In the south, there are few things more precious than college football, particularly when it some to the South Eastern Conference.
And with good reason: The SEC has been absolutely dominating college athletics over the course of the last decade thanks to programs such as Alabama’s nigh-unstoppable Crimson Tide, and the recent rise of teams from the University of Georgia and Auburn.
There are two fantastic contenders from the state of Mississippi as well, with the Ole Miss Rebels and Mississippi State Bulldogs duking it out every year for the coveted Egg Bowl – the unofficial, (but totally official), state championship.
Now, the conference itself is tackling a new concern within the confines of these two legendary football programs, and it has less to do with shotgun formations and much more to do with actual guns.
“Mississippi’s House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday that would make it legal for anyone with an ‘enhanced firearms license’ to carry their weapons on public property. The vote margin was overwhelming: 80 in favor, 29 against, and 11 not voting.
“Greg Sankey, commissioner of the SEC, the athletic conference for both Ole Miss and Mississippi State, is worried about the bill’s potential, if it becomes law, ‘to introduce concealed carry weapons into stadiums, arenas and other college sports venues.’ He sent top leadership at both schools a letter dated Wednesday, asking for athletic events, stadiums, and arenas to be exempted.”
Given the often heated, and inebriated nature of the fandom in the SEC, there is certainly room for concern among football fans.
This isn’t the first time that the SEC has faced off against local gun legislation either, with a 2017 ruling in Arkansas that prohibited fans in the state from carrying weapons into college games.
That law was opposed not only by the SEC, but also by the smaller and lesser known Sun Belt Conference, to which Arkansas State and the University of Little Rock belong.