Oct 30

Thursday Pickin’ Season VII, Week 10 (Halloween edition)

Quote of the Day:

“Tiger Stadium is where opponents’ dreams come to die.”     –Les Miles

It is the annual Halloween Thursday Pickin’ and all through the South, Terror takes center stage. Tear stained eyes were plentiful as Ole Miss’ greatest Fears were realized with the Death of it’s dreams of a perfect season in Tiger Stadium. Alabama and Auburn Dread the rise of suddenly formidable old rivals to the west, and it must seem to them as if the End Times are nigh, even as the approach of their annual internecine Bloodletting remains foremost in their minds. As for Mississippi State, as for me, well, it’s just a matter of, the ticket is bought, ride the ride; and yet the ride is a Thriller and history (and the upcoming schedule) foretells that Doom awaits. Meanwhile Georgia, lying low, hoping to remain unseen as widespread Pain and Panic are inflicted among it’s old brethren of the SEC, cannot hide from the Reckoning barreling their way at the conclusion of the regular season.


TB lost my POTW last week to fall to 4-5 on the year and I went 0-4-1 dropping my bonus picks record to 26-17. The MTGU once again was even steven on POTW’s, 11-11-1, now 114-105-8 on the year. We stumbled on bonus picks, going 13-31, now 249-226 for the season.  Folly Jon, Fish, BR,  Harmony, Jessie Lou and Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop won the week. All of them were all-in winners except Folly J who went 3-2. Nobody picked a Dog o’the Week. Song of the Week and List of the Week as chosen by Mac went to MD and Nelson.

Here are last week’s results, bonus picks only in parentheses, the top 11 won their POTW, Irv tied and everyone else lost:

  1. Folly Jon (3-2)      56
  2. Fish                      56
  3. JLou                     56
  4. BR                        56
  5. Harmony              56
  6. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop  56
  7. Nelson (2-3, lotw) 49
  8. MD (0-1, sotw)      49
  9. Flyin’ J (2-3)         44
  10. Smily J (1-3)         38
  11. Pitalo (0-4)            31
  12. Irvine Redd           30
  13. Mac (1-0)              26
  14. RJ (2-2)                20
  15. Tiny D (0-1)          14
  16. SDog (0-1)            14
  17. Kitchen P               10
  18. RSR                       10
  19. Face                      10
  20. TJ                           10
  21. BW Buzz (1-3-1)    8
  22. Sweet (1-4)            2
  23. TB  (0-4-1)             1

Season Standings:

  1. RSR                      481
  2. Kitchen P              428
  3. Folly J                   426
  4. Flyin’ J                  422
  5. TJ                          398
  6. Sweet                    380
  7. TB                          359
  8. MD                         351
  9. Tiny D                    349
  10. Nelson                   346
  11. Fish                       344
  12. Face                       338
  13. SDog                     338
  14. Harmony               328
  15. RJ                          320
  16. Irv                           314
  17. Pitalo                     309
  18. Mac                        301
  19. BW Buzz                300
  20. SmilyJ                    278
  21. JLou                       245
  22. Big Ed                    241
  23. BR                          217
  24. TDW                      178
  25. Krebs                     155
  26. Fig                          154
  27. TKH                         72
  28. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop  66

Here are my Picks of the Week and Here’s your HandyDandy Link to the Odds:

  • Florida State  -3′
  • Wisconsin  -11
  • Air Force  -2′
  • South Carolina  -7
  • Arizona  +6′

POTW  Georgia  -13

And here’s my Halloween Playlist:

  • Tear Stained Eye – Son Volt
  • Alpha Male and the Canine Mystery Blood – Tommy Womack
  • Dead Flowers – Rolling Stones
  • Panic – The Smiths

SOTW–Don’t Fear the Reaper – Blue Oyster Cult (see what I did there?)




Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/thursday-pickin-season-vii-week-10-halloween-edition/

Oct 29

Hello. My Name Is Mac and…

I hate the cowbell. It’s annoying as all shit and is a pretty dang redneck representation of the school. We couldn’t get Sally, married to her first cousin? I think that the Gameday at State was annoyingly loud. I would not lose sleep if it was dropped from our repertoire.

But saying all that, I can say this. That is the point. It’s supposed to be annoying. Loud. Disrupt the defenses. It’s a noisemaker. And it’s here to stay. Clanga!

