The Best Game Ever

By Johnny Ginter on September 23, 2010 at 4:00p

Hello everyone. It's so nice to see you all. Last week I feel that I was somewhat pessimistic in my recap of the Ohio game, and after some serious soul searching I've come to the conclusion that this is not the kind of writer I want to be. Yes, there are some potential concerns in the running game, and yes, our special teams need work. But on the other hand, the offense was dominant. The defense looked incredible. Football, the greatest sport ever devised by man, was being played in one of the greatest stadiums ever built. It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood.

So in the interest of appreciating the great wide world that surrounds us, today I want to share (and have you share) your favorite memory of a game that meant very little in the grand scheme thing of things, or a game that was not perfect but beautiful nonetheless. The Japanese term for this concept is wabi-sabi, and it is reflected in our hearts and minds every time we watch Ohio State destroy a directional college, an in-state school, or Northwestern. There is beauty in imperfection, and I think during the time between our big out of conference game and the start of Big Ten season we should remember that every game is special, just the way it is.

My own personal Best Game Ever takes us back all the way to September 24th, 2005...

In 2005 I was still an undergrad History major at Ohio State, living in Neilwood Gables on north campus in a fairly comfortable room within spitting distance of the stadium. The night before the 24th it had rained, and there was a cool breeze in the air, making conditions perfect for a noon starting time against the Iowa Hawkeyes. I awoke several hours before the game, went to the commons and made a delicious waffle with a Block O emblazoned in the center, and then strode happily along Lane Avenue, watching all the various and sundry items of interest along the way. A dog eating a hot dog. A man trying to hide a bag of weed, poorly. A child happily kicking an empty can of PBR. The smell of gyros mixing with the smell of roasted peanuts mixing with the smell of cigarette smoke. Citizens of all shapes and sizes staggering out of their homes and domiciles, hungover and smelly, but excited for football and thirsty for more beer.

I took my seat in C Deck in the west side of the stadium, and watched an asskicking of epic proportions unfold before me. Iowa was getting absolutely nothing done offensively as AJ Hawk and company were flying everywhere to the ball. Troy Smith, on the other hand, showed flashes of the brilliance that would eventually carry him to a Heisman, slinging the ball to the then little known Anthony Gonzalez 9 times for 60 yards and running for 127 yards himself. Antonio Pittman had an excellent day as well, running over, around, and through Iowa defenders to the tune of 171 yards.

As the first half ended with OSU up 17-0, I hoped that the game would never have to end. I have never been more relaxed watching a football game, knowing that your team, though not ahead by an enormous margin, was incapable of losing. I leaned back on the bench and looked skyward, ignoring my usual fear that a bird might poop on my face, and closed my eyes, thinking that the FDA should somehow package the 2005 Iowa game in pill form.

The second half continued much the same as the first; Drew Tate, the Iowa QB, was sacked and harried constantly while the Buckeye offense continued to prosper. After a final sack by Bobby Carpenter, a decidedly un-zenlike Tate spiked the ball in frustration, drawing both a penalty flag and a collective U MAD from over 100,000 people. The sky, which had started cloudy, began to open up toward the conclusion of the game, bathing Ohio Stadium in a mid-afternoon autumn light. Finally, sadly, the game was over. Ohio State, 31. Iowa, 6. Ohio State had racked up 530 yards of total offense to Iowa's 137. Drew Tate made me laugh. And best of all, it was only 3:30. Plenty more football to go.

And that is why the Iowa game in 2005 was my Best Game Ever. No medals were awarded, no records were broken. It was just a good old fashioned thrashing on a beautiful day.

This Saturday, the Ohio State Buckeyes will play the Eastern Michigan Eagles. The current line is -44, which might be being generous to the Eagles. But the forecast is 72 degrees and sunny. There will be beer. There will be food. And most importantly, there will be football. I can't wait.

So everyone, I will tell you this: you can have fun on a train. You can have fun in a plane. You can have fun in the rain. You can have fun with a friend, you can have fun for just pretend. You can have fun in your house, in your school or at the mall. But football, yes football, is the most fun of all.

Please share in the comments your own Best Game Ever.


