Corder: Can football get here

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 9, 2003

fast enough?



Email newsletter signup

That’s it. I don’t care if a thin coat of dust lightly guards players’ footlockers in athletic dorm rooms all over the country.

So what if coaches pulled their whistles off hooks and every gladiator from the freshman, fourth-string holder to the fifth-year, medically red-shirted senior slapped pads, helmets and knee braces on respective body parts for the initial time, since spring, this past week.

Kickoff is not for another three weeks, but college football is here, and I feel like leveling someone and then letting you know about it. You don’t want this 5-7, 155-pound, 11.2 40 time Adonis building any steam &045; I’ll flatten you worse than a busted Michelin.

To paraphrase the late columnist/author Lewis Grizzard, watching football from any other region than the South is like watching mules pull up turnips.

For the first time since the Southeastern Conference split into two, the West is more top-heavy than the East.

Think about it. The Florida Crocodiles (thanks to a U of F sports information gaff, Paul Hogan and Steve Irwin’s favorite animal appeared on the cover of the 2003 football media guide instead of a ‘gator) might start an overrated freshman at quarterback.

Tennessee looks like it doesn’t want Phil Fulmer donning the road-worker’s orange anymore after an 8-5 season that included a 30-3 thumping in the Peach Bowl to Maryland &045; it maybe only a couple hours drive, but Atlanta is certainly not the Vols’ town, with those mighty Terrapins picking Tennessee clean after its SEC Championship second-half meltdown to LSU the year before.

Despite its predicted No. 1 Eastern finish, Georgia is not the same team as last year’s SEC kings, losing a total of 13 starters from both sides of the ball.

Plus, the proof is in the bread pudding. Glancing at meaningless polls shows the highest-ranked team from the league is none other than Tommy Tuberville’s Ole Miss Re&045; what’s that? Tuberville is at Auburn? Has been for several years? What happened? I distinctly remember him saying he had no interest in the Auburn job back in 1998.

With only two vital names absent from last year’s 9-4, victorious Capital One Bowl team it’s the Plaintigles that are the perennial favorite to book those early December reservations at the Hyatt Regency on Peachtree Street.

If Nick Saban can stay far away from docks then LSU has a shot to avenge last year’s karma ending that kept them out of Atlanta, in which two Hail Marys from Arkansas burned them like their ESPY-award winning Bluegrass Miracle.

Alas, Ole Miss fans, yours truly was just poking a little fun. The weapons for the Rebs are all there &045; a Heisman wannabe and a sick group of receiving corps. Now, find me a back and the guts to win in November, and I’ll quit abusing your boys.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a word about those Bulldogs from Starkvegas. Unfortunately, with an NCAA tornado barreling through Winona, I won’t add yardage with unnecessary roughness penalties. I think six wins in 17 games and two SEC victories in 14 tries over the last two seasons speak loud enough.

That 1998 SEC Championship seems like eons ago. What is that in dog years?

Chuck Corder

is a sports writer for The Natchez Democrat. You can reach him at (601) 445-3633 or by e-mail at