On to more important matters. The College Football Playoff gurus have come out with their first ever Top 4 college football championship thingy. And Mississippi State is still #1. I cannot even put into words how surreal this entire season has felt so I won’t try. Just suffice it to say that most fans are still in shock at this point. The rest of the country is LIVID about the announcement though. The cries of SEC Bias are reverberating around all halls of collegiate football. I find all of these complaints to be completely without basis. By any measuring stick you want to use, the SEC has been the dominant conference over the last 12 years or so. Eclipsing National Championships. A dang near .600 winning percentage in BCS bowls. When compared to individual conferences, the race hasn’t even been close.

The SEC is the best conference around and the SEC West is the best college football sub conference going. Get over it. Take a big swig of water and just swallow it. You will feel better in the morning. Maybe.

Do I think the four teams announced in this weeks playoff contenders will hold out? Hell no. It is going to change up. I honestly can’t see Alabama not making the top four. They are coming on strong at the right time of the season. I hate them but I know them. They are gonna be there. Will Ms State hold on to the # 1 ranking til the end of the year? Honestly I don’t know. For the first time in my VERY long fandom, I feel like we can beat anyone. But the longtime State fan knows we can lose to anyone too. It is making for a very interesting season.

I will say this final thing to all the SEC haters. There is one way and one way only to shut us up. Bring it.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/hello-my-name-is-mac-and/

Oct 28

TB’s Kentucky Roadtrip to See the Bulldogs

Quote of the Day:

“I’ve been around a long time, and life still has a whole lot of surprises for me.”     Loretta Lynn

It’s 5:09 a.m., Saturday morning, and pitch black outside in Oxford, Mississippi. The car fires and XM powers up, on the same channel my wife left it on last night. Lisa Loeb, “Do You Sleep” is playing. As if I haven’t been thinking, “Have I lost my mind?” for the last twelve hours already. I immediately switch over to my station, XM 60, Americana, where the radio will (mostly) stay until it’s time for pre game shows because I’ve got the car to myself today.

I was listening to Bulldog Sports Radio while exercising Friday morning and as the hosts of the B&B show talked about the game, I tuned them out, entertaining a continuous looping inner monologue that went, “We are the number 1 team in the nation. This may never happen again in my lifetime. I really should be there to see us play as number 1. And I’ve always wanted to go to Kentucky for a game. Hell, it’s now or never.”  All this cycled through about 273 times.

And that’s why I’m driving to Lexington this morning.

I’m doing 80 in a 55 zone and I’m passed by another car and so I am now using him to good purpose as a blocker. I gotta make hay before the sun comes up. We pass a lazy pickup just before Holly Springs. My blocker is opening up holes and I take it as a good omen. “Pure Morning” by Placebo comes on Lithium and I feel good. Optimistic. My team, poor old whipped-down (to borrow a phrase), Mississippi State of all things, is Number 1. Anything is thusly possible. A cure for cancer must surely be only a matter of time. Peace in the Middle East? It’ll come. Fusion-powered, hyperspace-capable flying cars will definitely be available before my number is called for the final time.

That’s why I’m driving to Lexington today.

Crossing in to Tennessee I pass the National Bird Dog museum, ease up through Bolivar where I once got a speeding ticket with my infant daughter and Mother-in-Law in the car at one a.m., and on to Jackson and Interstate 40. I do not like waking up before dawn, but I absolutely relish the driving hours before sunup. Since I was a child, it’s always seemed like more of an adventure at that time. Inevitably, the sun must rise and there is consolation in it’s perfection as it inches upward behind the western Tennessee cotton fields.

There are worse reasons to drive to Kentucky today.

Hungry now, I see a sign for Loretta Lynn’s Ranch House. Why not, right? There’s an old tractor out front and a statue of a buffalo (of all things) and inside are lots of photos of Conway Twitty and Loretta, of course, and more. And you can buy an indian blanket featuring Loretta Lynn’s face because of course you can. There’s biscuits and they’re good, the bacon is burned, the ham is country and I’ll be dang–fried bologna on the buffet. It turns out this interstate exit is a designated scenic byway heading north toward Clarksville where I can connect east to Kentucky and I’m ahead of schedule so I go for it. Winding through the colorful Tennessee autumn, up to the steeple dominated town of Clarksville then over to Bowling Green and more back roads north to Lexington. I pass a horse and buggy outside a Shaker village, and eventually I begin to see the famous horse farms of Kentucky. The interstate would’ve gotten me there sooner, but I’m happy to milk this day for all it’s worth before turning my focus to the game, because we’re putting that top ranking on the line plenty soon enough.