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741's picture

That game is one of my all time favorites as well. I had amazing seats in AA on the 50 yard line (behind the visitors bench) and took great pleasure in seeing Tate receive an all day long ass whooping in 2005, thus rectifying the injustice of my having to see him do that stupid windmill victory dance thing the year before when Iowa beat the tar out of the Buckeyes at Kinnick Stadium.

Sweet, sweet schadenfreude.

bgbuckeye's picture

I hope that sometime down the road, I will be able to look back at the game this coming Saturday as one of "the best games ever" for me. Of course, not because of the opponent at hand, but because it will be my first trip ever to Ohio Stadium, and hopefully the first of many to come.

741's picture

That is a near guarantee. Just don't mess up and arrive late (because you tried to go to Thurman Cafe before the game - go have your celebration burger after the game).

bgbuckeye's picture

I have given up on trying to go to Thurman's before the game! We are just gonna hang out on campus and see what there is to do until game time.

MikeLew's picture

My favorite game in this vein is the 2002 San Jose State game....I woke up very early, worked parking until about 5 minutes before kick-off, made my way into the stadium, and with three of my best friends from high school, watched OSU dominate the Spartans. 

That game featured OSU allowing 0 rushing yards on 13 carries and forcing and recovering fumbles on 4 consecutive drives, winning 50-7 and pushing the Buckeyes to 7-0.  It was so much of a beat down that I got to see one of my former HS teammates, a walk-on named Steve Moore, get some time in the defensive backfield.  Just a great day.


My Best Game Ever was in 1995 vs Illinois @ Home.  It was Cold as hell--sleet, rain, wind, and snow.  Eddie George Racked up 314 yds rushing that Day to go along with double digit yds in receptions and a TD catch.  He had over 400 yds of total offense and was Superman that day.  The Stadium was chanting E D D I E     E D D I E and no one cared how cold it was..... after the game, we went to my friends house in Gahana and celebrated with Steaks and beer!!  I don't think I will ever see a more dominant performance again.

JakeBuckeye's picture

Word around the street is that hell's a pretty warm place, actually.

plooder's picture

My favorite as well.  I took two highschool friends from NY who had never been to a big time college game before.

E-roc's picture

@Johnny - As I recall this was our redemption game to the embarrassing spanking we received in 2004... which made this "Best Game Ever" all the more sweeeeeeeeeeeet..

E-roc's picture

p.s. - I don't think I'll ever attend a game that compares to OSU-scUM 2002. As a 4th year senior, I sat about 30 rows up in what is now a much larger Block-O section. I was fully prepared in several layers of cotton and wool, gloves and a hat, along with a stomach full of five or six Miller Lites. I successfully lost my voice with several minutes remaining before halftime and no adult beverages to sooth my throat. The best I could do in the 2nd half was clap and stomp as loudly as I humanly could with a 180lbs frame.

I remember watching Will Allen in his scarlet #26 uni intercept the ball in the endzone and the chaos that ensued in storming the field.

My best game experience ever.

Normal Buck's picture

Wholeheartedly agree. Oh, this, plus I had just met my future wife the night before.

osujake9's picture

I'm not sure what my "best game ever" is but the most fun I've ever had at a game was the 2005 Texas game. We sat in 5A with a ton of other students and the one clear memory that I have from that game is when AJ Hawk picked off VY. I remember our whole section going insane and after everybody settled down most people (including us) were in a completely different row. It was pretty crazy, if only we had won that game.

tomcollins's picture

My favorite meaningless game was 1999 Iowa.  My dad attended from 1972 to 1975 and was a freshman the same year Archie was one.  In his dorm, they painted an anthropomorphic mural of Archie as a tank running over Wolverines.  I scored an extra student ticket to the game and invited him to come watch with me.  This was right before the stadium reconstruction and they had temporary bleachers where AA deck is now where we had seats.  They were awful seats near the 10 yard line where you had to stand on top of the bleachers just to see over the players on the sideline.  

