Obama to Give OSU Commencement

February 20, 2013 at 2:53p    by Ramzy Nasrallah    
125 Comments

The largest graduating class in the history of The Ohio State University will have our Commander-in-Chief delivering its commencement address.

Obama is the third sitting president to deliver Ohio State's commencement address. George W. Bush spoke to spring graduates in 2002. Gerald Ford addressed summer graduates shortly after rising to the presidency in 1974. Both George H. W. Bush and Walter Mondale also spoke to graduates when they were vice president. Bill Clinton spoke to graduates in 2007, but that was years after his presidency concluded.

This will be Obama’s fifth visit to Ohio State in the last 16 months. Last March, he delivered a speech on alternative energy and energy independence. In May, he officially kicked-off his re-election campaign at OSU. In August, he made a brief visit to the Ohio Union. And in October, he visited Ohio State for a campaign rally on the Oval. 

IMPORTANT: If you're planning on driving around campus/Columbus on Sunday, May 5 when the president is in town: Don't.

IMPORTANT II: If you're planning on violating 11W's commenting policy with a political statement in the comments: Don't.


125 Comments

Comments

Matt's picture

man that lady's dress is turrible

RBuck's picture

Yep, just for the scUM colors alone.

"It's just another case of there you are". ~ Doc (1918-2012)

luckynewman13's picture

Hey! No politics! ;)

ATXbucknut's picture

And now Urban recruits the prez to give the commencement speech. His power knows no boundaries.
Urban 2016.

BUCKI4LIFE's picture

Stay off my Eleven Warriors! Politics free zone!

faux_maestro's picture

It's not politics, it's huge news.

Inní mér syngur vitleysingur

dubjayfootball90's picture

The two notes at the end made me laugh. but that is a pretty sweet scenario for the graduates. Good deal

bwh's picture

Going to miles better than Clinton when I graduated. Only guy I've ever seen speak publicly that got a standing ovation at the start and a slow clap with crickets at the end. It was painful.
He used the word there (or their) 5x within a once sentence, and rambled like an old drunk. Whomever he got to do his post-presidency speeches may have phoned that one in.
Then Archie came back to talk again and all was right in the world.

partisan's picture

Regardless of political affiliation, having the sitting president give your commencement is amazing.  Grats to OSU for the get

Roger's picture

Disagree. But I'll refrain from discussing so as to avoid the "no politics" policy. 

causeicouldntgo43's picture

If you don't want political statements, then why offer this up at all? Fumble by 11W.....

jedkat's picture

I dunno, maybe because it's a pretty big deal to have the sitting POTUS address the LARGEST graduating class in OSU history?
...or they personally want to see your head explode in internal rage!

“The teams that don’t respect their coaches and don’t trust their coaches are the teams that go .500"
~Zach Boren

gwalther's picture

Agree with this statement. It's great for The Ohio State University. Party does not matter.
 

Class of 2008

causeicouldntgo43's picture

A lot of things that happen at Ohio State are a big deal, but they are not typically offered up for commentary on 11W unless they have a connection to OSU sports, particularly Football and Basketball. Great to have a sitting POTUS speak at commencement - but bringing that up and including the picture, without any sports connection makes it look a bit political in my opinion. If Marco Rubio was giving the commencement address and it was mentioned here I'd feel the same way.....

gwalther's picture

Having the sitting President speak, whether it's Ford, Bush, or Obama, is a big enough deal that it should be posted here. It's more rare than Buckeye National Championships..

Class of 2008

Jason Priestas's picture

That's fair. But just a heads-up: If Rubio becomes the next President and he agrees to speak at Ohio State for commencement, we'll publish that news, too.

Earle's picture

Yeah, but what if its Chris Christie?  Isn't the resemblance to Brady Hoke alone enough to refuse to report it?  I'm still recovering from the lead photo from Ramzy's last piece.

kevinfrenchfry's picture

i might be with you here purely because of his looks of course

jedkat's picture

Again, I think there is a sports connection to that picture which is POTUS throwing up an O-H-I-O. IMO that's about as cool/bi-partisan as you can get. Hate/Love the sitting person, but respect the office and RESPECT the O-H-I-O!

