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Brian Kelly Addressed His Newfound Southern Accent During Texas Bowl Broadcast

It's been about a month since new LSU coach Brian Kelly gave the halftime speech heard 'round the world. By now, everybody in the general orbit of college football has heard Kelly—a native of Everett, Mass., just outside of Boston—utter the word "family" laced with more molasses than Foghorn Leghorn at his most unbridled.

The incident quickly became fodder destined to live on in internet lore forever, and on Tuesday night during ESPN's broadcast of the Texas Bowl between LSU and Kansas State, Kelly joined the booth to publicly address accentgate for the first time.

I suppose Kelly deserves some recognition for attempting to address the issue head-on at all, even if the tactic was belated. But frankly, this explainer makes absolutely no sense.

With a high degree of confidence, I can say that no one in the greater New England area has ever uttered the words, "I'm from Boston—we don't have strong accents." Somewhere, probably in a Harvard bar, Will Hunting and his pals are spitting out their beers. Saturday Night Live had a running sketch called "Boston Teens" with a premise that delivered exactly what its title suggested. And Samuel Adams runs an advertising campaign that rings in the heads of every football fan called, "Your Cousin From Boston," in which the titular cousin speaks in an exaggerated Boston accent (if you've ever seen those ads, you definitely read that title in the tune of the incessant jingle).

Like anybody who takes a new job or moves to a new place, Kelly was just trying to fit in, and he probably never intended to become an overnight meme when he picked up the microphone that fateful night. Credit is due here for trying to have fun at your own expense. Kelly might win a lot of games with the Tigers, but his public showings over the past month have permanently disqualified him from speaking authoritatively on the subject of regional accents ever again.

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