I believe that was his first game back in the 'Shoe since the 70s.  Little did I know they were retiring Archie's jersey that game.  And while our seats sucked for watching the bloodbath we laid on Iowa, they were perfect for watching Archie Griffin walk by.  We went over to the fence and flagged him down and he talked to my dad for a while talking about their times at Ohio State 3 decades earlier.  While they never met on campus, Archie is such a friendly guy it was like they were roommates.

It was also very lucky my dad was even able to attend.  His father had recently been diagnosed with a non-cancerous brain tumor and was scheduled to have an operation to remove it.  Fortunately the surgery went well and he recovered enough in time of the game for my dad to attend without worry.  After the exchange with Archie, he called my grandfather in the hospital to tell him of his encounter.  Unfortunately between the brain surgery and the morphine, my grandfather was completely out of it.  "Dad, we just talked to Archie Griffin!"  "Who?"  "Archie Griffin, you know who he is, he was the running back when I went to school?"  "I have no idea who you are talking about."  "They retired his jersey today at the game, he's the first one to ever have his jersey retired."  "That's not true!" "What do you mean it's not true?"  "I was watching the game on TV and they retired this guys jersey at halftime there."  "Yes, dad, that's Archie Griffin, the guy who's jersey they retired today."

Script Ohio was moved to after the game (I believe Iowa's band played before the game, and Archie's ceremony was at half time), so we moved to the East stands to get a better view before the game ended.    I saw a little tear roll down his eye as they dotted the eye.

francosutrack's picture

Texas in '06 or Iowa in that same year. It was just a good old fashioned beat down and those teams were running on all cylinders. Troy Smith played well and Gonzo even had the across the field cut back TD with the sick block someone laid at the end...Can't remember who.

SuperBuckFan08's picture

That would be Brian Hartline who clobbered not one but TWO Hawkeye defenders that cleared the way for Gonzo to hop into the endzone.

Because I couldn't go for three.   -Woody-

btalbert25's picture

My favorite game of all time was the first Notre Dame beat down back in the 90's.  That was the game that I fell in love with the Ohio State University.  I'm not an Ohio Kid, so I wasn't born to love the Buckeyes, it was certainly a learned behavior.  Going to a catholic school, I hated Notre Dame, as everyone else loved them.   IWhen I watched that beat down, I said, this is my team. 

My second favorite game only was the one against UC in Paul Brown Stadium.  The game itself actually was awful as I thought it was going to be a terrible upset.  But it was the first Ohio State game I ever watched in person.  I remember these guys behind me being all pissed off about the game.  I said guys, all they have to do is keep winning Oklahoma had some battles and they still won it all.  These guys were all drunk and started screaming National Champs, National Champs......  Who would've guessed my prediction would've been correct.

Buckeye 09's picture

My greatest game would have to be the 2006 game against scUM. We had decent seats in the south stands & it seemed like it was a totally different atmosphere than a normal gameday. I have been fortunate enough to go to some important games at Ohio Stadium, but nothing compared to the atmosphere that day.  I’ll never forgot running on to the field after that game & carrying as much grass off the field (the last game with real grass in the stadium) & carrying it back to my apartment.

Ian_InsideTheShoe's picture

My greatest game was 2004, when we upset Michigan and Ted Ginn ran wild, with the help of Troy Smith.

Mostly this is because the whole game I was puking my brains out (I had caught a virus) and was still watching from the toilet. May sound like it wasn't the greatest, but if that doesn't show true fandom, I don't know what does.

Brady's picture

Favorite game I attended was probably against Minnesota during the title year.  It was the day after Chris Vance's brother was killed and he had a solid afternoon and scored at least one touchdown.  It was a big game at the time as I think we were both ranked in the top 10 or close to it (in Minnesota's case).  I just remember thinking how hard it must have been for him to suit up barely 24 hours after the tragic murder of his brother.  Not only did he suit up, he thrashed the Minnesota defense.  Great moment under the cirumstances.


M Man's picture

My own Best Game Ever in Ohio Stadium:  Woody's last game in Ohio Stadium.  1978.  Final score 3-14.  A particularly gorgeous day; low fifties, gray, overcast.

