I’m leafing through Auburn’s media guide and on page 202, there’s a picture of Ryan Lackey, a recent K-State graduate who worked in media relations. It says he’s doing the same at Auburn, an assistant handling cross country, gymnastics and women’s tennis.
Anyway, on Monday at the Vanier Football Complex, there’s Lackey, back in Manhattan, in his first day on his new job at his alma mater, helping out on football and assuming the lead role on all things baseball.
He’s not listed in K-State’s award-winning media guide.
So I figured he’d be uniquely qualified to give the straight scoop on what might go down this weekend at Jordan-Hare Stadium and, well, I was wrong.
Asked how he was going to handle being a K-State alum while working at Auburn, Lackey said, “It was going to be difficult, I know that.”
He quickly realized the difference between the SEC and the Big 12 when he turned on the radio. The sports talk programs are bombarded with calls from Auburn or Alabama fans, both camps taking shots at each other. And the bitter rivals don’t play until Nov. 24.
K-State/KU, it’s not, he said.
And then there’s Jordan-Hare, which holds a capacity of 87,451 — about 35,000 more than “The Bill.”
“It’s not even the biggest stadium in the SEC,” Lackey said.
Auburn has only the fifth-largest, behind Georgia (92,746), Alabama (92,158), LSU (91,600) and Florida (88,548). But as Ron Prince recently said, fans won’t coming out of the stands to tackle the Wildcats.
There is a mystique, though. Look at the point spread — 13.5 points is a lot.
How about it, Lackey? A prediction?
“I can’t make a prediction,” Lackey said. “I’m not in a place to do that. I don’t know. I got nothing.”
Aren’t you better for reading this blog?