Football

Feel free to embrace the pirate side of Mike Leach

Mike Leach's first
Mike Leach throwing a shirt into the crowd at the Mississippi State vs. Georgia Basketball Game after his short speech. Photo Courtesy Aaron Cornia of Mississippi State Athletics

Unless you have been living under a rock for about the past six weeks, you are well aware of the fact the Mississippi State football team hired a new head coach. Mike Leach comes to Mississippi State by way of the Washington State Cougars. And if you know anything about Mike Leach at all, you know he has a certain affinity for all things pirates.

Naturally, there were many people in the Bulldog fanbase who wanted to adopt Leach’s love of all things pirate into their fandom. People changed their Twitter avatars to pirate flags. The Bellsmith even offered cowbells with pirate handles.

When John Cohen made the long awaited announcement about who the new head coach was going to be, he just a had a video on his tweet and the entire world new exactly what he meant.

So a lot of people are having fun with the whole pirate side of Mike Leach. But that doesn’t mean everyone is.

There has been some backlash from fans saying fans are going too far with this pirate stuff. Some have even said we are going to replace our beloved Bully with some sort of pirate mascot.

For me personally, I am all for the pirate life at Mississippi State. Pirates are fun. The Pirates of the Caribbean movies are some of my favorites. Yes, I’m aware they are trash, but it’s trash I find entertaining because it’s all about pirate mayhem (and if you expected quality films based on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disney World and Disney Land, well that’s on you my friend).

I get why some people are getting a little put out by the numerous pirate references being so prevalent in the Mississippi State fandom. Change is not something many people are comfortable with, and this is a significant change for a lot of Mississippi State fans.

I’m here to tell you though this is simply some Mississippi State fans having fun. No one is trying to replace Bully and turn Mississippi State into the Pirates or Buccaneers. Washington State was and still is the Cougars. Texas Tech was and still is the Red Raiders. Fans who are doing this are doing it to show their appreciation for Mike Leach much like we did for previous football coaches hired by the school.

When Joe Moorhead was hired, people started saying there would be #MoorTouchdowns and #MoorExcitement (when in reality all we received was #MoorDisappointment). When Dan Mullen was the coach, we often incorporated some of his quirkiness into the things we posted on social media (we had a lot of fun with strain). And heck, some of you still have a Maroon is All That Matters shirt in your closet or chest of drawers (I want all of my clothing to be made of whatever those shirts are made of because they look brand new every time I see one in public and they are over 15 years old).

So if you’re one of the people worried about all of the pirate hullabaloo since Mississippi State hired Mike Leach, try to relax. No one wants to change traditions at Mississippi State. They just want to have some fun, and there isn’t any reason to stop people from having some harmless fun.

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