Actually, my favorite OSU game is less inflammatory.  And it wasn't even in Ohio Stadium.  It was the 2008 night game between the Buckeyes and Wisconsin at Camp Randall.  I attended in my capacity as Neutral Observer.  After a close first half featuring a tentative freshman Terrelle Pryor, the Buckeyes turned it on against what had been suspected to be a high quality Badger squad.  After the third quarter, when the Sconnie students do Jump Around, the Buckeye sideline, led by Malcolm Jenkins, started their own Jump Around.  The game was 10-10 at that point.  But after Jump Around Featuring Malcolm Jenkins, the Buckeyes basically owned Camp Randall, and came away 20-17 winners:

It would have been one of the great away-game performances in the Big Ten in this young century, but for Michigan's epic, mystical 31-point 4th quarter finish to beat Minnesota in 2003:

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

this was a absolutely awesome game based on the gameplay and being at Camp R. i remember being in some random Virginia Tech party on a road trip weekend and forcing the tv to be on in the living room of a full party going on

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

RoweTrain's picture

Great story about that game and I also agree that the game was definitely one of the best Saturdays to be a Buckeye fan.


Off topic a little bit but I received my Rah Rag that I won from last weekend and I just found it funny when I opened the box and not only discovered the rag, but also an unopened, mint conditioned package of New Kids On The Block trading cards.  Thank you whoever put those in there, made my day! (Disclaimer: I do not like the nkotb but I did have a good laugh over it.)  Go Bucks! 

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

VBBuckeye's picture

Homage does that. They put TMNT cards in one of my orders and a pack of NKOTB cards in my most recent one! They also put an Ohio State button pin in there this time. Awesome!

RoweTrain's picture

I got a pin as well which was cool I just couldn't get over the cards. TMNT you say? Damn looks like I'm going to have to order something else because I want a back of those haha.

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

BuckeyeSki's picture

Comedy gold right there

Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

RoweTrain's picture

Gold Jerry, gold!!

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

NW Buckeye's picture

2002 - The Game.  Michigan had pretty much owned us in the 90's and there really wasn't much hype before the season bagan.  When we recieved our 2 season tickets in the mail I managed to talk my brother out of his 4 tickets for the UM game (a decision he later regretted) and planned a trip back to The Shoe for my family (we live in Seattle).   The kids had not been to a game in Columbus since they were young, and I figured it might be a good time to show them what football was all about.  The west coast just does not have an avid college football fan base. 

We arrived in Columbus Friday evening.  As you can imagine the enire town was hopping by that time.  OSU was riding an undefeated season, only Michigan stood in the way of a perfect season and a trip to Tempe for the BCS.  I don't really remember the weather, we were so intent on just seeing the game that everything else was kind of a fog.  However, my kids (25, 22 and 21) were in awe as we drove to the campus at 6:30 a.m. for the game.  Scarlet and gray everywhere, people screaming.  Our pregame haunt is BW3 and they were still in their old location on high street.  By the time we got there the place was packed, but fortunately we had seats saved for us.  We consumed the usual amount of wings and beer, just enough to be happy.  We left early (10 am) for the game so we could walk the kids across the oval, but not before I stood on a table and led a chorus of "I Don't Give A Damn" with the entire bar joining in. 

It was a beautiful fall day for the walk to the stadium.  We joined several of our friends at a tail gate just outside the stadium and then hustled inside so we could be in our seats an hour before the game.  Our tickets are in D Deck (right underneath the press box) and located about the 45 yard line.  Absolutely my favorite place to sit in the entire stadium.  From there we could see the whole stadium fill up.  Once the stadium was full I had the family walk to the outside rail to take a look outside the stadium.  There were easily more people outside than inside.  My kids all agreed that it was staggering. 

Everyone knows about the game.  OSU scored in the last quarter to take a 14-9 lead and scUM just did not have enough to muster any last second miracle, though they kept us in our seats until the last play - an overthrown deep pass that was intercepted in the endzone by Will Allen. 

