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THE TAILGATE: A Graphical Preview of Texas A&M at Mississippi State

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OOPS! Thought we had another bye week. LET’S TAILGATE

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MORE COWBELL

I put a call out to Twitter for inspiration in writing this week’s Tailgate. This is normally a risky proposition, however, people did deliver in spades this week. First, I have to thank @KMays10 for alerting me to the “Bulldog Bad Boys” calendar on Amazon. Part of me wanted to analyze how these good puppies got in so much trouble, but that’s an article for another day.

The winner this week was @JohnnyKarate05 who introduced me to MSU Hype Song - Mississippi State of Mind by The Nappy Whigs. The first thing I noticed was the clever wordplay in the title. I’m thinking of penning one for the Aggies called “Farmers Fight (for your right to party)", but if you know me, you know I’m stopping at the thought.

Now, as far as sports fan songs go, this is pretty decent. It’s no Johnny Football Song, but it’s decent. The only letdown here is that it wasn’t a hick-hop track, because that garbage deserves to be shot in a rocket to the sun. I have no beef with The Nappy Whigs, they seem like fun dudes I’d like to drink with, but this is a pregame post and I have a job to do. I can’t do the whole thing, but here are a few lines that stood out to me.

“We coming for your heart so before we start go on and put a stent in”

First of all, organ theft is no laughing matter. Trust me, that last Bumble date who took my kidney is gonna be in big trouble when the law catches up to her. I do think it’s ballsy to put the onus on the person from whom you’re stealing the heart to put the stent in. Why not just steal a healthy heart? If you’re gonna traffic organs, get better donors. That’s just lazy.

“My state of mind is a place for these dime rhymes to mint in / And if you cross the line that’s the place that they’re gunna be spent in”

Honestly, I have no idea what this means. I get the front half of the couplet, he’s in a perfect state of mine to be penning dope-ass poetry. Understood. I’m struggling to understand what happens if I cross that supposed line. Is he talking about an anxious brain that will replay various scenarios of my line-stepping and spitting freshly minted rhymes at a fictional version of me, therefore, spending the aforementioned “dime rhymes” in his head? If so, I totally get it and can recommend a good therapist for stuff like that. Just let it go, man.

“Yelling hail state from the stands with a plate in my hand full of Cheese fries”

This is my favorite line in the whole song. It’s honest. It’s like me rapping “Yelling ‘dammit, ags’ while lying in my own filth on the couch good lord nobody is ever gonna love me like this please just win and make it all better.” Now that I think about it, that’s pretty catchy. Maybe I will write that song.

Aggies - 28
Dogs - 16


CAST OF CHARACTERS

Y'all know how the center is the key guy to any offense? Well if Braden Mann is the QB of the special teams, that makes #45....I forgot what I was talking about. Anyway, when's the last time you remember a bad snap on any kind of Aggie kick? Exactly. He's got ONE JOB. And he excels at it.

We're gonna keep making the rounds on the offensive front here. Mississippi State's defensive line isn't as good as Clemson's or Alabama's, but they're a short cowbell's toss from being in the same category. Hopefully the heavies got their beauty rest last week.

Hell yeah, let's just make this an all-lineman Cast of Characters this week. One of the SEC's top sackers from last year has been relatively quiet so far in 2018, and having to account for Nick Fitzgerald is going to mean a lot of different looks from the front seven. Good opportunity for #46 to make a few big plays.

Sure, this guy's one of the SEC's top sack artists, but more importantly his name sounds like one of the '90s best knockoff hip-hop artists. Like when you were 10 and asked your parents for that really cool CD and instead you got Montez Sweat's Greatest Hits, with a closeup of him in a rad patterned sweater.

Okay, look. A very talented, dual threat QB got absolutely shut down last week by LSU. This is the point in seasons past where he'd lick his wounds, return home to Starkville, and put on an absolute clinic against the next defense up (read: us). Time to see how far we've come under Elko, ladies and gents.

Hey, you don't win the Tax Slayer Bowl MVP honors as a safety and not get a shout out in this here TAILGATE section. This guy's got a knack for picks, so couple things here, offense: a) don't throw bad passes in his area, and receivers, don't let good passes clang off your mitts like they're a couple of padded cowbells. That'd be great.


