COLUMN: It’s a long shot, but Rebels still have a chance

Published 10:03 am Sunday, November 22, 2015

“So you’re telling me there’s a chance.”

If you’re a film connoisseur, that quote doesn’t need context. But here’s some in case you’re not familiar.

In the original “Dumber and Dumber” film, Jim Carey’s character, Lloyd Christmas, sets out to travel across the country with his nitwit roommate, Harry, to return a briefcase full of money to a woman he’s fallen hard for, Mary Swanson, unaware that Swanson, who originally met Lloyd in his limousine while being driven to the airport, intentionally left the cash in Lloyd’s car as ransom money for her kidnapped husband.

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You’ll have to watch the movie for all the funny details, but Lloyd eventually finds Mary again, tells her how he really feels and asks her what the chances are of the two getting together despite his imbecilic ways and the fact he’s unaware she’s already married.

Mary tells him they’re obviously not good before Lloyd responds with that hilarious line that’s gone down in cinematic lore.

It also accurately describes the Ole Miss football team’s predicament within the Southeastern Conference’s Western Division with its rather convincing win over LSU on Saturday during its latest turn on this roller coaster of a season.

The likelihood of the Rebels playing in next month’s SEC Championship Game has decreased drastically with each passing week. The loss to Florida left little margin for error, and that wild overtime setback to Arkansas cost the Rebels their own division destiny. That now belongs to Alabama, which can end all the speculation with a win over Auburn this Saturday.

But Ole Miss is the one team that could technically still play for a league title should the Tide slip up.

Mary actually told Lloyd his chances were “more like one in a million” when he kept pressing, and honestly, those are probably better odds than Ole Miss making the trip to Atlanta. The only way you’re beating Alabama this time of year is by throwing the ball, and neither one of Auburn’s quarterbacks, Jeremy Johnson or Sean White, have done that well through 11 games as the Tigers entered yesterday’s action with the league’s third-worst passing offense.

Oh, and Ole Miss can’t lose again in case you’ve forgotten that part of the equation. This all may be a moot point by the time the Egg Bowl kicks off Saturday night — Auburn and Alabama have the CBS slot at 2:30 p.m. — but should the Tigers happen to pull off one of the biggest upsets in Iron Bowl history, Ole Miss still has to find a way to slow down Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott, who’s added a refined passing game to his powerful legs.

Only Ole Miss was passing for more yards a game than Mississippi State in the SEC when games began yesterday, which will be yet another test for the Rebels’ shaky secondary in a stadium Ole Miss hasn’t won in since 2003.

But the Rebels still have an outside chance thanks to just their second win over LSU in the last six years and that win over Alabama in mid-September.

Considering everything that’s happened in between, that’s about all the Rebels could ask for.