We stayed to sing Carmen Ohio with the team then proceeded to the exit to join in the revelry outside the stadium.  We had to travel to Cleveland after the game to go and celebrate Thanksgiving early with my parents (as it turned out, the last time we would be able to enjoy a holiday meal with them).  The drive up I-71 was nuts.  Nothing but Buckeye fans all over the place.  Once we reached Cleveland we stopped for a quick bite, and eveyone in the restaurant was in scarlet and gray.  My kids were again staggered.  150 miles off campus, and everyone was still pumped.  One patron asked my son what time it was, and when he replied 10:30 the immediate chorus that followed was "AND MICHIGAN STILL SUCKS".  A perfect end to a perfect day. 

Nothing like that ever happens on the west coast.  We attend PAC 10 games occaissionally, and you can drive 3 miles from campus after the game and never see anyone in school colors.  I have to laugh when I read comments about THE GAME not being the biggest rivalry in sports.  Anyone who says that has not witnessed anything like what we saw that November 23, 2002...... 

BuckeyeSki's picture

Two weeks ago, Ohio St v. Miami

It was my first game in attendance at the Shoe, the 11W Tailgate was great (thanks again guys) and the game was an ass-kicking 8 years in the making. This game will always have sentimental value.

However, if we are going to stick with our favorite games, Im gonna have to go with 06 scUM (no explanation needed, best CFB game ever) or 2005 Sparty, of Jon L. Smith meltdown fame. I remember that game starting slow, and I was home for once, but that blocked FG before half returned for a TD, completely changed the game and my mood on the day. What a game that was. Youboty for the win

Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

KenK's picture

I'm going with the 1968 OSU-Purdue game; this would have been my senior year in H.S. Purdue came into the game highly ranked, thanks to Mike Phipps and LeRoy Keys, while OSU played a sophmore heavy lineup. Although the score was only 13-0, Ohio State dominated play and sent a message that this particular team was pretty special. 

Johnny Hooker: "He's not as tough as he thinks". Henry Gondorff: "Neither are we".

NW Buckeye's picture

I was at that game as well.  One awesome performance by the super sophs!

Dethsyth47's picture

My best game ever was the '02 Buckeyes-Bearcats game at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati. My cousin was going to UC at the time and managed to score me an extra ticket. I was the only Ohio State fan in my section and the whole game I was ribbed and harrassed by UC fans. It didnt help that it took till the fourth quarter for us to seal it away but when the great Will Allen came down with that interception in the end zone with 32 seconds left to go in fourth my whole section except me just fell silent. It was awesome. Up until that game I always kinda pulled for UC except for when they played the Buckeyes but the way those fans were just spewing hate for Ohio State and they're recent ass hat attitude last season just made me really really dislike them.

robert goulet's picture

Too easy to pick a UM game or an important win -

In the vein of games that seemed meaningful at the time but ultimately meant nothing, I have to go with the similar 1999 beatdown of UCLA.  A night game against a classic Pac 10 foe that was 1 game away from the MNC game the season before, OSU was #13 and UCLA was #14.  The final was 42-20 and it wasn't even that close.  We were back on the road to the top 10 and found a QB to replace Joe Germaine in the process.  But it was all down hill from there for the 1999 season and the Steve Bellisari era. 

woodward.72's picture

My favorite memory of a game that meant very little in the grand scheme thing of things might be the season opener against Northern Illinois in 2006.

My first season as a Buckeye fan was 1994, when I was 9 years old, so my fist 5 years of fanhood were blessed with amazingly talented and potent offenses that had no problem putting inferior opponents' throats under its foot. After 1998, those days seemed to disappear. Despite there being some great seasons between 1998 and 2006, the absence of a complete and dominant offense made football Saturdays much more stressful than what I was used to from childhood.

The 3 incredibly easy looking touchdown passes in the first quarter against Northern Illinois in 2006 signaled to me that for that season at least, the lackluster passing game, close games against unworthy competition, and slow starts to a season were gone. That season was so stress free. It was so wonderful until, well, nevermind. I think 2010 might be the first such season since 2006. I hope nothing spoils it this time.

Buckeyeboy's picture

I love my fellow Buckyeye fans, BUT, how can you consider ANY Big Ten game as something meaningless? Just wondering.