MILLERTIME

This thing on? Turns out it’s nearly November and we’re poised at the precipice of four straight conference wins. Cool, huh?
Speaking of SEC, it's time for a sea-change in attitude, folks. Let's cool it with the aw-shucks, glad-to-be-here down home schtick. This is football, and we need some hard-edged loathing. Mississippi State's one of those schools we're supposed to beat the clappers out of. Their best coach ever just upgraded to Florida Man status and now his replacement's finding out that his B1G offense might not work as well down here. Hell, you know it's bad when Stingray is jumping ship. Their passing game's so anemic it makes Moby look like Arnie Schwartzenegger, OK? And Starkville...anybody ever been to Starkville? Exactly. How bad does your town have to be for Johnny Cash to actually remember the jail well enough to write a song, babe? Nah. These clowns have beaten the rockers off us our last two trips there when we were ranked higher than Willie Nelson on a rollercoaster. And with as much stability too, I might add. Let's buckle down, grind it out, and establish ourselves as at least the 4th best team in the division, capisce?
Course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong.


WHAT TO WATCH FOR

90'S THROWBACKS

I don't mean uniforms - well actually I kinda do. On Saturday you will turn on your television and watch a team wearing maroon and white play kick-you-and-take-your-lunch-money defense while struggling to get to 10 points on offense. All that's missing is Coach Slocum on the sidelines in one of his signature outfits and it's the Wrecking Crew heyday all over again. Get out your zubaz and party like it's 1999 and we've won a conference title in recent memory! Except we're in Starkville, and that's Mississippi State in those uniforms, and my god what is that awful noise and oh god no is that Joe Moorhead the gypsy said not to let him travel west of Appalachia nnnnnnnnnoooooooooooooo-

Note: if you don't click that link above then you don't deserve the happiness it contains.

BIG CATS

At least according to A&M DE Landis Durham, who will have the unenviable task of tackling MSU QB Nick Fitzgerald probably dozens of times this weekend. Fitzy may not be a 99 on Speed, but he's got a lot of truck stick to him and he's had A&M's number two years in a row. Look for another week of Untoppable Force Meets Immovable Object as another vaunted SEC rushing attack meets the #4 rushing defense in the country and the Aggies try to force the Bulldogs to use their passing attack... such as it is.

HIGH JINX

If the foil hat wearers are right and ESPN actually hates us, they are playing some 9 dimensional chess with this low blow. Listen, it's fine if you guys want to create a metric that actually acknowledges that the Aggies haven't had a bad loss yet. But how dare you put that on the front page?! We prefer our bluster safely in the off season where no one can actually be proven right or wrong.


ELSEWHERE IN THE SEC

TIRED: Watching The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party featuring #9 Florida at #7 Georgia. Here's all that matters: no matter what, if the Aggies win they will climb ahead of one of these teams.

WIRED: Watching an 11AM screening of 3-5 Vanderbilt at 2-6 Arkansas. If you aren't into watching drunken fistfights at fast food restaurants on YouTube, then maybe this isn't your thing. If it is your thing, remember that Vanderbilt scored 17 points against undefeated Notre Dame the same day that Arkansas scored 17 points against North Texas. Whiskey up that coffee folks, this one will be fun.


HOTREELZ


ROI'd RAGE

After some deliberation I have decided to make the Mugdown Tailgate canonical, letting Jimbo clear just over 4.2 mil before taxes after a serviceable, workmanlike, lunchpail, 'nother coach on the field type win over South Carolina. But Bye Week ain't played nobody and neither did the Aggies. Until we see another favorable result on the field, I am only willing to float Jimbo an $11.99 buffet at Golden Corral. Add in another $2.11 for a dag-blamed $0.40 worth of soda, plus tax and a dollar tip for the person who put in all that work bringing you the check and pointing out where the buffet was (SPOILER ALERT: it's everywhere. It's the whole restaurant.), and we'll call it $16.26.

Good bye week coach. Back to work.


PLACE YOUR BETS


BEST CASE / BESTER CASE

BEST CASE

Aggies win in Starkvegas. That's it. That's the best place. It's been hell at MSU in the past and I'm not gonna push it.

BESTER CASE

Ags win in Starkvegas and nobody ever talks to me about politics again. Ever.