Last week we looked at the first four games on the Alabama football schedule with an eye toward pairing the perfect food and drink with each Crimson Tide victory.
This week we start off with one of our practice games and then dive right into the heart of the SEC schedule. Check your liver at the door and join us, won’t you?
September 29: Alabama vs. Ole Miss. The Ole Miss football program is a dumpster fire right now. I can’t name a current player on the Ole Miss roster; about all I know about them is that they hired the high school coach from The Blind Side. Since I have nothing insightful to say about Ole Miss football, did you know that Tim McGraw played the husband/dad in that movie? I watched the entire film and didn’t realize it was him until the credits rolled. Most musicians make terrible actors, but Tim McGraw has genuine talent. The scene in Friday Night Lights where he puts the championship ring on his son’s hand is downright powerful. Seeing Nick Saban in LSU garb was a bit odd as well.
Suggested food and cocktail: Hamburgers (can’t think of a Mississippi specific cuisine) and Four Roses bourbon (it’s what Faulkner drank).
October 13: Alabama at Missouri. Outside of the trip to Baton Rouge, this is the game that worries me the most in the upcoming season. It’s not that I think Mizzou has a particularly strong team, but it is the Tigers’ first season in the SEC and the atmosphere should be electric when the defending national champions come to town. I fear that this road trip could be similar to the trip to Columbia in 2010, with the national exposure and hyped-up crowd. Let’s hope that my fears are overblown, and Alabama’s history against spread offenses suggests they are.
Suggested food and cocktail: Kansas City strip steaks (medium rare or medium if you must) and Budweiser. Make fun of the king of beers all you want, but Bud is my favorite beer. I’m a simple man, I guess.
October 20: Alabama at Tennessee. The Third Saturday in October is one of the great rivalries in college football. This year the Tide will travel one state north and 20 years back in time to Knoxville. Normally 100,000+ hillbillies clad in that repugnant orange would qualify as a hostile atmosphere, but recent years have shown that Tennessee is better suited to the Sun Belt conference than the SEC. While it is usually unwise to assume a comfortable victory in a rivalry game, realistically Alabama should beat the Vols handily.
Suggested food, cocktail and victory cigar: Chicken wings, Jack Daniel’s and an Ashton Magnum.
October 27: Alabama vs. Mississippi State. I think it is safe to say the bloom is off the Dan Mullen rose. Last year Mississippi State was the trendy sleeper pick in the SEC, but much like Ole Miss in 2009 and Arkansas in 2010, expectations proved too high for reality. The Bulldogs lost Vick Ballard, who by my completely unscientific analysis, provided 97.2 percent of MSU’s offense last year, so they will have big shoes to fill. The game will be in the friendly confines of Tuscaloosa so Alabama will not have to deal with more cowbell. Barring a rash of injuries or a completely flat effort, the Tide by all logic should emerge victorious from this contest.
Suggested food and cocktail: Hot dogs and Sam Adams Oktoberfest.
Next week, we close out our series with the Iron Bowl and how to properly prepare for a Tiger mauling.
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