Go Bucks!

blazers34's picture

Lou Holtz just said that Miami outplayed OSU.  Im about to lose it. What a dumbass

RoweTrain's picture

I saw that too.  I was like "What?!!?!?."  That and Jesse Palmer said that two of the interceptions by Jafoury H4arris (thanks SBB) weren't his fault.  I can think of one that I might say wasn't his and that's the one Chim stole from Benjamin.  The one by Nasty Nate was because of a great play by CJ, the one he threw directly to Chim was because Benjamin wasn't looking but he double clutched and saw that he wasn't looking and the one by Beast Mode (Killa Cam) was another great play.  IMO whenever a ball isn't tipped directly up in the air at the line of scrimmage then it's always the qb's fault.  Nature of the beast.

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

Poe McKnoe's picture

Exactly.  Harris would have been awesome had there not been a defense.

RoweTrain's picture

Yup I agree and I am also wondering who Palmer (or Holtz and May for that matter) will blame the INT on that he just threw against Pitt.  The defensive back for actually being in position to catch it unlike Benjamin?

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

KCAlum's picture

Holtz needs to go to the retirement home. Maybe he can room with Beano Cook

Dethsyth47's picture

This commentary during the game you would think Miami beat us by 20 points

blazers34's picture

Harris is like that shiny toy you had as a kid.  Shiny, new awesome, but it never seemed to work right when your buddies came over.


The dude makes some GREAT throws, but he is so careless with the ball that its appalling.

VBBuckeye's picture

So NOW they call the block in the back against Miami!

RoweTrain's picture

I said the same thing!

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

RoweTrain's picture

As much as I'd like to see Miami play terrible I still want them to win for the obvious reason that if they come out and have a great season it will make the Buckeyes look better.  But you know that we still won't get any respect from [nickname temporarily redacted].

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

Dethsyth47's picture

No matter what happens we won't get respect. If we win the NC and beat and SEC team by 20 points or 1 to win the NC they'll just say it was a down year for the SEC.

KCAlum's picture

The game that at the time seemed like a huge deal, but turned out not to mean that much, but was awesome when it happened was the incredible comeback to beat LSU in 1988. I was screaming at the top of my lungs and was hoarse for a month after that one, in what ended up being the worst season OSU has had in my lifetime.

osujake9's picture

Jacory is so stupid.

RoweTrain's picture

Wow great pick by the Pitt safety.  Obviously it wasn't H4rris' fault because the safety tipped it to himself and he hadn't anticipated that when he threw it.

"Just bow up and go out and play." ~ D. Lee

"As it stands right now, I know I am the best athlete in college football." ~ B. Miller

Dethsyth47's picture

Surprise surprise ESECPN talking up an big weekend in the SEC

JakeBuckeye's picture

Well...It is a huge weekend in the SEC. Sorry to break this to you.

Shun me for it, but other than the Ohio State game (of course), the thing I'm most excited for this weekend is seeing 'Bama lose and watching if the Ole Ball Coach actually has a contender this year.

Dethsyth47's picture

True you do make a good point there it just seems like thats all ESPN can ever talk about ever.

cyt_buck's picture

On the bright side the Canes defense is completely dominating, especially the D line...just makes our offense and our O line appear that much better

JakeBuckeye's picture

Could we please stop calling ESPN "eSECpn".

Not only is it terribly unclever, it kind of reminds me of high school kids coming up with juvenile nicknames in attempts of talking trash with each other about college football teams.

cyt_buck's picture's a lil clever, just over used

Dethsyth47's picture

I take it back. They dont want us to watch SEC football this saturday. They want us to see the new Wall Street movie this weekend

VBBuckeye's picture

Another block in the back!

Jack Fu's picture

A.) Believe it or not, but Tate did not get penalized for his spike in the '05 game. It's one of the most inexplicable things I've ever seen, but hilariously, satisfyingly so. I think the officials felt sorry for him, to be perfectly honest.

B.) My five best games attended, in order:

5.  OSU at Michigan State, 2004 - Ted Ginn's coming out party. Three TD's, one receiving, one rushing, one on a punt return.

