Les Miles has some words of advice -- and even a warning -- for Missouri and Texas A&M as they prepare for their first season in the SEC.
"I would say 'Strap it up,'" Miles said at a Birmingham charity luncheon Tuesday. "They're going to really not enjoy their welcoming to this conference."
Miles's Tigers won't have the opportunity to have a personal say in Missouri not enjoying the SEC's collective non-welcome, but we're sure both Miles and his counterpart in College Station already have Oct. 20 circled on the calendar -- the Saturday LSU returns to Kyle Field for the first time since 1995. The Tigers and Aggies are each one of the other's oldest rivals, have played 50 times and could have their respective bulletin boards covered in quotes by kickoff, given that Miles is off and running and it's still only May.
But per the Birmingham News Miles had plenty more to say, starting with his support for Steve Spurrier's proposal that only division games count in the SEC's division standings.
"Whoever's playing Alabama and LSU on the other side, they're playing a very difficult opponent year in and year out and their opportunities to win their division will be reduced by the percentage of times they finish second in that game," Miles said. "I want the schedule to be fair, and I want it to give everybody the same opportunity."
"I'm for the Western Division deciding the Western Division champion and the Eastern Division deciding the Eastern Division champion."
Of course, we're not sure how fair such an arrangement would be to fans who would see their cross-divisional SEC rivals reduced to de facto nonconference status, but it's all a moot point anyway: Mike Slive has already weighed in against it, saying an "SEC game is an SEC game."
But what's certain about the issue is this: with two of the league's most vocal head coaches weighing in on it, SEC fans shouldn't expect it to go away anytime soon.
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