Ohio State Requiring Wristbands, Other Restrictions on Mirror Lake Jump

By DJ Byrnes on November 24, 2013 at 11:05a

In a release to students, Ohio State had this to say:

We are aware that some of you may be planning to jump into Mirror Lake that evening. We do not encourage you to jump, especially due to the extreme cold temperatures that are expected. However, the wellbeing of Ohio State students is our top priority and we will take efforts to make sure this activity is managed in a way that maintains appropriate levels of safety and security. If you do choose to jump, please keep the following in mind:

- Alcohol significantly affects judgment and reaction and accelerates the effects of hypothermia.  I suggest that you do not drink.

- Mirror Lake is as deep as 8-feet in some areas, so take special care to stay within the designated jump area.

- Use the buddy system, and make a plan for arriving and walking home in a group.

In an effort to best ensure that Mirror Lake is a safe feature on our campus, we will add a number of enhanced safety and security measures for this activity.  Access will be granted to those with Beat Michigan wrist bands (available at the Ohio Union as detailed above) beginning at 6:30 p.m. through one designated entry point and there will be several exit points.  Wrist bands are needed even for those who are only watching.  Students who are incapacitated and unable to care for themselves may not be granted entry.

Well, this just sucks all around. However, from a liability standpoint, it is probably a wise move by university elders. Still: if you're jumping into a lake in sub-zero temperatures. Here's The Lantern with further details:

The wristbands will be given out at the Ohio Union from Sunday at 11 a.m. until Tuesday and students must have a BuckID to receive one.

The wristbands also give students access to free food at the Beat Michigan festival Tuesday on the South Oval, which will have activities including a zip line and an interactive graffiti mural.

The message said that while free food will be available to the first 4,000 attendees, for “access to food (students) must pick up a Beat Michigan wrist band.”

What are alums who merely enjoy the revelry at Mirror Lake to do? It's unknown at this time. Will be interesting to see how this all unfolds.


Comments Show All Comments

NoVA Buckeye's picture

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

painterlad's picture

Wait...alcohol affects judgment? Damn, Kalis must have been fall down drunk when he picked Michigan over The Ohio State University. I appreciate OSU making it a student-only activity. Who wants to see some fat, bald 48 year-old strip down to his shorts and make a fool of himself? (Looks into mirror and sighs.)

To err is human. Really sucking requires having yellow stripes on your helmet.

BuckeyeAtHeart22's picture

Who is kalis and what is this alcohol?  Is it a psychoactive intoxicant of some kind?
In my parts we only do Bath Salts and 2cB to get a buzz.

Ohio1St81's picture

I can't say I disagree with this. The University might not have officially sanctioned the event, but they tacitly allowed it to take place on state property. Every year I jumped, I always ended up back home that night wondering, only 95% sarcastically, if some particularly drunk person I had seen ended up surviving the night. The last thing we need is outrage against Ohio State's negligence, whether this is actually the case or not. There are going to be a lot of people upset by this but I think it's important to keep in mind people's safety, and on a larger scale the university's best interests. Imagine the public records colonoscopy (and subsequent state lawsuits) into OSU's knowledge of the danger while still allowing it to go on. 
I for one always took it as a personal challenge to jump stone sober, except for the time I jumped in during May after our senior bar crawl, when I was the opposite of that. 

11W User Map: https://goo.gl/mxUeyX


LILBUCKEYE's picture

It's going to make it less safe though. Having 20000 people some of whom are drunk waiting in one line is not going to happen in an orderly manner  people are going to stampede, cut the line and knock over fences. Also no one is going to want to wait on the line for long periods of time  

The Ohio State University '17

DeuceOSU78's picture

I hate to be the old fuddy duddy, but if anyone wants a history lesson, follow this link to the Texas A&M Bonfire Tragedy.  It's all fun and games until someone gets hurt.  The girl in '85 that broke her neck or the numerous others who have drowned or been hurt probably never dreamt that something would happen.


BenW's picture

The bigger point is: how does any of this make the jump safer?

