Ohio State vs. the world — How the Buckeyes and their fans feed off perceived slights

Ohio State vs. the world — How the Buckeyes and their fans feed off perceived slights
Ohio State vs. the world — How the Buckeyes and their fans feed off perceived slights

Don’t look now, but the Ohio State Buckeyes and their fans don’t feel respected. They’re restless, irritable and angry. They are making an inventory of all the names of those who tried to shorten the invitation to the Buckeyes’ College football play-offs, the sportswriters and Dabo Swinney, the radio athletes and Dabo Swinney, and the leaders in the desert and Dabo Swinney.

Yes, here, in the fast minutes between now and the start of the Ohio State PCP semifinal against Clemson (and Dabo Swinney) on Friday (8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, ESPN), they go round in circles in Columbus, Ohio. They are frustrated, activated and their anger is exacerbated because they do not feel honored.

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The good people at number 17, from head coach Ryan Day to the guys who dress up as former head coach Woody Hayes, will tell you they hate the feeling. They’re trying to convince us that they’re SO on what they’ve been experiencing for a long time. But after all those years of watching Ohio state football winning so many games (928) and so many national championships (eight), we know better.

Buckeyes don’t hate. They live for it. And if you’re a real college fan, it’s hard to hate that kind of love for your team, even if it makes them hate you back.

Fault! The file name is not specified. Ohio state fans feed on this lack of respect, but according to state history they just follow a long line of Ohioans doing the same. AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File.

I feel like I need to take a break here to give you a personal insight. In the past ten years, my relationship with the Ohio State fans has been, shall we say, tumultuous. At the Dane County Regional Airport, I was caught by a man with an oversized Eddie George jersey who wanted to know why my favorite ESPN SEC asshole would dare come to Madison, Wisconsin for an Ohio-Wisconsin game.

One morning, during the traditional Skull Session walk at Horseshoe, I saw a royal bottle being thrown at me by a heel, which fortunately had already eaten the contents of the bottle and therefore missed about 30 meters.

One night a friend of mine who lived in Columbus had a date with Match.com, and then the couple went to What do you do for a living? During the interview, she said she was in sports marketing. Soon my name came up as the name of someone she worked with, and her appointment soon surfaced again. Why is that? Because of an article I wrote the year before in ESPN The Magazine with an excerpt about Tattoo Gate. Hey, I didn’t design the cover… Meg’s artists did.

I suppose all this should bore me, if I’m not worried. But it’s not. Although no one approves of the idea of beverage bottles as a projectile, I appreciate the passion that lies behind arm after arm. I also appreciate the story behind this passion, the actual DNA that runs in the veins of every Ohioan, creating pride in the home state and a deep loathing.


National College Football Championship presented by AT&T
Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Gardens, FL)
11. January: 20:00 PM ET on ESPN

University Football Semi-Final at the Rose Bowl
AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas)
Friday: 16:00 ET on ESPN and the ESPN application.

Semifinal of the school football play-offs at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome Allstate Sugar Bowl (New Orleans) on Friday: 1:08 20:00. AND about ESPN and the ESPN application.

When it appeared that Dabo Swinney was in 11th place in the last regular season poll of coaches… …or that maybe three SEC head coaches – Nick Saban, Kirby Smart and Jimbo Fisher – all had OSUs outside their top 4… or that Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly and, yes, Dabo Swinney, made passionate speeches before and after the CCA championship game about why a team that only played six games (Ohio State) didn’t deserve the same chance to win the national title as they did… in Buckeye Nation it’s like a rubber hammer hitting a knee in the right place. But this reaction is not so much instinctive as integrated into human physiology over hundreds of years.

Since the beginning of the 16th century there have been wars in Ohio in the 19th century, from the Beaver War to the war of 1812, including of course the border dispute between Toledo and Michigan. This state was founded by Rufus Putnam, a man from Massachusetts who was so indignant about the British march on Lexington and Concord that the next day he joined the Continental Army and became one of George Washington’s right-hand men.

It was a state that, in the early 19th century. He was so fed up with the federal government in the 19th century that he said we were leaving here, and he went to the department in 1820, four full decades before Fort Sumter.

It’s a state that produced eight presidents, more than any other, including Ulysses S. Grant, who led the Union to victory in the Civil War… Not to mention Grant’s sword cutting through the south, William Tecumseh Sherman. From the Wright brothers, John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, Jack Nicklaus, Paul Newman and Steven Spielberg to Gloria Steinem, Toni Morrison, Harriet Beecher Stowe and Annie Oakley… Do you think this state produces people who sit back and bite the hook of Paul Finebaum and that damn Dabo Swinney!

It’s proud, pure and simple. There’s something in this country that’s going to be part of who you are, so you’ll love it and defend it if you feel it’s not respected outside of Ohio, says Alex Hastie, a Columbus lawyer, producer and host of the Ohio V podcast. World history.

How deep are the roots of the Hasty Buckeyes? Her great uncle, Wilmer Isabel, scored on the 14th. October 1922: The very first touchdown at Ohio Stadium.

I think Ohio is unique among what some people call Flyover Country because of the people who come from here and all the things this state has brought to the world. And it’s been a long time, Hastie explains. It was the original California. People settled there when they moved to other cities in the region. How can you..: Okay, Jebediah, time to go west. But he said: No, you know what? I’m fine here. There’s something about this place. It’s the root of what I consider to be a real source of pride. That’s where this wagon circle you’re talking about comes from.

Fault! The file name is not specified. Ohio state pride runs in the veins of Ohio state fans, here seen as Buckeye fans waving the state flag after a big victory in 2019, picture : Scott W. Grey/Wire Icon

Ohio W. Peace isn’t just a podcast title. It is a phrase that has been worn defiantly on clothing and waving flags all over Buckeye State for years. The phrase itself has been around for years, but it became nationally known when a couple of Ohio state fans (and future clothing retailers) wore it on their sweatshirts at Sugar Bowl 2015, when OSU defeated the top-ranked Alabama in the heart of the Deep South. It was the Buckeyes’ first victory on the tide in four attempts and allowed them to play for the CFP title in their first game, where they won their first national championship in 10 years.

We weren’t respected in the Alabama game, and we weren’t respected in the championship game against Oregon, reminded Ezekiel Elliott earlier this year that the Ducks, like the Tide, were the favourites for touchbacks.

We didn’t have to look for disrespect – it was there. You want to motivate the state of Ohio? That’s the way to do it.

More than half a decade later, Elliot’s voice is still high-pitched when he talks about it. The same goes for all members of the Ohio state team, the 131, whether they have won a championship or not. This same advantage is increasingly present in the tone of this year’s Buckeyes as the competition with Clemson gets closer. Also this week offensive lineman Wyatt Davis said that we are entering a game that has no respect.

Are these claims of general disrespect for the Buckeyes true? Maybe. Or maybe not. The truth of the case in question is that the truth of the case is irrelevant. It is important to note that the convenience lies in simply asking the question.

Call it disrespect. Call the bulletin board material. You can call it whatever you want. In Columbus it’s called fuel. And that fuel has served them well in the horseshoe and everywhere else since the day Jebediah decided to bypass the family cars, plant his flag and stay on the land that became Ohio.

I’m pretty sure that flag points to Ohio V. Peace. And I’m 100% sure he didn’t call his firstborn Dabo.

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