4. Penn State at Ohio State, 2002 - My senior year. Tense, defensive struggle, decided by a Gamble pick-6 in the second half. Unsung hero: Andy Groom, who booted consecutive 60+-yard punts fron inside the OSU 10-yard-line in the 4th quarter. Absurdly tense.

3.) OSU at Michigan, 2001 - Tressel said we'd be proud of the boys in Ann Arbor. He was right.

2.) Michigan at OSU, 2002 - Probably more tense than the Penn State game. Crowd alternated between inconceivably loud and silent with terror. As an avid EA NCAA Footall fan, on the winning touchdown I jumped up and shouted "you know I love the option," in the process knocking my future and current wife down two rows of bleachers. I regret nothing.

1.) OSU at Purdue.   Obvs.

Johnny Ginter's picture

coulda SWORN he got a flag for that, weird

osujake9's picture

yeah I was at the game and I coulda SWORN he did too

robert goulet's picture

He was:

"On those two possessions, the Hawkeyes drove to first downs at the Ohio State 23 and 8 but each time Tate was sacked. After he was tackled by Buckeyes linebacker Bobby Carpenter, Tate spiked the ball in frustration and was assessed a penalty."

osujake9's picture

just checked out the link and in the game stats it had Iowa with only 2 penalties for 10 yards. If that's the case then there def. was no 15 yd penalty enforced

741's picture

I don't specifically recall the penalty assessed (or not assessed) but I am thinking a "delay of game" penalty may have been assessed (5yds).

Jason Priestas's picture

Hmm.  Guess we should start putting up Thursday night open threads.

osujake9's picture

apparently you just made it awkward for people to post....way to go! haha

Jason Priestas's picture

Hilarious. I kind of had the same impression, thinking I shouldn't comment for a couple of days.

NW Buckeye's picture

Harris will never make it through the season. 

osujake9's picture

I was thinking the same thing

buckeye56's picture

My best game ever was Ohio State vs. Indiana 1993.   I was 12 years old and my Dads job had moved us to Dallas in March of 93.  My Dad had always had season tickets and in the early 90's I was old enough to start going to more games and gain a true appreciation of the experience.  Having lived my whole life in Ohio moving halfway across the country was unimaginable, so Mom and dad were quick to placate me by promising me we would come back for at least 1 game a year.  Well the first time we came back was for the IU game in 93.  We flew back early on friday morning and made sure to go every place we used to frequent. Haircuts at Tecks Barber Shop (R.I.P John), dinner at Schmidts when there was still the one on Henderson, etc.  I dont remember a ton about the game other than IU kept it closer than predicted and Jayson Gwinn had a coming out party of sorts before being killed in a traffic accident weeks later.  But honestly the game its self was unimportant, what made it my best game ever was being back home again with my dad.  We eventually moved back to Columbus in '97 and we havn't missed a game since.

btalbert25's picture

Yeah with all the ranked SEC matchups this weekend it is a big conference weekend.  I'll bet anything that South Carolina is not for real.  Just a couple of years ago the made it to a top 10 ranking then wound up with 3 or 4 losses.  It happens every year with them.  Of course then we'll have a fair Auburn team closing in on the top 10.  I really don't think Arkansas will beat Alabama.  I'm still not sold on them yet.  Good offense, but that's Petrino teams.  I'm not sure they have the D to keep Bama from grinding the game clock with their great RBs. 

Perhaps the game I am interested in is Oregon and ASU.  Im interested to see if Oregon is that crazy awesome or if ASU's D can slow them down a bit. 

JakeBuckeye's picture

Either A) Randy Shannon is an idiot, or B) Randy Shannon is desperate for a long-term injury to Jacory Harris.

I thank God every day that Jim Tressel is Ohio State's football coach.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Why and how does Dave Wandstat (sp) still have a job?!

"2014 National with it!!!"