“The teams that don’t respect their coaches and don’t trust their coaches are the teams that go .500"
~Zach Boren

Torpedo Vegas's picture

I think the connection would be stronger if it was at a Basketball/Football event or if it was related specifically to an athletic event/team. Real life example covered in a past Buckshot: Paul Ryan giving a pep talk to the football team before a game last season.

Torpedo Vegas's picture

That being said 11W has a great track record of being thoughtful and serious on all the issues they decide to cover. I think the staff has earned the benefit of the doubt on some of these closer cases.

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

I think of it as more of a kiss ass connection, as I highly doubt he's actually an OSU fan.

Class of 2010.

Jason Priestas's picture

Eh, we do a good job of keeping this site free of politics. This is a big news story, however, and it's relevant (it's not like this is a story about Obama speaking at San Diego State) so I'm fine with this.

Don't think about whether you like/dislike the man or his politics. Rather, think about how big of a deal it is for the students to have the sitting President of the United States giving their commencement speech. That's a big deal, regardless of anything else.

I always get a chuckle when I hear of athletes skipping trips to the White House because of their political views. They don't understand that it's not the man inviting them, it's the Office of the President that's inviting them. You go, regardless of who is in office and whether or not you'd vote for that person. You go because it's the right thing to do as an American.

causeicouldntgo43's picture

Not trying to ruffle feathers, just abiding by the policy. I agree that the staff does a great job of keeping this site political free. I'm sure we all appreciate that and agree with that, and I'm in favor of keeping it that way. 

Jason Priestas's picture

Thanks. I think the community really handles this stuff well, too. Politics ruins everything.

dubjayfootball90's picture

Amen to the last sentence, Jason. Amen. haha

Pam's picture

So does religion

William's picture

Pam, I believe you have religion and fanaticism mixed up. I'm not religious at all, but I won't state that religions ruins everything, for many people it can be a savior, or an institution through which they may find meaning in life. Now fanaticism is an entirely different issue, one that certainly causes problems. 

Pam's picture

My comment concerns the commenting rules here at 11W and why politics and religion are banned: They ruin everything

William's picture

Ahh, my bad Pam. 

chicagobuckeye's picture

But did you need to say it?

D. Anthony's picture

So just mentioning a president is giving a speech here is a fumble? 
Not being able to to simply read that the president is going to be here without feeling that statement/news is political in itself, makes no sense.

D. Anthony

RBuck's picture

Saw that tOSU was graduating 12,000 plus...amazing.

"It's just another case of there you are". ~ Doc (1918-2012)

gwalther's picture

As far as I can tell... Urban recruited the President to Ohio State.

Class of 2008

Brutus Forever's picture

i graduated last year from osu and our commencement speaker was weak.. im pissed lol

"I learned to dislike Michigan at a very young age.” – Urban F. Meyer

cronimi's picture

Same here. I couldn't even remember the speaker at my commencement -- I had to look it up: Leonard Downie Jr., then-Executive Editor of the Washington Post and double alum of tOSU. Very ... unmemorable. 

Pam's picture

Mine was Daniel P. Moynihan. He was good.

TBDBITL0509's picture

I had Deb Ballum out of Moritz. It was so unmemorable that I'm confusing her speech for one I saw while playing commencement band for a gradation that wasn't mine...

Denny's picture

We had John McCain in 2006. He sort of used the speech to jump-start his presidential run, and you could tell. A lot of platitudes, he hadn't shifted gears from Senate speaking to Campaign-speaking, and he looked ill. I was a bit let down. Having the sitting president speak at graduation is a huge deal. It was when W spoke, and it is now. 

Taquitos.

Buckeye Black's picture

I had Brian Williams at mine.  I don't watch the news very often but he was great.  He cracked scUM jokes like he had been doing it for years.

gwalther's picture

Class of 2008, what what. "I'm glad that I'm in Columbus today and not at That School Up North, because otherwise I would have to speak slowly and use smaller words." -Brian Williams

Class of 2008

buckeye_baker's picture

That was mine as well! He was great...although I can still remember how miserable I was that day - mixing one of the hottest days on record in June and an all-night drinking fest the night before adds up to a bad time.

