Clearing the Air


I honestly don’t care what readers think about me, but I do care if it’s because of a misperception. And some people, not necessarily on this blog, have called into question my ability to be fair toward Mississippi State. And they make good points on two things: A) When I mistakenly wrote that MSU hadn’t beaten a ranked team since 2000; and B) when I wrote about MSU’s talent level always being behind other SEC teams.

As to the first one, that was a simple misread, though a red flag should’ve gone up in my brain. In my haste to hit deadline Saturday, I either didn’t notice the light, or I just missed that altogether. I actually added that detail after I’d written the rest of my story, so that people could appreciate the magnitude of the victory. I should have written, of course, that it was the highest-ranked team MSU has beaten since 2000.

As for the other, I didn’t say it the way I meant to say it. I should’ve said that on a year-to-year basis, MSU’s talent level is not going to be at the top of the SEC. I should’ve been more careful with my choice of words. My bad.

Anyway, just wanted to clear up any confusion about my ability to be objective and fair. I’ve got nothing personal against MSU, and I think the Bulldogs’ struggles thus far have magnified my slip-ups. Hopefully, there will more positive things to write about in the future, but in the meantime, I’m not going to blow sunshine up anyone’s butt just for the sake of it. And I will do a better job.

Some folks already have made up their minds about me, and that’s fine. Can’t change that, and it doesn’t bother me.

There, I feel better.


20 Responses to “Clearing the Air”

  1. jmbulldog Says:

    Don’t worry. Some people like to hate just for the fun of it.

  2. dadwithpride Says:

    Dittos here. If anything, its a breath of fresh air. If people remember, Gregg was just the opposite, his last few weeks, but thats because its hard to be critical of your future employer. Tell it like it is, let the chips fall. Being a State fan is like having a brother: We’ll can cuss one another all we want, but I’ll still have his back when needed.
    Hopefully , being so realistic won’t hurt your ability to report on mSU, in other words, not get the callbacks when needed, or not invited to press conferences, etc.
    Anyway, keep up the good work.

  3. dadawg Says:

    I don’t comment a lot but I do read the posts and the printed articles. Hey, we all make mistakes but I had not really noticed anything biased. Believe me, I would have commented if I had.

    Change is hard for most people and you came in at a rough time for MSU fans.

    Don’t take it personally and keep reporting what you know about MSU and let the chips fall where they may.

    I appreciate your honesty and it shows that you care about what you do. Obviously, we all care what people think about us but sometimes it just comes with the job.

    Keep swinging…

  4. bulldog38 Says:

    Keep calling it like you see it Brad, evidently some people don’t want to hear the truth. Croom has been getting a free ride for too long on some of his decision making and it’s time for someone to stand up and question his abililty.

  5. irondawg Says:

    Brad, don’t you dare give in to those people. Report as you see fit, which to this point has been in a way that’s honest and factual. It takes guts to call a spade a spade.

    These people that are getting on to you always do the same thing. If an MSU fan criticizes MSU sports teams and coaches enough, they get labeled as a “Rebel.” That’s what’s happening here to you. As soon as you report what the sheep MSU fans don’t want to hear, they lash out at you and call you biased against MSU. They live in a constant state of denial.

  6. topdog58 Says:


    Only one thing needs to be said to those toolsheds….


    It must be wonderful living in their fantasy land, but I for one am sick of Crooms and the devastation he’s bringing on MSU. The longer he is the coach, the deeper the hole is getting. It’s up to Greg Byrne now. He can sack up and put an end to this now, or he can be a loser like his predecessor and hang on to a coach for too many damn seasons too long.

  7. 83dawg Says:

    I believe there’s an old newspaper saying, “if everyone is happy with everything you’re doing, your not doing something right.” You’re doing it right by telling things like they are. Keep up the good work.

  8. goldendawg Says:

    You’re doing a fine job, Brad.

  9. shmuley Says:

    You mean to tell me that someone was aggravated at an assertion of fact – that MState’s talent level as compared to legitimate SEC contenders is woefully below average? Who are these fruitcakes who assert that State’s talent matches up?

    Stevie Wonder can see the accuracy of your assertion, Brad. Holy crap, we’ve got a WALK-ON QB starting and a WALK-ON receiver starting. Meanwhile our all world kicker/punter can’t seem to get over his yeast infection.

    Pay no attention to Jeanie Weanie idiots.

  10. dawgbydesign Says:

    Maybe it should bother you for no other reason than I am sure it bothers your boss.

    Anything that affects revenue affects your boss. You should know that.

    Finally, your “it doesn’t bother me” attitude shows up in your writing whether you are able to admit it or not.

    There I feel better.

  11. msudawginbama Says:

    just keep it up man. if people are mad @ you, it just means you’re doing your job right.

  12. db33 Says:

    Honestly, I think for the most part you are doing a fine job.

    However, it doesn’t sit well that you have professed to be a born & raised in Oxford Ole Miss fan.

    Or do you dispute that?

  13. Brad Locke Says:

    No disputing that, db33. I was born there, my parents went to Ole Miss, I grew up a Rebel fan, finished my schooling there – more out of necessity than anything else – but I don’t think that should disqualify me from this job.

    Hey, Gregg went to Ole Miss (and to State). My dad did the same thing – a B.A. from Ole Miss, a master’s from MSU.

    I say criticism doesn’t bother me because I don’t want to be the kind of writer who panders to readers and is easily swayed. I wouldn’t be doing my job if I let that happen. I’ve learned not to let either criticism or praise sink in too deeply.

    Nevertheless, thanks for all the supportive comments. It’s very much appreciated.

  14. carwwest Says:

    keep up the good work BL….it is nice to read some real material about state football instead of reading “everything is going great, nothing is wrong” stuff that is all over the place…

  15. lollipopkid Says:

    How could anyone get mad about the “talent” comment? Have you seen the recruiting rankings in the SEC? We are always in the lower tier. How could our talent not lag behind someone like Tennessee. Their athletic budget is bigger than our university’s operating budget for Pete’s sake! Being a State fan is like being a Kansas City Royals or Minnesota Twins fan. We’re always going to lag behind others in revenue (which covers up mistakes). That’s why it’s so important that the coaches make the most out of the talent that we get.

  16. imabulldog Says:

    I think you do a great job man. I know I complained once after the LA Tech game, but we appreciate the job you do. Thanks for the article on Croom, you know I liked it- just hope you get to right the follow up late Saturday night on the big win Saturday. But we’ll see.

  17. dawgface52 Says:

    I haven’t noticed any complaints about you here. But I don’t read the blog and responses every day. You articles have always seemed fair to me. Heck, I bet most MSU fans are more critical of the Dogs than you ever thought about being. Just keep reporting the facts. That’s all anyone can do. I don’t put any sugar on my cereal and I don’t expect you to do that in your articles. 🙂

  18. Brad Locke Says:

    I like sugar on my Corn Flakes. Except I haven’t eaten Corn Flakes in years. Not a cereal person any more.

  19. deaddawg1 Says:

    Shucks BL, we expect honest factual reporting. If you want to add your opinion, say so, and let er rip!!!!!!

  20. msudawginbama Says:

    wanna talk about head-in-the-clouds reporting?

    i’ve still got the newspaper clipping from the Mobile Press Register from the 2001 preseason that reads:
    “There could be Cowbells in Pasadena”

    the guy picked State to play for the national title…most of us remember how THAT season ended…

    doing a good job, man.

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