In 1977 or thereabouts, I went with my Dad and some of his co-workers to my first Mississippi State football game in Auburn. I think we won, but I know if we did we later had to forfeit for some boosters giving a guy clothing discounts. I grope around for the memories of that day, but mostly I just conjure the sensations. I think about that day in 1980 when we Beat the Bear, and no–I wasn’t there. But I was in ’91, Jackie Sherrill’s first year when we beat LSU in Tiger Stadium and then took down Ole Miss in the first Egg Bowl back on campus in twenty years. I think about 98 when we beat Arkansas and then Ole Miss to win the SEC West. There was the great comeback against Auburn that I celebrated with Jack Cristil in the Grove. And, being a true Bulldog, I recall too the heartbreaks–The Stand, Tubberville’s two point conversion, the referee-assisted defeat to Tennessee in our one previous shot at glory, leaving Scott Field at the end of the first quarter, down 35-0 to Tulane during the Croom era.

You better believe those are reasons I’m driving by myself to Kentucky today.

I finally arrive, make some friends in Big Blue Nation and avoid making enemies. An old guy named Rodney tells me to stick with him, he may have a ticket for me. He does and he won’t accept a nickel for it. As I make my way into the stadium I exchange random fist bumps and nods of solidarity and understanding with fellow Maroons in a manner unlike anything I’ve ever seen either at home or on the road. My ticket entitles me to 12 inches of booty-room right inside the upper left corner of the Famous Maroon Band, and though they don’t really want me there, I squeeze in next to the trombone section. Or French Horns. I don’t know. Not the tubas. We’re in the corner of the end zone about twenty rows up. Glorious view. Dak doesn’t have a Heisman-caliber game but tailback Josh Robinson does. Between the third and fourth quarters Kentucky holds a little pep rally out on the field. A guy dressed in a Jared Lorenzen jersey leads the cheers and rallies the Wildcat crowd, exhorting them to cheer louder because they “are going to beat…..THE NUMBER ONE TEAM IN THE NATION!!!!”

But Robinson takes off on a scintillating 73 yard sprint/cutback touchdown run and Turtle Holmes ices it with a touchdown return of a Kentucky onside kick and the band plays the fight song over and over and the players salute the crowd and Dak jogs off the field last, after the interviews and for another mind bending week, MY Mississippi State Bulldogs will remain Number 1 in the Nation. I will forever treasure the fact I was there for it all.

And that, emphatically, is why I drove by myself, 22 hours over two and half days round trip, through the byways and backcountry of Mississippi, Tennessee and Kentucky, just to see the Bulldogs play.





Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/tbs-kentucky-roadtrip-to-see-the-bulldogs/

Oct 23

Thursday Pickin’ Season VII, Week 9

Quote of the Day:

“It’s faster horses, younger women, older whiskey and more money.”     – Tom T Hall

TB wants to talk to you this week about horses.


They are very big in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Not like freakishly-giant, but they have lots of races in Kentucky and people seem to make quite a big deal out of horses. That kind of big. I’ve always wanted to go to an MSU-Kentucky game and take in the races at Keeneland.

Speaking of which, it takes horses to win big games in the SEC.

And by the way, where does Kentucky get off with all this “Commonwealth” business? Do they think they are special or what? Commonwealth? Kentucky, you ain’t nuthin’ but a state. Not a particularly notable one either. Except when it comes to basketball and horses. But not the type it takes to win games against the top ranked team in college football. ‘Least I hope to God you don’t.

As for who’s got the horses in Thursday Pickin’, I am chagrined to report that RSR and Kitchen Princess are still lapping the field. They take Ole Miss every week. And every week Ole Miss covers the spread.

TB won the week, however, on the strength of a Pick of the Week that was not South Carolina and thus actually won and covered, along with a 4-1 bonus picks record. I’m now 4-4 for the season on POTW’s and 26-13 on bonus picks. The MTGU went 11-11 on POTW’s and 29-32 on bonus picks, moving our collective records to 103-94-7 and 236-195.  TJ hit the biggest DOTW with USM’s victory over North Texas. Song of the Week goes to Kitchen Princess and List of the Week to Mac. Of note, Mac lost his POTW and went 0-5 on bonus picks. No losers busted the curve to save Buzz and Fish from their dismal bonus picks.