Bucksfan's picture

I'm not surprised.  It causes 20,000 dollars in damages to the South Oval every year, and a couple dozen students end up in the ER, either from exposure or from slipping in the mud.  So, before some douche drinks too many Yagerbombs and dies, it's probably a good idea for the University to step in a bit.  After all, it's illegal for the Band to show up, so maybe eventually they'll be allowed.

OhioKris's picture

oh no... not $20,000. 
gimmie a break.
that's like one semester for one student. 

TheBadOwl's picture

I'm not jumping this year, but I'm definitely getting my wristband and selling it. Thanks, OSU!

When I walked in this morning and saw the flag was at half mast I thought, "Alright, another bureaucrat ate it." but then I saw it was Li'l Sebastian. Half mast is too high. Show some damn respect.

Urban Nation Army's picture

Damaged or taped wristbands won't be allowed in

Bet you can't say "Bert Bielma is a bumbling buffoon" five times fast.

N8thegr8's picture

This is a bit ridiculous to me, honestly. I'm all for safety and whatnot but just have the EMT's off to the side just in case like they have in years past. All this nonsense of wristbands needed, designated entrance and exit points... It's overkill. This is an amazing tradition that everyone who attends OSU needs to do at least once and the administration is going to kill it off. At the very leasst get rid of the whole need for a wrist band. That's dumb as hell. It's like you need to pre-register to jump in a damn lake. And if they are only giving out 4,000 of them what happens when they run out? You turn away the drunk 18yo's at the newly designated entrance only gate? Yeah. That will turn out fantastic. 

"Play for Ohio State or get beat by Ohio State. That simple." - Kirk Barton 

Buckeye in Illini country's picture

There will be more than 4000 wristbands. If you read it correctly, free food will be available to the first 4000. 

Columbus to Pasadena: 35 hours.  "We're on a road trip through the desert looking for strippers and cocaine... and Rose Bowl wins!"

northcampus's picture

 Taking it a step further, the university may seem more interested in exclusivity than safety by only including current students (what if a family currently has kids at OSU and Capital who both want to participate in something that may be a longstanding family tradition?).  I know some OSU students/grads may disagree, but alienating those without 'official' ties to the university is not always the best decision.
Before too long, they'll sell the the marketing rights to Speedo.  Or, implement dynamic pricing to purchase the wristbands.

40 Degrees North's picture

Nice to see the lawyers getting involved here. Is something else related to Gameday next? 

Buckeye1996's picture

What are Yagerbombs? 
I may be a bit old for this stuff at this point in my life, but I still like to stay informed just in case :)

OSUStu's picture

Jägerbombs are a mixture of Jägermeister and Red Bull taken as a shot.  Yeagerbombs are a similar drink created by this man:

If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.  ~ Bruce Lee

Bucksfan's picture

Also a famous Yager-bomb:

OurHonorDefend09's picture

Assuming you're serious, which I can't tell, they're shots of jager mixed with red bull. 
As a recent alumni, I'm really ticked about this. Mirror Lake Jumps were four of the most fun nights I had at OSU and it's a shame they have to regulate it, even though they claim it is "unsanctioned." Make up your damn minds about it and take responsibility for the event if you're going to attempt to control it.

Don't give up... Don't ever give up.

Buckeye1996's picture

I was serious. I prefer less liquid, more impact...lol.
A couple of shots of really good Tequila sets me right. Leaves room in the gut for important stuff like food, and you don't have to live in the bathroom all night.. :)
Never jumped into the lake while at OSU, but I can understand the concern for safety. The world has moved on, and I can fully resonate with the University's fear of bad publicity and/or lawsuits.

buckeyedude's picture

Just stay away from them. They'll get you arrested.
Jagerbombs = evil.



el duderino's picture

Makes me glad I graduated already. Just like many things on campus, this has gone downhill quickly in the past few years.  Semesters, "blocks" (who thought swipes needed a name change??), no parking on 12th, no access to Curl Drive, Senior Crawl being on a Tuesday (the middle of the week? Really?), and now wristbands and fences for the Mirror Lake Jump. Dumb dumb dumb.
Don't fix what's not broken. /rant

"This is a very complicated case: a lot of ins, lot of outs, lot of what-have-yous."

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

Exactly.  OSU is turning into a nursery.  Let the students make their own decisions.  They're adults.

