach can remember game day.

“I get frustrated sometimes,” Muschamp told reporters at SEC Media Days. “I wear my emotions sometimes on my sleeves a little bit more than I should, so I don’t remember the situation. I black out sometimes.”

The lesson imparted here is to quell your anger.

3. Don’t get in a pissing contest with a skunk

That’s solid advice during the season as well. It’s also the adage that Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops pointed in the direction of his Arkansas counterpart Bret Bielema at this summer’s SEC Media Days. Stoops’ lighthearted advice came in response to a comment made by the jovial Bielema, who referenced Stoops’ brothers Bob and Mike of Oklahoma, proclaiming “You piss one of the Stoops off, you piss all of them off.”

4. Don’t pass the time with a Laremy Tunsil gas mask

Don’t use a Laremy Tunsil-style gas mask to smoke marijuana, not just because it’s illegal in most parts, but because it’s dangerous. The former Ole Miss left tackle vaulted into draft-day infamy when a photo of him smoking ganja out of a gas mask rigged to a bong leaked moments prior to April’s NFL Draft. The fallout witnessed the prospective No. 1 pick plummet to the Miami Dolphins at No. 13. We implore you not to try this at home … or anywhere for that matter.

5. Don’t design a wrestling-style belt dedicated to Alabama

Don’t do it because you’ve already been beaten to the punch by Shannon Villa. It makes sense that a self-professed super fan owns a homemade Alabama wrestling belt and a Crimson Tide championship ring hat. Villa, 26, made his fourth consecutive trip to the annual SEC Media Days this summer, where his garments and super fandom surely caught the eyes of those in attendance at the Hoover, Ala., event.

“Back in the day, I didn’t even care about football,” Villa said via the Anniston Star. “I was just playing video games and enjoying my life going outside and stuff like that. I love Nintendo.”

Going outside or playing video games are great ways to pass the time prior to the start of the season.

6. Don’t mix football with politics

Is Donald Trump bringing former Florida quarterback Tim Tebow in to speak on the presidential hopeful’s campaign trail? Does Lou Holtz’s opinion on immigration hold any news value? It’s rare to win a political argument, and vitriol always runs higher during an election cycle. But do us all a favor and leave football divorced from politics.

8. Don’t get a giant tattoo of an SEC coach

Not unless you’re comfortable with receiving odd looks and the repeated question of “why, again, did you tattoo an enormous photo of Steve Spurrier on your leg?” from your family members. Sanger, Ca., resident and Gator fan Richard Ward recently shared his fresh ink depicting the Head Ball Coach being carried off the field by his ex-Gators players.

8. Don’t pull pranks on people

Let’s rephrase that. Don’t pull dumb pranks on people. An example of a good prank comes at the expense of Ole Miss alum Laquon Treadwell, who received a car-full of pre-packaged fruit snacks courtesy of the rookie wide receiver’s new Minnesota Vikings teammates. A poor prank to pull — depending on who you ask — was provided recently by Todd Harris. The four-star Class of 2017 recruit invited representatives from Alabama, LSU and Ole Miss to his hometown of Plaquemine, La., to hear his commitment, only to have the safety declare his intention of remaining with his Green Devil teammates. The moral? Don’t pull pranks that interfere with people’s jobs.

9. Don’t drive around campus with drugs in your car

Seems to be a rather obvious one, but then again, not everyone resides within the walls of common sense. Case in point, former Texas A&M defensive tackle Thomas Mark Anthony Wheeler, who was recently incarcerated in College Station for sitting in a parked car at 1 a.m. allegedly smoking a joint and possessing marijuana and cocaine. Not the best life choice. Don’t be like Wheeler.

10. Don’t marry a fan of a rival school

True love is hard to find. And the heart wants what it wants. But if you marry a fan of a rival school, you best be prepared to receive a face full of your rivals’ team colors on the day of your nuptials. Such was the case with Alabama fan Rob Sabin. “Roll Tide Rob’s” fiancé surprised him with a wedding cake depicting Alabama head coach Nick Saban riding an elephant. The catch? His wife Amanda Perryman, a Gator diehard supporter, had the inside crafted with blue and orange cake.


Instead of telling you what not to do to prepare for the season, might we suggest a wholesome activity in the run-up to the season’s kickoff? How about singing to sick children in the hospital? Let Nick Saban and his Alabama players show you how it’s done.