Sports Illustrated writer Pat Forde is certainly no stranger to garnering the ire of college fanbases. He’s certainly had his fair share of internet dust-ups over the years over his reporting and commentary. Sometimes it’s warranted and sometimes it’s just college football fans not wanting an outsider to critique their team or fanbase.

On Saturday, the game between Tennessee and Ole Miss descended into chaos when Vols fans started throwing items onto the field, including beer cans, vape pens, a mustard bottle, and even a golf ball (directed at Lane Kiffin). Concern for the people on the field and commons sense led to a lot of understandable criticism of the moment. Even the SEC itself made a statement denouncing the events and threatening penalties.

Plenty of people took to social media to voice their disgust with Tennessee fans and these actions, but Forde’s comments might have struck a nerve when he tweeted about it.

The dislike between Tennessee fans and Forde goes back to the Greg Schiano affair when Forde went all-in on Vols fans who drove the narrative to get the Schiano deal revoked.

You people are ridiculous. Not all of you, but the delusional loudmouths who somehow think a program with a 62-63 record over the last decade is too good for Schiano. The internet vigilantes who want to bully their way into running the school’s coaching search. The piling-on politicians. The protestors. The rock painters. The rubes who still are waiting for Jon Gruden to slide down the chimney.

if you used this as a Trojan horse to blockade a coaching hire you don’t like because you think Tennessee football deserves better, shame on you. And now that the Schiano hire has been blown up because of this, good luck landing the next guy. Who would want to deal with this fan base right now?

That’s what was probably on the mind of Brian Rice, who co-hosts The Erik Ainge Show on Sports Radio WNML in Knoxville. Rice saw Forde’s comments about Tennessee fans being petulant and, well, proved his point, tweeting that Forde is banned from ever appearing on his radio station and threatening to “fight anybody on our staff who tries to have you on.”

“It’s a small thing, @ByPatForde, and you won’t care,” said Rice. “But you’re banned from our radio station, @SportsRadioWNML in Knoxville and I will literally fight anybody on our staff who tries to have you on. You are not welcome here. Tennessee fans have had enough of people like you.”

Forde, who presumably doesn’t make many appearances on WNML as it is, seemed okay with the news.

Meanwhile, Mike Golic Sr., who was calling the game on radio for Learfield, tried to add some common sense back into the mix by agreeing with Forde while also noting it was a pretty good game up until then.

Rice let a little bit of time pass before clarifying that he, in fact, will not fight any of his coworkers if they did decide to have Forde on as a guest, much as it would displease him.

Forde has always had a way with agitating college fanbases simply by reporting or reacting to them. But it’s not as though he was the only person calling what was happening in Tennessee embarrassing and bad, regardless of whether or not it was just a select number of fans people doing it. It was a bad look for Volunteers fans and they have to own it.

In the end, this was a good reminder that if the charge being laid at your feet is that you seem petulant, you want to try to avoid being petulant in your response.

[Brian Rice/Pat Forde]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to