I like the bux.

gravey's picture

I'm surprised it took this long.  This thing screamed for a lawsuit years ago ('85?) when a girl broke her neck diving...and not understanding how shallow it was.  I'm surprised there's not an 8 foot barbed wire fence around the entire perimeter.

William's picture

Wait, so the chick should have sued the university for diving head first into a pond? Seems logical. 

Johnny Ginter's picture

honestly ive been bracing myself for the day someone dies doing the jump, and considering how cold its been lately iiiii have trouble feigning outrage over this

DJ Byrnes's picture

My friend got so hammered on Lady Bligh one Mirror Lake night, he got lost on the way to the Lake, ended up at some rando house party, puked in their living room, got kicked out and passed out against a dumpster. Had he not been found, he would have died within 20 minutes according to the ER people.

Californian by birth, Marionaire by the Grace of President Warren G. Harding.

216ToThe614's picture

This is why I'm upset, because putting up fences and entrance points would not prevent things like this from happening. All they are doing is ruining something great and unique that this university has. People are going to drink, people are going to jump in a lake, regardless of what they do to prevent it. Having EMT's nearby like they always have is the best course of action without affecting what happens regardless of what they do

Pick up your feet, turn your corners square! And DRIVE DRIVE DRIVE!!!

roamingbuckeye's picture

I dont have an official source for this other that a friend who was on campus over the summer but apparently someone drowned in Mirror Lake in August, giving them more justification/motivation for trying to restrict the event. However, depending on how they are planning to fence off the area and enforce the official entrance, it could prove to be very ineffective. I cant image many would have a problem hopping temporary fences or tramping through shrubbery to get to Mirror Lake. 

"I just cant wait to play football." -UFM

ohst8buxCP's picture

Everyone i've talked to is refusing to get the wristband on principle.

William's picture

Heaven forbid people be held accountable for their own actions. More pointless nannying. 

brandonbauer87's picture

I don't really care for the idea. Safety is one thing, exclusivity is another. I was never a student, but I jumped three years ago with some friends that were students. There were adults there. Full grown, job-having adults. I heard numerous stories from people that jumped in their college days and came back to do it again. This keeps adults out and makes sure to allow in only students. I'm not sure that's a good thing. 

Buckeyeneer's picture

My sister-in-law works in the OSU ER and says that Mirror Lake night is one of the worst nights of the year to work. She said that there are usually at least 30 students who end up in the ER every year due to that event.

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes

THE Ohio State University

UrbanCulture's picture

Well I have to drive home that night so if I was going to jump, I would have been sober as fuck. This helped me decide not to jump, as I believe some students could be really stupid and try to tear down the fences or something

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

Ohio State is so soft.  They are doing literally everything they can to baby the students.  If a kid drinks too much and jumps in the lake and he gets hurt, it's his fault.  I've jumped in 4 times, barely remembering some of the night every time.  I don't care.  It's an awesome time.  I have friends coming in from another school because they want to see it.  But now they can't?  C'mon OSU.  If it's not university sanctioned, you can't regulate it.

I like the bux.

BenW's picture

Obviously this can be dangerous, so I don't have any problem with people being there to help people be safe, but how does wristbands make anything safer? It just makes sure that it's only current students jumping.

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

Another valid point.  It'll create a HUGE traffic jam, causing the students who are jumping to be outside even longer as opposed to running to the lake, jumping in, and running home.  That takes 20-30 minutes.  Waiting in line at 11 will take forever and it would make students stand outside in 25 degree weather with no clothes on for an extrememly long time.

I like the bux.

William's picture

I wouldn't be surprised if quite a few students choose to jump Monday night instead of Tuesday now. 

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

I doubt students will do that.

I like the bux.

cbusbuckeye's picture

A lot of people are planning on it

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

That's just dumb though.  It's actually illegal doing it then.
Plus why would you jump when there aren't thousands of students there?

I like the bux.

cbusbuckeye's picture

You realize it's illegal all the time right? The only reason it moved from Thursday to Tuesday 2 years ago was because a bunch of people put together a Facebook event and organized it as such...if 10,000 people change their minds  and decide to go tomorrow night it will be just as much fun as usual. 

