Confessions: Volume IV

By Kevin Harrish on July 26, 2016 at 10:10 am
Confess your sins, child.

It's time, once again, to confess your sins against Ohio State athletics

It's time once again for one of our favorite days of the year (or at least the offseason). Today, the confessional is open and you're free – nay, encouraged – to confess your sins against Ohio State athletics.

Like previous years, we'll lead things off, confessing our own sins before you first. Then, we'll turn things over to you where you can speak freely without the fear of downvotes (regardless of the level of your depravity).

I'll start us off.

I've camped on the sidewalk outside of the Schott close to 20 times, in temperatures sometimes as low as -9 degrees for front row seats at men's basketball games, and I am seriously considering not purchasing season's tickets this year. The ticket prices are outrageous given the talent of the team and the lack of big games. I bleed scarlet and gray and I'll buy a ticket from someone (there are plenty of people selling) and camp multiple nights in the snow to watch them host UConn in December, and most Big Ten games in the winter, but I'm not paying over $15 a ticket to watch a mediocre basketball team take on North Carolina Central, Providence, Jackson State and Marshall.

As a student, I don't like wearing football jerseys of current players or getting pictures and autographs from them (that's partly why I made my custom Chic Harley jersey to wear to every game). Yeah, they're star athletes, but they're also my classmates. Buying the jersey of a someone I regularly see walking around campus, playing basketball at the RPAC, standing in line at Chipotle or online shopping in a boring finance lecture just seems weird to me. I certainly didn't feel this way before I was a student, and maybe won't after I graduate, but the players just seem like normal dudes who happen to play football. Making a big deal about it seems odd.

Ohio State's stadium atmosphere sucks compared to Virginia Tech's. The crowd in Blacksburg was almost half the size of The Horseshoe's, but almost twice as loud as I've ever heard Ohio Stadium.

Everybody likes to play the What If game about the 2015 Michigan State loss. The prevailing #take is that if the Buckeyes could have squeaked out a win, they surely would have beaten Michigan, Iowa, and won two playoff games to repeat as champions. I understand the optimism, and it's rooted in the fact that the team was one of the most talented Buckeye squads in history, but I think that's pure fantasy. I think there were real problems with the offense that I don't think would have been properly addressed without the frustration of a loss (we've heard over and over how much Urban Meyer hates losing). If the Buckeyes got by Sparty, nothing would have changed and either Michigan, Iowa or any of the playoff teams would have ended their season anyway.

That felt good to get off my chest.

Chris Lauderback

I'm pretty much over OSU twitter mostly because of the veiled long-dick contests so many of the people who cover OSU participate in. The inane subtweets born out of paranoia and a quest for clicks even from higher ranking journalists limits my use/exposure largely to gameday. 11W's internal Slack is my safe-haven. (Yeah, I know, this rant was unironically a bit of a subtweet but you get my drift.)

I believe this has come up in previous confessionals but since we still have ample room to move the needle - my skin crawls when I hear people in the wild or see comments on 11W in which Michigan and Jim Harbaugh are referred to as scUM, Meatchicken, Hairball etc. I believe those standby monikers lack creativity and make the collective fanbase look a little knuckledrag-ish.

In the past, I've confessed that while I value what Craig Krenzel and Aaron Craft gave to Ohio State, I feel they are two of the most overrated/overhyped athletes in their respective sports. Today, I'm officially adding Tyvis Powell to that list. Yes, he joined OSU when the sky was falling and yes he had some big picks but he also routinely forced Vonn Bell to cover for him and was the king of the poor pursuit angle but because he was fun and engaging with the media he was always given a pass, just like Krenzel and Craft.

Tyvis Powell, national champion.
"You serious?"

Brutus and Quick Cals are both cheesier than Seven Nation Army.

Michigan's winged helmet and fight song are both ranked #2 behind Ohio State's helmet and fight song on my list.

Johnny Ginter

The facade of Ohio Stadium is getting bad. I know that there's a limited amount of changes you can make because of general complaints/the stadium being on the National Register of Historic Places, but the stadium needs a facelift to take it from the pockmarked 14 year old Subway sandwich artist that it is now to the dignified 23 year old Subway sandwich artist that it could be.

Urban Meyer shifting away from locking down Ohio in recruiting to a more national approach bothers me way more than it should. To me, Buckeye football has always represented the state of Ohio in a very real way, and fewer players originating from here lessens that feeling. That's not to say that I'd be kind of okay with fielding a slightly worse team with mainly Ohio kids rather than a slightly better team with mainly non-Ohio kids, but... wait, that's exactly what I'm saying.

Ramzy Nasrallah

I have always told myself the exchange rate for an Ohio State football championship is obscene, like maybe I would trade 10 consecutive Final Fours for one appearance in the college football playoff. I would trade a national title in a non-revenue sport for a garbage time touchdown in Ann Arbor (and I genuinely love the non-revs - I was a ball of nerves watching the men's volleyball final this year). But I got unexpectedly emotional about the Cavs' title and now I have to question everything. I have watched every highlight film, every compilation of reaction videos and Game 7 itself more times than I can count and I have yet to not get misty even once. Maybe my currency valuations are off. The football Buckeyes are still untouchable but maybe it's not as big of a delta as I thought. I should have further confirmation in November when the Indians win the World Series in five games. Stay tuned.