Here are last week’s standings:

  1. TB  (4-1)                 68
  2. Kitchen P (SOTW)  61
  3. TJ (DOTW)             61
  4. RSR                        56
  5. Face                       56
  6. Sweet (3-2)             56
  7. Tiny D (2-1)             56
  8. RJ (2-2)                   50
  9. MD (1-1)                  50
  10. Fish (1-4)                 32
  11. BW Buzz (1-4)        32
  12. SDog (2-0)              26
  13. Folly J (3-2)             26
  14. Flyin’ J (3-2)            26
  15. Pitalo (3-2)              26
  16. Nelson (2-1)            26
  17. Big Ed (1-2)             14
  18. JLou                        10
  19. Irvine Redd              10
  20. BR                           10
  21. SmilyJ (1-3)              8
  22. Mac (0-5, LOTW)     6

Season Standings:

  1. RSR                         471
  2. Kitchen Princess      418
  3. TeaJay                     388
  4. Flyin’ J                      378
  5. Sweet                       378
  6. Folly J                      370
  7. TB                            358
  8. Tiny D                      335
  9. Face                        328
  10. SDog                        324
  11. MD                           302
  12. RJ                           300
  13. Nelson                     297
  14. BW Buzz                 292
  15. Fish                         288
  16. Irvine Redd              283
  17. Pitalo                       277
  18. Mac                          275
  19. Harmony                  272
  20. Big Ed                     241
  21. SmilyJ                      239
  22. JLou                        189
  23. TDW                        178
  24. BR                           161
  25. Krebs                       155
  26. Fig                            154
  27. TKH                           72
  28. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop 10

Here are my Picks of the Week and Here’s your HandyDandy Link to the Odds:

  • South Alabama  -14
  • Alabama  -17
  • Ole Miss  -3′
  • So. Miss +9′
  • Oklahoma St -1

POTW  Ohio State  -14

My Tunes:

  • Wild Horses – The Flying Burrito Brothers
  • Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses – U2
  • Bring on the Dancing Horses – Echo and the Bunnymen
  • Faster Horses – Tom T Hall

SOTW:  Laredo – Band of Horses


Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/thursday-pickin-season-vii-week-9/

Oct 16

Thursday Pickin’ Season VII, Week 8

Quote of the Week:

We’re Number 1!”        

I can’t believe you just said that.”

–text exchange between TB and Sweet last Saturday

I don’t know how we got here. I don’t know how long it will last. I don’t know where Imma gonna go when the volcano blow.

What I do know is We’re Number 1!

And when we finished off Aubie last week, old TB had to choke back a wave of tears I never could’ve imagined were stored up for such an occasion. And I wasn’t the only one by a longshot. And beyond that I don’t know what to say. It’s a wave and I’m ridin’ it for all I’ve got right now.


I even won my POTW last week while visiting the Grand Canyon and not watching the first half of the biggest regular season game State has ever played, which is a whole ‘nuther story that I may tell if I can scrounge up enough time to do a bit of writing this week–I’m slammed beyond belief right now and all I’ve got in me is nonsense and digressions, it seems, so let’s get the business taken care of, shall we?

I’m now 3-4 on POTW’s and I went 2-2-1 on bonus picks to move to 22-12-1 on the year. The MTGU went 14-9 on POTW’s and 27-23-1 on bonus picks, now 92-83-7 and 207-163 for the year. Pitalo won the week by hitting his POTW, of course, and going 4-1 on bonus picks. Sweet hit the biggest Dog o’the Week, Harmony gets Song of the Week and Mad Dawg scores for List of the Week. Shout out to RJ, TJ, TDW and SDog for hitting smaller underdog picks. RSR and Kitchen Princess, behind Ole Miss’ unblemished record both straight up and against the spread, continue to set the pace in the season standings.

Here are last week’s results:

  1. Pitalo (4-1)             68
  2. Sweet (3-2, dotw)  61
  3. Harmony (sotw)     61
  4. Flyin’ J (3-2)          56
  5. TDW (3-2)             56
  6. Big Ed (2-1)          56
  7. TJ                          56
  8. Face                      56
  9. Kitchen P               56
  10. Folly J                    56
  11. RSR                       56
  12. RJ (2-2)                 50
  13. TB (2-2-1)              50
  14. Nelson (1-1)           50
  15. BW Buzz (3-2)       26
  16. SDog (2-1)             26
  17. MD (0-1, Lotw)       19
  18. Tiny D (1-2)           14
  19. BR                         10
  20. JLou                       10
  21. Mac                        10
  22. SmilyJ                    10
  23. Fish (1-4)                2

