Trash-talking tradition continues for 102nd Lil’ Brown Jug game

Mayors spar verbally over Lil' Brown Jug game
Published: Sep. 1, 2023 at 11:45 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 1, 2023 at 11:46 AM CDT
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - The much-anticipated 102nd Battle of the Lil’ Brown Jug is set for Friday night.

The game between the Hattiesburg Tigers and the Laurel Golden Tornadoes will be hosted at the R.H. Watkins Stadium, a.k.a. “Between the Bricks,” at Laurel High School at 7 p.m.

Last year, the Tigers opened the second century of games with a 34-14 win over the Golden Tornadoes at D.I. Patrick Stadium.

In anticipation of this year’s game, Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker made a light-hearted Facebook post, claiming to have sent a memo with a few “budget priorities” for Downtown Laurel to Laurel Mayor Johnny Magee and the Laurel City Council.

We have reached out the the City of Laurel for a comment, and Magee jokingly sent the following response:

“I would like for everyone to keep Mayor Toby Barker in their thoughts and prayers.

He was in a meeting in Hattiesburg at SMPPD on Wednesday and made the statement that the Hattiesburg Tigers were going to defeat the Laurel Tornadoes, and keep the Little Brown Jug!

There have been some brutal high temperatures in Hattiesburg over the last few weeks, and evidently, the mayor has had some sort of heat-related episode.

That is the only thing I could think of, for him to be making this kind of out-of-this-world of statement.

It has been proven that prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures can be detrimental to your mental capacity.

It is sad that a young man with so much talent, so much potential and so much going for him, to be affected mentally in this way.

I wish my friend a speedy recovery. We also invite him to come Between the Bricks on Friday night and we will find him a couple fans, and some ice water to keep him cool, while he watches his Tigers be demolished by this group of most capable Tornadoes. Hopefully, his caregivers can point out the scoreboard to him, and of course explain to him what it means, when it shows Home leading the Visitors. I know with a delicate mental situation; it is difficult to take in too much data at one time.

He also may need to have a driver for the trip to Laurel, because of his mental condition, he may not be able to remember how to get to Laurel.

It is evident that he was in Laurel a few days ago, and in his mind thought he was in Hattiesburg, seeking to rename streets and take other actions in another jurisdiction, that was so far out of his purview; it further shows the deterioration and his fragile state of mind. He also keeps babbling something about the colors purple and gold, when everyone in South MS knows that the only recognizable colors of any reputable football team are the Cardinal and Gold of the Laurel Tornadoes.

Get better soon friend.

Laurel-24 Hattiesburg-21.”

- Mayor Johnny Magee

This is not the first time the two Pine Belt mayors have engaged in a little pre-game fun.

Last year, Barker could be seen washing Magee’s vehicle after losing a friendly wager over the outcome of the 2021 game.

It started with Barker’s offering to build a museum for the Lil’ Brown Jug in Hattiesburg. He even offered to let Laurel’s hometown celebrities, Erin and Ben Napier from HGTV’s “Home Town,” design it.

Magee declined the offer and made a counteroffer that Laurel annex Hattiesburg and name it South Laurel.

Both mayors eventually agreed to the following terms: If Laurel won, Barker would wash Magee’s car. If Hattiesburg won, Magee would make a toast to Hattiesburg at Laurel’s New Year’s Eve Party.

Laurel went on to win that game 50-0.

For those who do not know, the Battle of the Lil’ Brown Jug is a rivalry football game against the Hattiesburg and Laurel high schools. The game has been going on reportedly since 1922 and is said to be the state’s longest continuously-played high school game.

In addition to bragging rights, whichever team wins Friday night will get to house the aforementioned Lil’ Brown Jug in its city.

This story will be updated when more information is provided.

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