Quite frankly, it's pathetic when you have to include a sentence like this:
First and foremost, this is not a charitable crusade on behalf of Southern Miss. Indeed, if the best interests of USM were our primary concern, then we would probably be lobbying for Southern Miss’ entry into the SEC, a move that would have far greater benefits for the Golden Eagles than simply playing two in-state SEC opponents.Southern Miss in the SEC? Now that's high comedy. Their stadium holds a little more than 1,000 more fans than Vanderbilt's does and they don't bring up the conference GPA like the Commodores do. There's absolutely no conceivable rationale to even suggesting that except to throw fuel on a fire that exactly ONE fanbase has any desire to stoke.
There is absolutely nothing to gain for Ole Miss and Mississippi State to subsidize USM's football program. The article says "...it has been 19 years since MSU played USM in football and 25 years since Ole Miss did. That is ridiculous." To which I say, "No, that's business." The Rebel and Bulldog fanbases are just not interested in seeing that game. That's who the respective administrations are interesting in pleasing... not a small but vocal group of USM fans convinced they're being wronged.
Then there's this:
Tens of thousands of fans — and their money — would flow across the state … and stay in the state. It would be to the economic advantage of stores and restaurants and hotels throughout Mississippi. And it would boost tax receipts in the cities and counties where those businesses are located.Where to even begin with this statement? First, how many hotel room reservations will be lost because people would make the road trip that morning and leave after the game? Not to mention the dinners people wouldn't be eating in the towns as people would hit McDonalds or Taco Bell on the way out of town. Then there's the lost alcohol sales as people would curtail their drinking so they could make the trip.
That, sports fans, is clearly a legitimate concern for the governor and the Legislature, and that is why we encourage the Legislature to mandate that these games be scheduled as soon as possible.
And, like I said before, Mississippi has enough actual problems to deal with - teen pregnancy, childhood obesity, education - that the governor and the Legislature should not spend one nanosecond concerned with who plays who in football. To make the suggestion not once but twice is utterly ridiculous and shows a real lack of understanding of priorities. In fact, it's downright embarrassing.
Scheduling high profile out of state games like Texas Tech and Wake Forest and Texas is a much shrewder business decision than babysitting Southern Miss. College football is big business in Mississippi and if you can't run with the bigger dogs, than get out of the way and stop begging for a bone.