Season Standings:

  1. RSR                      415
  2. Kitchen P              357
  3. Flyin’ J                   352
  4. Folly J                   344
  5. TeaJay                  327
  6. Sweet                   322
  7. SDog                    298
  8. TB                        290
  9. Tiny D                   279
  10. Irv                          273
  11. Face                    272
  12. Harmony             272
  13. Nelson                 271
  14. Mac                      269
  15. BW Buzz              260
  16. Fish                      256
  17. MD                       252
  18. Pitalo                   251
  19. RJ                        250
  20. SmilyJ                  231
  21. Big Ed                 227
  22. JLou                    179
  23. TDW                    178
  24. Krebs                   155
  25. Fig                       154
  26. BR                       151
  27. TKH                     72
  28. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop 10

Here are my Picks of the Week and Here’s your HandyDandy Link to the Odds:

  • Bama  -13.5
  • NC State  +17.5
  • Ole Miss  -16
  • Kentucky +10
  • Notre Dame +11.5

POTW Georgia  -3.5

Here are my Tunes:

  • 1 Bourbon 1 Scotch and 1 Beer – John Lee Hooker
  • 1 – U2
  • 1 of These Nights – Eagles
  • 1 – 3 Dog Night

SOTW: 1 Week – Barenaked Ladies

Bonus SOTW: Blue Eyes Cryin’ in the Rain – Willie

Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/thursday-pickin-season-vii-week-8/

Oct 15

I Am Not An Ebola Expert But…

Like with most things we argue about in this country, the talk about Ebola seems to have separated into two distinct trains of thought.

1. Freak completely out. The zombies are coming. Build a bunker and hide.
2. Stop freaking out you moron. Ebola is harmless as it’s impossible for you to catch it.

Let me start out by saying the truth (as I see it) lays somewhere in between these two ridiculous outliers. Is Ebola a terrifying disease? It sure is. Is it going to spread across the country like wildfire? No. But this has more to do with Ebola itself than our readiness to handle it. You basically have to swap bodily fluids with an infected individual to catch it. It is not airborne. And that is key.

If you really want to freak out, worry about something as nasty as Ebola but one that is airborne. That bad boy will spread across this country like a wildfire moving up a mountain with a 40mph wind behind it. The main goal of many biological terrorists is to create such an ease of transmission in their nasty bugs. One mason jar of military grade powder dropped on a subway track in New York would be enough to start the fuse on the powder keg.

Which brings me to the most egregious lie being propagated about this disease. That this country is prepared to keep it at bay because of our highly advanced medical system. Horseshit. We will keep Ebola at bay, sure. But not because we are bulletproof. I have been an EMT for 18 years so I know a little bit about our “readiness” or lack thereof. A second nurse who treated the Ebola victim in Texas now has the disease. Does that sound like a good Ebola control program to you? Trust me, the hospital in Texas is not a one off example either. I know for a fact that almost any hospital in this country would have had the same outcome if an Ebola victim had landed in their laps. If EMT’s respond to a man showing fever and other symptoms anywhere in this country, I can assure you their first thought is not going to be Ebola. They won’t be wearing masks or eye protection. They will be hip deep into their patient evaluation before any warning bells go off. We saw this in Texas. That guy told them in the emergency room that he had just come back from Liberia for Christ’s sake. AND THEY LET HIM WALK.

So what should you think about Ebola? I am not here to make that decision for you. It’s ok to be concerned though in my opinion. As with all things, educate yourself about the disease. I am not freaking out but I cannot fathom for the life of me why we have not shut down flights from infected countries. I think the aforementioned hubris has something to do with that decision.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/i-am-not-an-ebola-expert-but/

Oct 09

Thursday Pickin’ Season VII, Week 7

Quote of the Day:

Want to know what a revolution sounds like? Between the third and fourth quarter, Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ blares through the stadium speakers. The throng rings cowbells to the beat, creating a deafening roar as they try to hold on to the feeling.”     Pete Thamel, Sports Illustrated

I don’t even know where to start. State ranked number 3 in the country (along with Ole Miss), a matchup with the number 2 team coming up, a Heisman contender–make that front runner………

The media is going crazy for my Bullies too. Every time I turn around there’s another appearance by Dak Prescott on tv, another article from one of heavy hitters of the sportswriting world, another radio interview. The freakin’ cover of Sports Illustrated (along with Ole Miss).