"I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying." -Woody Hayes

popeurban's picture

I took off the gown and was chilling in my shorts and a white tee.  I guess not very distinguished, but I was comfortable...

Pam's picture

Brian Williams is hysterical

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

may be, he's still a spineless media hack though :)

Buckeye Chuck's picture

I think presidents only do three commencement addresses per year, and one is pretty much always set aside for a service academy, so it's a big coup for OSU to get Obama.
It's going to take me a little while to wrap my head around the idea of a Cinco de Mayo commencement, though. In my day, that was halfway through spring quarter.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

ArTbkward's picture

Important point number 1 spot on.  Just in case campus isn't crazy enough on graduation day, let's add the President shutting down roads left and right into the mix.  Like Columbus didn't have enough of that in the fall.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...
(Also, I'm not a dude)

gwalther's picture

At least this traffic congestion does not also mean we're being inundated with political ads. Victory for all.

Class of 2008

buckeye_baker's picture

They've done it before - Bush spoke while he was president and it wasn't that terrible for traffic/security. I think most schools would have the current President on the top of their dream list for speakers so I think this is great for OSU.

"I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying." -Woody Hayes

faux_maestro's picture

It wasn't horrible for Bush (my graduation speaker) but we had to be there really early. and this was just a few months after 9/11.

Inní mér syngur vitleysingur

kr66osu's picture

Urban Meyer does it again!

Poison nuts's picture

Dammit , I was going to go with something very similar - I was reading through here hoping no one came up with that...but you did! Good on you.
*/Bows.

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

Brutus Forever's picture

+1

"I learned to dislike Michigan at a very young age.” – Urban F. Meyer

kevinfrenchfry's picture

swing state swag baby
EDIT: is this offensive or something? wasn't really trying to start a politcal convo, sorry

Dougger's picture

Sweet

I like football

carence's picture

They wanted to give me the speaking duties but I had to go to work.

William's picture

Put this on the Twitterverse, but OSU has always drawn in the heavy-hitters for Spring Commencement: Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Gerald Ford, John McCain, John Boehner, John Glenn, Spiro Agnew, Neil Armstrong, Walter Cronkite, Norman Borlaug, William McKinley, Shimon Peres, Edward Rickenbacker (best one in my opinion), Woody Hayes, Clark Kellogg, Elizabeth Dole, Barbara Walters, Walter Mondale, Les Wexner (surprise surprise) and John Wolfe. 

William's picture

Think about this. OSU has had 3 sitting presidents (Obama, Bush, Ford), a former president (Clinton), a president to-be (McKinley), America's WWI Ace (Rickenbacker), the first American in space (Glenn), the first man on the moon (Armstrong), Israel's current president (Peres), several media legends (Cronkite and Walters), a long time senator (Dole), the current Speaker of the House (Boehner), two presidential candidates (McCain and Mondale), one of the greatest CFB coaches of all time (Hayes), a great CBB player (Kellogg), the wealthiest man in Ohio (Wexner), and "The father of the Green Revolution" (Borlaug). 

luckynewman13's picture

Counting the Astronauts isn't fair
 
they all come from Ohio

Buckeye Chuck's picture

Glenn was speaker at my commencement. Big thrill. Of course, it's usually someone real good in spring. People who graduated summer quarter would always get a secretary in the College of Social Work or someone of that caliber.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

I'd rather have Jack Hanna.

Class of 2010.

Doc's picture

Or Hanna Barbera

"Say my name."

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

I'm with ya...hell, I'd rather have Mickey Mouse

Savage45's picture

The last time a POTUS spoke in the Horseshoe was in June 2002, and that football season turned out pretty nice! Regardless of your opinion of Obama, this is a good omen for OSU football.

740's picture

[edited by 11W]

harleymanjax's picture

WHY?
We already have the best orator ever!
KERRY FRICKIN COOMBS should give all the speeches around here forever!

