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Attack on MSU, Ole Miss totally uncalled for

By By Stan Torgerson/sports writer
October 6, 2003
Sports writers and broadcasters can be like the Washington political media. Some of them live on adversity. Nothing inspires certain column writers more than the smell of blood.
When Mike Price got into trouble in Alabama the press dwelled on it for weeks. Heck, I took a shot at the situation myself, but it was in reaction to an actual occurance.
Columns on the Price situation were not based on speculation. They were in response to an actual idiotic action by a grown man who should have known better.
Opinions expressed may have been judgmental but they were valid. They were not the result of writers adding two and two and coming up with three or five. This is.
Last weekend I went to the Gulf Coast on a brief vacation. While there I picked up a copy of the Mobile Register containing a sports column by a writer named Neal McCready. It dealt with Mississippi State and Ole Miss.
I have no reason to protect Sherrill or his team. I'm certainly no maroon wearing friend of State. But I've got a thing about nastiness and this was nasty.
That's getting dangerously close to slander.
Then McCready turned his attention to Ole Miss. His target was coach David Cutcliffe.
After more of the same, McCready expressed a hope that Sherrill stays at Mississippi State and Cutcliffe at Ole Miss because Mississippi is a fertile recruiting ground for outside schools.
How would an Alabama sports writers know what's going to with recruiting in a state in which he doesn't even live? Is it fair for us in turn to ask what's happening to an Alabama team that is now 2-3 and in last place in the SEC West?
Does that mean in five games Mike Shula has proven he can't coach college football and should go back to the pros where he belongs? I don't know and I don't care. That's a decision that has to be made in Alabama by Alabamians.
Do you suppose McCready read the scores from Saturday and noticed Ole Miss beat Florida and Mississippi State knocked off Vanderbilt? And for frosting on the state's football cake, Southern Mississippi defeated Cincinnati.
I don't have any brothers or sisters so I'm a bit short of information on what happens between siblings.
But I do know that while inside the family fights are both allowable and common, those on the outside should keep their noses out of family business. How the Rebels or Bulldogs perform in games is every football fans business coast to coast. But whether Jackie Sherrill's team is devoid of talent and discipline and whether David Cutcliffe is or isn't a good recruiter is Mississippi business with the ultimate conclusions to be made by Mississippians. Mississippi is my family and I resent outsiders telling me what's allegedly wrong with it.
For our readers with Southern Miss connections, do me a favor. Tell our brothers in Hattiesburg it's important they beat Alabama Saturday. And thank them for me if they do.