It’s like a dream come true for this long suffering Bulldog fan. No, not a dream come true, a dream in progress. Maybe not even a dream at all but perhaps we’ve slipped into an alternate universe, one much like the old universe, but not quite.

And here’s the thing, I’m kind of getting fatigued by it all. Crazy right? Maybe it’s that I’m not accustomed to the stress but I’m a basket case waiting on Saturday to get here! Forty-four years I’ve been waiting for State to be appreciated by the outside world, to deserve being appreciated. Forty-four years of frustration that Our State never gets any positive attention and suddenly we’ve got it in spades (along with Ole Miss).

I tell you what, it’s given me an appreciation as to why Bama fans are batshit crazy. This winning is stressful. It’s so much harder when you believe, when you really believe your team can beat anybody.

God I hope it doesn’t stop.

TB lost my Pick of the Week for the third time in a row because South Carolina sucks. I’m done with them. I went 2-3 on bonus picks, my worst week of the year and my record is now a dismal 2-4 on Picks of the Week, 20-10 on bonus picks. The MTGU went 14-14 and 31-27 on bonus picks, now 78-74-7 and 180-140.  Flyin’ J won the week with authority, hitting his POTW and going 5-0 on bonus picks, including a great upset win by his alma mater, the Air Force Falcons over their intraservice rival, Navy.  Irving Redd gets the Dog o’the Week points for picking Arizona State and a DOTW shoutout goes to SDog, SmilyJ, The Daily Wit, and Tiny D. List of the week goes to Mac, because I appreciate his disdain for totalitarianism, and SOTW to Sweet for Jerry Reed’s, When You’re Hot, You’re Hot. At the halfway point, RSR leads the pack because Ole Miss is unbeaten against the spread this season. The State game (along with Ole Miss) shook up the college football polls this week and a similar shakeup occurred here in the MTGU.

Here are last week’s results, the top 14 won their POTW, everyone else lost, and bonus picks only are in parentheses.

  1. Flyin’ J (5-0)            80
  2. Tiny D (3-0)            68
  3. Irv (DOTW)             67
  4. TeaJay                    62
  5. Face                       62
  6. MD (1-0)                 62
  7. RSR                        62
  8. BR                          62
  9. Harmony                62
  10. Kitchen P                62
  11. Fish (2-3)                44
  12. Folly Jon (2-3)        44
  13. Sweet (4-1,Sotw)    43
  14. BW Buzz (3-2)        26
  15. Nelson (2-1)            26
  16. SDog (2-1)              26
  17. Mac (2-3 Lotw)       19
  18. TB (2-3)                   14
  19. RJ (2-3)                   14
  20. JLou                         10
  21. SmilyJ                       10
  22. TDW                        10
  23. Pitalo (1-4)                2
  24. Big Ed (0-3)              2
  25. DNP–Krebs, Fig, TKH

Season Standings:

  1. RSR                      359
  2. Kitchen P              301
  3. Flyin’ J                  296
  4. Folly Jon               288
  5. Irvine Redd           273
  6. SDog                     272
  7. TeaJay                 271
  8. Tiny D                   265
  9. Sweet                   261
  10. Mac                       259
  11. Fish                      254
  12. TB                         240
  13. BWBuzz               234
  14. MD                       233
  15. SmilyJ                   221
  16. Nelson                  221
  17. Face                     216
  18. Harmony              211
  19. RJ                         200
  20. Pitalo                    183
  21. Big Ed                   171
  22. JLou                      169
  23. Krebs                     155
  24. Fig                          154
  25. BR                         141
  26. TDW                      122
  27. TKH                        72
  28. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop 10

Here are my picks of the week and Here’s your HandyDandy Link to the Odds:

  • Washington State +17
  • Northwestern  +4
  • Georgia Tech  -3′
  • Iowa  -3
  • Georgia -3

POTW–Ole Miss +2′

My tunes this week reflect my discombobulation and roiling emotions:

  • Its ALong Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock and Roll) – AC/DC
  • All Shook Up — Elvis
  • Dream On – Aerosmith
  • Basket Case – Green Day

SOTW– Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey



Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/thursday-pickin-season-vii-week-7/

Oct 04

The Biggest Saturday Morning in Mississippi Sports History

Quote of the Day:

This is probably the biggest Saturday in Mississippi Sports History.”     –about a million people this week

TB rose this morning to glorious blue skies and the first brisks of the fall. I set out to get my morning exercise, walking and running a bit through the neighborhood and up the Natchez Trace, then back again.