"Because I couldn't go for 3"

JollyFatMan's picture

I'd go to OSU just to have that speech at my graduation. 

How firm thy friendship..

William's picture

I'd nix the political commentary. I don't necessarily disagree with you, but this isn't the place to discuss this. 

Buckeye Chuck's picture

There was a lot more in that post than just "facts." Don't break well-established rules here and then play the victim.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

Pam's picture

I didn't delete your post. But, as a mod I will see to it that this one gets Das Boot. You know you are violating the policy.

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

delete it. I don't care.
Go back to elementary school and tattle-tale if that's what makes you happy.
I really don't care.
If people don't agree with me - just downvote the shit out of me - I don't care. Doesn't bother me.
 
 
 
 
 
(wow ... get a life)

Pam's picture

OVER THE LINE! This isn't 'Nam, there are rules.

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

"Nam"? please, don't be so dramatic. It was simply an honest opinion. Get over it.

Pam's picture

Obviously you are not a fan of "The Big Lebowski" 
As for your simple honest opinion:
IMPORTANT II: If you're planning on violating 11W's commenting policy with a political statement in the comments: Don't.

Nappy's picture

No, the ones that violate the commenting policy get deleted.  Which I'd recommend you read again.

Fan of bacon since 1981

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

I've actually never read the commenting policy, to be honest.
I will read it though. Thank you.

Nappy's picture

Look, we're all entitled to our opinions, but we keep this site politic free because it's such a divisive subject.  No one here cares which side you lean to, we only care about which school you root for.  So pretty freaking please, take your political talk somewhere else.  No one cares.

Fan of bacon since 1981

faux_maestro's picture

[deleted by 11W]

Inní mér syngur vitleysingur

William's picture

[deleted by 11W]

faux_maestro's picture

I was simply letting the man know where he can go if he wants to do that sort of thing. 11W is for Ohio State news, I come here to escape all that other bull$hit.

Inní mér syngur vitleysingur

Brutus Forever's picture

+1 william

"I learned to dislike Michigan at a very young age.” – Urban F. Meyer

William's picture

I don't even know why my comment was censored, it wasn't political. However people keep upvoting it, which is comical. 

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

The truth hurts. Look at the over-reaction. I was just giving honest opinions. Guess they were deemed too political. No more politics.
But, it's clear the truth hurts (if you don't agree with it:)
THANKS FOR THE INFO. THOUGH FAUX!

Nappy's picture

Whether I agree or not is irrelevant.  No politics.  

Fan of bacon since 1981

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

My bad. Just read the commenting policy for the first time. It definitely says no politics. I just figured the voting takes care of itself - I'm fine with that.
But, I promise - no more political comments from me.
 Go Bucks!

Nappy's picture

Thank you.  The voting helps, but like I said, we'd rather not go down that road so if you or anyone thinks a post may be considered political/religious/being a jerk, it's probably best you don't post it. 

Fan of bacon since 1981

popeurban's picture

Urbanwoodrow, I find it hard to believe that you just read that as I have personally posted to you about it on at least two occasions.  Here is the most egregious.
http://www.elevenwarriors.com/forum/recruiting/2013/01/eze-isnt-goin-any...

popeurban's picture

and he is still at it right after promising to stop...
http://www.elevenwarriors.com/buckshot/2013/02/19906/gene-smith-targets-...

I have a direct family member who played for OSU, and he heard this from people who were in the program and athletic department, both pre- and post- Tressel era.
As for my "meh" feeling about this whole gay athlete scenario...I posted all of that before I read the commenting policy. So, I will try to stay away from the politics of it, but will just say this: I just can't stand when activists try to equate the gay rights movement to the civil rights movement. The suffering is NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING COMPARABLE!
Maybe I'm a little biased, coming from a bi-racial family, but I just can't stand when the left tries to equate this. The black side of my family's grandparents went through waaaay more than the average gay person goes through. Again, nothing against a gay person...but it's more against the overcompensating activist and the PC actions by our less-than-adequate AD.

