Saturdays in Athens

George Somerville

Week 12 

20th November 2021

Welcome to our weekly round up of life in the Southeastern Conference.

Look away Auburn fans as there is terrible news for the Tiger’s enigmatic QB, Texas A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher is emphatic about where his future lies, and it wouldn’t be a Saturday column without those Mississippi Mad Men Kiffin and Leach – or should that be Leach and Kiffin?

Here are this weeks headlines…Let’s get started y’all!

Bad Break For Bo

Auburn, AL

Few players in the SEC divide opinion like Auburn Quarterback Bo Nix. Nix has had an up and down season – in some games a superstar like some believe he is, while in others the frustrating player his detractors say he is. But without doubt, Nix has improved under first year Head Coach, Bryan Harsin, and he can be very exciting to watch.

So there was difficult news for the Tigers and their fans this week when Auburn confirmed their quarterback had broken his ankle and would miss the rest of the season.

Bo Nix confirmed via his official Twitter page that he would undergo surgery on Sunday after the game. Per ESPN, Nix will miss the remaining games against South Carolina and then the Iron Bowl against Alabama, which is scheduled to be played at Jordan Hare.

But every cloud has a silver lining, and this gives QB in waiting TJ Finley the chance he was looking for following his transfer from LSU.

Earlier in the week Finley talked about his mindset and preparation since he arrived in Auburn,

“I’ve been doing my best to be a leader since I got here. I know I’m young. I’m only 19 years old, but when people see you doing the right thing, they want to follow you. So I’ve been focusing on that, and those guys have been rallying behind me this week. And they’re supporting me as we go throughout this stage of not having our starting quarterback. They’re helping me, they’re lifting me up, giving me confidence.”


Jimbo's Staying Put!


College Station, TX

Of all the names being touted to take over the reigns in Baton Rouge, Texas Aggies Head Coach Jimbo Fisher is always at the top.

Whilst Jimbo has been clear that he isn’t taking the job, the rumours just won’t go away. Which is not surprising given that LSU Athletic Director Scott Woodward is the same Scott Woodward who took Fisher from Tallahassee to College Station. Throw in that Fisher can walk from the Aggies for free, it’s no surprise folks are saying he will be the next LSU Head Coach.

All except the man that matters most. On Monday Fisher gave his most indignant response to the rumours.

“We’re going to recruit an unbelievable class this year. So I’m either the dumbest human being on God’s earth who’s going to recruit all these guys to A&M, so I can go over there to play against them? 


If I did that you ought to say that’s the dumbest human being, I don’t want him to be my coach”. 

Fisher elaborated,

We’re going to recruit a heck of a class. We’re going to have special things here, we’re building special things – they’re investing in the program, they’re investing in everything we’ve got, we’re building a culture.


We are not where we are and that’s the disappointing thing about Saturday for me. That we didn’t take a step in some of the things I thought we really should of”. 

And then perhaps the most categorical statement yet from the Aggies Head Coach,

“But I want to be at A&M. I plan on being at A&M. I ain’t going, I don’t want to be nowhere else. I love being right here. Is that clear enough”?

So I’ll take that as a maybe then……


#TAMU #Howdy

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall - Who's The Greatest Offensive Mind Of All?

Image Credit: Chris Carlson/Associated Press

Starkville, MS

Hands up if you love the Egg Bowl? 

We all LOVE the Egg Bowl. But if the current love between the Head Coaches of the two Mississippi teams continues, then the meanest game in sports is likely to become  less horror movie and more rom-com. How so, I hear you all declare?

Well, it started on Saturday during ESPN’s College Gameday, which travelled to the Grove to preview the game between Ole Miss and Texas A&M. And the Guest picker was none other than the Rebels Head Coach, Lane Kiffin.

When the Mississippi State game against Auburn came round for prediction, the Ole Miss crowd bayed for blood, wanting their Head Coach to diss’ the Bulldogs. Of course, Kiffin pulled a shock out of the bag saying,

“Mike Leach is the best offensive coach in America….. “I’m taking Mississippi State.” 

Now, to be fair Kiffin wasn’t wrong – Mississippi State dismantled an Auburn team which has improved greatly under new Head Coach Bryan Harsin.

Of course it wouldn’t be the SEC without Mike Leach being asked about Kiffin’s comments. And so the Kiffin/Leach appreciation society was born. Mike Leach had these words for his across state compatriot,

“well he’s kinda setting the stakes for a really good Egg Bowl. I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t think that he thinks he’s the best offensive co-ordinator so it was modest of him to say”.

Leach went on,

“But you know they’re doing a fine job this year, so we’ll just let the love keep coming in both directions – how about that”.

#HailState #HottyToddy

The Big Man Speaks

Photo credit: University of Georgia Athletics Department

Athens, GA.

Georgia’s game against Charleston Southern this weekend signals Homecoming for UGA seniors and marks the last time that this Senior class will play on Dooley Field.

It is a moment of celebration, but also of reflection for this group of Seniors who are on the brink of greatness.

The biggest man on campus – both in stature and personality – is Defensive Tackle, Jordan Davis. At 6’6 and 340lbs Davis is a monster of a man who has got NFL scouts hot under the collar.

With Homecoming this week the big man spoke to the press about his time in Athens and playing his last game at Samford Stadium.

Talking about the Homecoming game and playing in Athens for the last time,

“It’s a bitter sweet moment”

Davis said,

“Obviously four years ago, you heard a lot about how this journey ends fast and it almost ends as quickly as it started. At the end of the day it’s one of those moments you really have to savour  and you really appreciate being a part of this program”.

Talking about his time in Athens and how he has developed to the point of being talked about in Heisman circles and high draft picks, Davis was humble in his response,

“Definitely unexpected. I never expected in a million years to be a part of this…you know I’m honoured and blessed – you sit back and think about things and say wow”.

Davis wasn’t taking all the credit for his rise in the game,

“It definitely wasn’t all by myself. I have a team of people, they deserve all the recognition because I couldn’t have done it without them….It takes a village to raise a child. I’m glad I chose this village”.

The big man is easy to root for, and going to the NFL with a National Championship ring would seem a fitting end to his Georgia football career.


And finally – while we are having a stopover in Athens, lets touch on a topic which has grabbed headlines in the South, but not before the watershed. Yes, everyone has been talking about Kirby Smart’s half time team talk during the Florida game.

It has been hilarious watching broadcaster’s trying their hardest to explain the content of Kirby’s talk without using the many, many expletives Smart uses during the short clip leaked from the locker room.

Suffice to say that Smart wasn’t holding back on his team, impressing upon them that their 24-0 half time lead meant nothing. To paraphrase the Kirbster, his point was to start the second half like it was zero-zero, and that he wanted to make the Gators feel like they never wanted to play football again. If you haven’t heard it yet there is a link below. But Parental Advisory required – there’s a fair few swear words in there, so make sure the kids aren’t around.

Of course this is all locker room chat and should never have been made available publicly. But still, it has done no harm to Kirby with UGA fans or recruits. So Let’s F****** Go!