Half of Mississippi is heading up to Oxford or Starkville this morning, the other half already being in those places, but yet another half was out running and walking and biking because mornings like this were made for that.

Most prevalent on my pre game perambulation were the cult of the the runner. They gathered in packs, as many as nine to a group, more often fivish. Sometimes they waved. Always they pounded up behind me, forcing me to the precipice of the asphalt trail before muttering in my ear, “on your left, mornin’, mumble-mumble” and then moving past.

Sometimes I picked up a bit of their conversation. Lots of stuff about “my shoes” or “friction”, some talk of “miles this week” and “miles last week.” One group went through that when they passed me the first time, then when I met them coming back it was “I’m gonna have 4 eggs.” “I’m gonna have 6 eggs.” “I’m gonna have 6 eggs and a cinnamon roll” (group laughter). Then someone admitted, we aren’t any of us really going to eat.

Actually, that may have been me, projecting. There wasn’t a decent drumstick in the bunch.

The best part came just before I left the trail to reenter my block.The crowd was momentarily dispersed and around the corner came a gentleman, mid-fifties I’d say with well coifed and thick gray hair. He was all in black, with walking shoes and black sweatpants, and a black turtleneck, and a hardbound book tucked under his arm.

I’m home now. Gonna scramble up some eggs, maybe have some biscuits and ham.

Two more hours ’til the biggest sports day in Mississippi history kicks off.


Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/the-biggest-saturday-morning-in-mississippi-sports-history/

Oct 02

Thursday Pickin’ Season VII, Week 6 (Magnolia Madness Week)

Quote of the Week:

Sweet, you’ve totally redeemed yourself in music pickin’ since the Luke Bryan debacle last year.”     –Nelson


The epicenter of College Football, maybe even all of the American sporting scene this week.

Worthy of a series of sentence fragments for sure.

Bulldogs and Rebels, Gameday and lofty rankings.

And now a haiku

That was the first line of it.

Bully and Bear’s chance to rise.

As you can see TB is pretty much punch drunk and worthless this week what with the anticipation for this weekend’s Bulldog game vs A&M, and I know many of you are the same about Ole Miss-Bama. I’m not the “poor-old-Mississippi” type by any means, but I have to admit, I never dreamed we’d get a weekend with four top 15 SEC teams squaring off, at home, on the same Saturday. It’s a really big deal and I for one am enjoying every second of it that doesn’t involve Pat Forde.

But before the games can be played, the picks must be made.

And before the picks may come, I must tell you about us being dumb.

Last week, that is, we were. Dumb.

I lost my POTW for the third week in a row to fall to 2-3 on the season, but I went 4-1 on bonus picks to move my overall record in the lesser category to an impressive 18-7. The MTGU went a dismal 7-14-5 on POTW’s. Ole Miss accounted for the 5 ties as Sweet confirmed per RJ’s Friday USA Today that the official TP line was 21. On bonus picks we went a respectable 24-23-7. Our record for the year on POTW’s falls to 64-60-7 and on bonus picks we are now 149-113.

Jessie Lou won the week by nailing her POTW and winning List of the Week. SmilyJ got the biggest Dog of the Week and MD picks up Song of the Week honors. Shoutout to Fish for a nice DOTW too. TB busted the curve to give free points to everyone from 6th place through twelfth.

Keep an eye on BR. He picked up a tie last week to move his record up to 0-4-1 on the season.

Here are last week’s results, remember the top 7 won their POTW, next 5 tied and everyone else lost; and bonus picks only are in parentheses. If you see an error with your scoring, just ask me to look at it. Did I mention I’m punch drunk and worthless?

  1. Jessie Lou McFaul (LOTW)  67
  2. Fish (3-1-1)                           62
  3. Irvine Redd                           62
  4. Pitalo   (2-3)                          44
  5. Sweet (2-3)                          44
  6. Flyin’ J (1-3-1)                      40
  7. SDog (0-3)                            40
  8. Mac                                       39
  9. RSR                                      39
  10. BR                                         39
  11. Kitchen P (1-1)                      39
  12. Krebs (0-3)                            39
  13. TB (4-1)                                38
  14. Nelson (3-1-1)                      32
  15. Tiny D (2-1-1)                       26
  16. Folly J (2-1-1)                      26
  17. RJ (2-1-1)                            26
  18. TJ (1-0)                               26
  19. SmilyJ (DOTW)                   15
  20. MD (SOTW)                        15
  21. Big Ed (1-2)                        14
  22. TDW                                    10
  23. Face                                    10
  24. Fig                                       10
  25. Harmony                             10
  26. BW Buzz (1-3-1                   8

