Bulldogs sweep Ole Miss again

Published 12:00 am Saturday, May 31, 2003

It just seems like they can do it, that’s all. Whip Ole Miss in baseball, I’m talkin’ about, and you know I’m alluding to Mississippi State’s sweep of the Rebels this past weekend.

No matter how many seasons come and go, it seems that State has Ole Miss’ number on the diamond more seasons than not. After taking the Rebels Sunday in Oxford, MSU climbed into first place in the Southeastern Conference at 8-1. LSU hovered right behind at 7-1-1, and Auburn was close at 7-2.

Actually, every team in the top six has it to wreak havoc in the league. Auburn was 7-2 after weekend action, then Ole Miss, Arkansas and Alabama all had 5-4 marks. Balanced is what the league seems to be.

Email newsletter signup

About the best ball that has been played recently came from Coach Ron Polk’s battling Bulldogs. First Polk’s pounders swept Arkansas and Ole Miss. Coach Polk knows it and said as much. You don’t give Polk too much of your rope &045; he’ll hang you with it.

The No. 9 Bulldogs were in Jackson Wednesday for a night game with Ole Miss at Smith-Wills Stadium. Ole Miss is competitive in the league at 5-4 but tied for last in league games played at 5-4.

Ole Miss, Arkansas and Alabama had each won five and lost four games in the conference after weekend contests. Overall, though, the Razorbacks were 22-5, ‘Bama 20-7 and Ole Miss 17-10.

The SEC is a tough league any way you cut it. When national postseason playoffs begin, the SEC is used to making a pretty big splash. I’ve talked to some of the fellas who have made it a habit down through the years to keep up with the playoffs, and they recommend it all the way.

Meanwhile, they’re saying this will be the year of the quarterback in college football. I think they might be right. So how does Southern Miss, Mississippi State and Ole Miss have their candidates ranked?

USM needs badly to move back into the C-USA football limelight, and the Southerners are no different than other would-be contenders: they need to be sure the quarterback slot is solid.

But how are you gonna be sure when you have to break in a new signal caller? USM fans will be looking to sophomores Zac White and Micky D’Angelo to step up, with freshman Dustin Almond regarded the three top candidates for the QB spot.

Both sophs have been game-tested, but both saw action most of the time when the Eagles were either off and wingin’ or hopelessly behind. That’s why they make coaches, though, and if anyone knows that, Jeff Bower does. Just don’t sell USM short.

I know one thing: Football fans all over town have taken up the 2003 chant! Mississippi State and Ole Miss fans have collared me already, telling how their teams will fare come this fall. And, of course, they could be right &045; whether they anticipate good things or bad.

Personally, I’m looking forward to a great overall college football season. Don’t ask me much else at the moment, but I’m scanning already bits and pieces coming from the various camps.

Glenvall Estes is a longtime columnist for The Natchez Democrat.