Jason Priestas's picture

Eh.  In that weak league, he'll finish 8-4 or 9-3 even, which is about as much as Pitt has hoped for in the past 30 years.

plooder's picture

My first was my favorite.  In September 1994 I was a newly minted freshman from upstate NY who had never cared about college football before.  I had student "field" seats which were 8 rows of bleacher seating on the track that used to surround the playing field before the stadium was renovated.  By that time I was a veteran of attending NFL games, having had season tickets for my favorite team for 2 years.  Nothing could have prepared me for what I experienced that day.  I took my "seat" standing on the front row of the bleachers behind the Buckeye bench.  My section was at the 50, so the gatorade tanks on the sidelines obstructed my view.  Further obstruction came from a back-up offensive tackle named Orlando Pace who stood directly in front of those Gatorade tanks all day (and all season for that matter).  When the defense was on the field Orlando's buddy, the starting left tackle Cory Stringer, would join him in obstructing my view.  None of that mattered.  That day I was introduced to the pagentry and tradition of Ohio State football during a 52-0 win.  My life and my football loyalties changed that day; and that is why it was my favorite inconsequential game.

J.Mo's picture

My favorite games I've attended in order...

5. 2002 Ohio State vs. Michigan
I don't think I really need to explain this one...

4. 2007 Ohio State at Penn State
Going into the White Out. First game back at Penn State since the disappointing loss in 2005. PSU fans acting like dicks, throwing shit at us. It was just great going in there, kicking their ass, and listening to them cry on talk radio leaving while in traffic trying to get the hell out of State College.

3. 2007 Ohio State at Michigan
Revenge from Mike Hart running his mouth about the previous year team's defense, Michigan expecting this is the year they win. Having hated Jake Long, Chad Henne, and Mike Hart so much and seeing them finish 0-4 against Ohio State. Also great to send Lloyd away on a loss and piss off Michigan fans by being one of two lone Buckeyes in the section.

2. 2010 Ohio State vs. Oregon in the Rose Bowl
Yeah it's recent but it's the freaking Rose Bowl. Was surrounded by Oregon fans and they were talking shit before the game. Great experience.

1. 2006 Ohio State vs. Michigan
#1 vs. #2, the death of Bo the day before, was in my senior (5th) year. It was unbelievable. I never screamed as loud and that long before that day. Whenever we scored or got the big hit, I was going nuts with the rest of the stands... hugging each other, high fiving each other, etc.

Pam's picture

My first. 1968 MSU vs tOSU, in the 'Shoe.  I went with my dad who  got tickets from the Golden Bear (they sometimes golfed together at the SCC).  The Buckeyes were 10-0 and went on to beat OJ in the Rose Bowl.  Rex Kern is still one of my favorite QB's

Ian_InsideTheShoe's picture

You are my many connections with Buckeye folk!

BED's picture

Best game I've ever attended: has to be 2006 scUM 1 vs. 2 match-up.  The shear thrill of the million ups and downs during that game, combined with the company of my roommates of 5 years and my dad sitting in 15AA in the 7th row.  I can die happy knowing I was present for that win.


The most fun I've had at a game: 2008 scUM where evil Jim Tressel hung 42 points on DickRod.  My favorite memory was sitting in North stands when the scUM kicker got in TBDBITL's way during his halftime practice (since he'd already shanked at least one kick by that point).  We started booing him and waiving towels, making noise, etc.  The whole crowd went nuts cheering when he missed practice kicks.  When Pettrey came out and started kicking there, we got silent, then cheered when he made it.  We got in that kicker's head, and it was glorious.

The Ohio State University, College of Arts & Sciences, Class of 2006
The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Class of 2009

azbuckeye's picture

Best 'Shoe experience: 1984 -- Keith Byars throws a shoe, rumbling for 5 touchdowns -- that place was shaking at the end of the first half! 

RBuck's picture

Has to be the 1968 scUM game. Didn't have tickets but was tooling around campus in my '65 Mustang ragtop (with the bumper sticker "On the Grass We'll Kick Their Ass") with a hot redhead listening to it on radio. That night I went for 2 and made it. Would have went for 3 but she wouldn't let me.

Not too long after that the redhead dumped me and my car was stolen. But that's OK, 50-14. 

Long live the southend.

rudyclanton's picture

This has to be one of the greatest things I have seen. You got to be so ridiculously over the top while giving those kids a story to tell for the rest of their lives. Absolutely amazing no matter how you look at it. Thanks for a great great read yet again.