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

Well yeah I know it's technically illegal all the time.  I'm just saying they'd be more likely to make an arrest or fine you or something if you jumped in on Monday as opposed to the "scheduled" date.
And you do know that it wasn't moved from Thursday to Tuesday because of a Facebook event right?  The UM game was pushed back a week so it would fall on Thanksgiving.  Tuesday is the only possible day for students to jump in.

I like the bux.

cbusbuckeye's picture

Monday would work  so would Wednesday. The day is arbitrary, and wasn't mandated by the university, that's my point. Students realized Tuesday worked best and chose it as such. Dr J and her goon squad didn't dictate Tuesday as the day. 

NoVA Buckeye's picture

They should jump on Thursday night, the day it was intended to in the first place!

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

el duderino's picture

Not really an option when the Thursday before The Game is Thanksgiving...

"This is a very complicated case: a lot of ins, lot of outs, lot of what-have-yous."

buckeyejonross's picture

This is horrible. My walk home to 11th and Summit was more dangerous than Mirror Lake.

"You might as well appeal against a thunderstorm as against these terrible hardships of war. War is cruelty, there is no use trying to reform it; the crueler it is, the sooner it will be over." -William T., Battle of Atlanta, B1G.

Citrus's picture

My initial thought is that regulating the jump opens the school up to more liability than had it not.
Now the school is controlling the activity. If something happens it is on them. By handing out wristbands the school is condoning the activity and tying into sanctioned events.

William's picture

Exactly, before it was an event that was not sanctioned by the university. Now they're not only condoning it, they're becoming actively involved in it. Also, by having only one entrance, the university is creating a choke point for a bunch of drunk students. This is just stupid. 

buckeye_heart's picture

It was either my soph. or junior year that it was so cold that the entire sidewalk around Mirror Lake was covered in ice. I didn't die of the cold and don't remember hearing of anyone else who died. Leave them alone and just have the cops there to monitor like they have in the past. I don't believe that the idea of "controlling" this is going to happen. The students will either climb the fence (which will increase arrests I'm sure) or go another day which someone else already mentioned the students were thinking of doing.

LILBUCKEYE's picture

What happens when 8000 students don't wanna wait in line and knock over the fences? Well at least they'll have wristbands...

The Ohio State University '17

N8thegr8's picture

It get's better.... When you go get your wristband, they put it on for you and you cannot remove it until after you have left the area Tuesday night. 

"Play for Ohio State or get beat by Ohio State. That simple." - Kirk Barton 

Ugly Hour Chazz Bear's picture

At least it prevents those kids from selling bands.

I like the bux.

BenW's picture


N8thegr8's picture

Fences are already up at Mirror Lake. Tuesday's jump should be interesting. #ohiostate #beatmichiganweek pic.twitter.com/EhSGZ9Ie0e

"Play for Ohio State or get beat by Ohio State. That simple." - Kirk Barton 

BuckeyeStrong2's picture

Get about 75 drunk students and that b**ch is coming down!


Idaho Helga's picture

There is a tradition here that really mirrors this. Hear me out.  Every Jan 1st at noon, there is a gathering of people (1000+ at Sanders Beach here on Lake Coeur d'Alene and mind you, this is North Idaho so in the average year the sand is frozen and there is ice on the shor/water to where you would jump.  But they wear silly outfits and strip down to swimming wear and go jump in the lake for like, 30 seconds.
The city will have nothing to do with this because it is crazy.  There is ZERO police presence, even though this is clearly a major event. It's on  the front page of the paper, but no cops. The beach gets crowded.  The fire dept parks surprisingly by the event.  I did this last year (we had a blissful day of 32F and no ice) and I have to say, for a tourist town, this was the best thing I've ever done here.  You can't imagine the fun.  My legs were blueish as I came out and I had to wait to get the feeling back in my feet before the drive home but it was  INCREDIBLE. NO REGRETS!
So you potential jumpers, Get a wrist band and become a part of history!  DOOOO IITTTTT

Buckeye in a Bobcat world's picture

I feel like liability will be on them more so if they are there to try and control the situation. Before it was like they had no real part in it, just students doing there own thing.