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

Genius, in the above comment - I am referring to Ideology, not politics. Go whine and moan somewhere else, but at least get the premise correct first.

popeurban's picture

Again, you can argue semantics all you want, the bottom line is I feel like you don't get it.  You have been on this site for several months now and "have not read the commenting policy" and you could not read the warning in the original post?

IMPORTANT II: If you're planning on violating 11W's commenting policy with a political statement in the comments: Don't.

NYCBuckeye's picture

If you can't recognize the significance of this news without denigrating the President, (whilst violating the forum policy), you should seriously consider a change in your avatar.

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

Sorry Pam...I was in a hurry and didn't read that.
My bad.

UrbanWoodrowEarlTressel's picture

I bet Kerry Coombs would give a better speech.
just sayin'

Nappy's picture

Props to OSU for scoring the POTUS.  Regardless of your political beliefs this is awesome!

Fan of bacon since 1981

wibuckeye's picture

My daughter says there's a four ticket limit.  She says a petition has already been initiated to increase the number of tickets available.  She graduated last June and we had nine attend at the Shoe.

WIBUCKEYE

Ramzy Nasrallah's picture

If you had the words "Benghazi" "Obummer" "Mitt" or "Faux News" I deleted your entire post without regard to the rest of it or the context.

No politics. Our president is giving Ohio State's commencement speech. That's not political; it's news. The only reason not to Buckshot this would be to avoid seeing what I just finished deleting. Be better.

Bucks43201's picture

^ Yes

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

81Alum's picture

We are TBDUITL (The Best Damn University In The Land), national leaders from around the world want to associate with THE Ohio State University!

RedStorm45's picture

He's done michigan, notre dame, asu, Barnard college since being elected.  This isn't his first rodeo.
I get the need to avoid politics, but you're posting a non-sports story centering around the biggest political figure in the country, and one who often brings about strong feelings in many people.  You also have a staff member saying athletes avoiding White House visits are unAmerican.  It sounds like an invitation for political comments in many ways, despite the warning given.

Jason Priestas's picture

Sorry. The point of my comment was to be apolitical. It doesn't matter if the President is Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush or Obama -- if you're invited to the White House as recognition for a team championship, I think it's poor form not to attend.

TkeBuck's picture

Having Obama at Commencement is one of the greatest OSU memories these kids will have. If some of you don't have anything good to say about him, well you know the rest....

BuckeyeLurker0509's picture

LOL @ all the "deleted by 11w"
 

kevinfrenchfry's picture

wow, really cant believe what happened on this buckshot, this is a pieve of osu news, if the most interesting man in the world gave the commencement that would be a buckshot as well, its osu news and its big news especially for that particular graduating class.  and no matter who you like politically you a) shouldnt weigh in and b) SHUT UP AND BE GRATEFUL IT ISN'T OPRAH!!!

hodge's picture

"Gerald Ford addressed summer graduates shortly after rising to the presidency in 1974."

Heh, wonder how that one went over, considering he went 2-1 against OSU as a center and linebacker for Michigan.

William's picture

One could say that his presidency wasn't unanimously decided upon, just like all of Michigan's national championships. 

Colby3333's picture


LMAO!!!!  This guy is doing an OSU Commencement?  Wow!!!!
 

703Buckeye's picture

Have you ever heard of mirror imaging?

"Attack the Strong, Trample the Weak, Hurdle the Dead!"
-Former OSU S&C Coach Lichter

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

All I see is the pitstain.

BME_Buckeye's picture

I'm jealous. I had the owner of the Rock and Roll HOF speak at my graduation. I would take Obama speaking at my commencement. Also, someone said it was 12,000 people graduating which is more that then 10,000 that graduate last year. Shocking. 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

Riggins's picture

The sitting President of the United States has chosen to give a commencement speech at The Ohio State University, people.  The leader of the free world is going to be on campus to talk to the graduates.
My God.  Take off your left-wing/right-wing badges and be proud of this university.  I don't care if it's Obama or Clinton or Bush or Christie.  The office of the presidency is giving singular attention to the university we all love so much.  That's big.