Season Standings:

  1. RSR                       297
  2. SDog                     246
  3. Folly Jon                244
  4. Mac                       240
  5. Kitchen P              239
  6. TB                        226
  7. Sweet                   223
  8. Flyin’ J                 216
  9. SmilyJ                  211
  10. Fish                     210
  11. TeaJay                 209
  12. BW Buzz              208
  13. Irvine Redd          206
  14. Tiny D                  197
  15. Nelson                 195
  16. RJ                        186
  17. B Pitalo                181
  18. MD                       171
  19. Big Ed                  169
  20. JLou                     159
  21. Krebs                   155
  22. Face                     154
  23. Fig                        154
  24. Harmony              149
  25. TDW                    112
  26. BR                        79
  27. TKH                      72
  28. Special Guest Picker Doc Scoop  10

Here are my Picks of the Week and Here’s your HandyDandy Link to the odds:

  • Louisville   -1
  • Virginia Tech  -2′
  • LSU   +7′
  • Oklahoma  -5
  • E. Carolina  -40′

POTW, for the 3rd week in a row and so far they are O-fer-POTW — South Carolina  -3′

Mississippi Tunes this week:

  • Down in Mississippi – North Mississippi Allstars
  • Mississippi Saturday Night  – Old Crow Medicine Show
  • Starkville City Jail – Johnny Cash
  • Oxford Town – Bob Dylan

SOTW Shake ‘Em on Down  – North Mississippi Allstars


Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/thursday-pickin-season-vii-week-6-magnolia-madness-week/

Oct 01

Legal Weed in Mississippi?

A group is filing a petition in Mississippi to have legalizing weed put to the voters. My Republican friends (nearly everyone I know) already think I am a Marxist card carrying liberal so it should come as no surprise that I think weed should absolutely be legal in this country. That being said, this initiative has about as much of a chance at being passed in Mississippi as Roberta the town whore has in getting elected mayor. You see, Roberta is liked well enough in the community but we can’t admit that publicly. Definitely not in the church house come Sunday morning.

I wasn’t paying a whole heckuva lot of attention to this (because I know it’s a lost cause) but a “friend” on Facebook brought it to my attention. He posted an article about it and said something to the effect of “If you are for this, unfriend me now”. Well hell. You don’t have to ask me twice. I am always looking to cull folks from Facespace. I ain’t even remotely mad about it. We were only work acquaintances (he’s a cop) and I have said many times that life is too short to be getting pissed off all the time on social media. He did us both a favor.

I have had numerous arguments about legalizing marijuana over the years. The funny thing is that opponents have no good argument. Seriously. The only two I have heard that hold any water at all is “That it’s already illegal.” My problem with this is that it never should have been illegal in the first place. Alcohol is legal. In 18 years of running EMS calls, I can not count the number of calls I ran that involved alcohol. I have never been on ONE call where being high on weed was the problem. Unless eating the house out of Cheetos is an emergency. Folks arguing against weed legalization would have been the same folks upholding prohibition and breaking barrels of whiskey with axes. We should be clear about that. Not only is alcohol legal, we actively support it’s abuse. How many bars do you pass on your way home from work? How many cars are in the parking lots? How do you suppose all those people are getting home?

The second excuse they use and the most popular is that marijuana is a gateway drug. I am sure it is for some people. The same way some folks that like shooting guns end up shooting people. Look people, being BORN is the gateway drug. Life is a tough sonofabitch. Some folks deal with this differently from other folks. It’s almost as if we are all different people. Do some people move on from marijuana to other harder drugs? Sure. Do some people use weed for most of their adult lives without starting to shoot crap in their veins? Yep. Do some folks, like me, try it a few times in college and never again? Yep.

I just don’t get the hypocrisy. If you against any and all drugs (alcohol, tobacco, prescription pain killers, caffeine etc), I think you are a weirdo but I respect you.

If you think alcohol is ok and smoking one plant (tobacco) is ok but smoking another should send you to prison, I would like to take this opportunity to tell you to GFY.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.missingtheground.com/2014/10/legal-weed-in-mississippi/

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