I think the Buckeyes are going to beat Oklahoma by 17 points. I am irrationally nervous about just about every other game.

Whatever it is people see in the 2016 Michigan team that's giving it national title I grew up with serious Wolverine Paranoia and always think of them - even their objectively shitty teams - in exaggerated terms, like they're just saving up their super powers to shock the world. Michigan is always way better in my head than it is in reality. That's the context. So now that you know that, the national title hype they're getting for 2016 is mystifying to me. They're a year away and still have too much dead weight atop their roster. Don't tell me about the 2014 Buckeyes being a year away. Michigan 2016 isn't that team by a huge margin.

Andrew Ellis

I feel like nearly everyone hated on the administration for allowing the Gator Bowl (lol) to actually take place. Yes, that was an awful year and yes that was an awful game. However, I think some of the feelings toward Gene Smith were a little harsh. Ohio State obviously went undefeated in 2012 and didn't really have anything to show for it – and that sucked. There's just a lot of hindsight involved with this and I think a lot of people would have complained if we didn't play in a bowl game following the 2011 season – even though the team was pretty hard to watch.

Damario McCall is the GOAT.
McCall the GOAT.

Between roughly 2002 and 2006, Theodore Ginn Jr. earned a special place in my heart. A place that I vowed no other Ohio State athlete would ever wander into. I remember watching his Glenville highlights before he was ever named a 5-star on every recruiting outlet, and I was awe-struck. Humans shouldn't be allowed to run that fast. 
I told many that my feelings toward this near-perfect being could not be surpassed. Today, I can fully admit that one Demario McCall is on pace to reach, and possibly even surpass, the #feels I felt during the Ginn Era. He hasn't even been on campus for two months, but he's on a record-setting pace. 

I was a little bit worried about Urban's ability to recruit in Florida. That may sound weird, but I guess I was concerned about some of the high school coaches down there and how they viewed his departure from UF. I had convinced myself that him leaving the state on "bad terms" could follow him to Columbus. 

Grant Edgell

I was all but certain Ohio State would lay an egg against Michigan after the dismal performance versus Michigan State, especially after Ezekiel's post game comments. That doesn't necessarily mean I thought they would lose but 42-13 was nowhere near realistic in my mind.

Nearly 40,000 followers for @FakeUrban is a disgrace. Thanks, Shelley.

I wasn't convinced Tyvis Powell would ever see the field turf of Ohio Stadium for meaningful minutes, much less seal a win in The Game with a goal line interception, earn Defensive MVP in the championship game and eventually have a fair shake at landing a spot on a NFL roster. I was a big fan early on after working for three months with him on his blog that detailed his transition from high school to Ohio State but wasn't sure where the three star fit in for Urban Meyer as far as playing time. I honestly thought he wouldn't get much. Ever.

I was pissed at Urban for QBgeddon from the minute the term was created last spring until the clock hit 0:00 versus Michigan in the fall, at which point all was forgiven. That plan never felt like the right one from the very inception. I loved Cardale and what he had personally become (and had done for the team just months earlier) but felt like that was JT's job to lose even after the College Football Playoffs.


In last year's confessional, I noted that I struggle to see college football as something other than a glorified farce. My distaste for the whole enterprise only grows. I could belabor all the reasons I find the sport so disquieting, but I fear that would be getting into the realm of political statements. I think it's a bubble that will ultimately burst, as many fast-growing economic activities do.

I promised myself after the 2014 season that I would not complain at all about the 2015 season. This amounted to me not caring a whole lot about the season as it unfolded. I shrugged my shoulders at the Michigan State loss. An Alabama national championship usually makes me want to firebomb Tuscaloosa (ed. I still think we should explore that option, though). But, after 2014? Meh. I felt rather satiated to the point of complacent last year.

Here's a hot #take. I go out of my way to not question Urban Meyer since his results speak well for his acumen. Yet, I think forcing a QB battle when J.T. Barrett was easily the quarterback for that offensive system was kind of hare-brained. An extension of this #take: it was the worst QB decision he made since thinking John Brantley could be a thing in 2010.

On that note: I like Tim Beck. I think Urban Meyer would be wise to trust him more. There's a thinly veiled statement I'm making here if you can discern it.

I did not watch a single men's basketball game last year. In my defense, I don't think that squad gave me much a reason to watch them.

If given a choice between the men's basketball team winning the NCAA Tournament or the women's basketball team winning their tournament, I'd go with the latter. You should too. Kevin McGuff is the best recruiter in Columbus and his program is fun to watch.

The best recruiter in Columbus.
Kevin McGuff: The best recruiter in Columbus.
Magee Sprague

When I was little my uncle gave me a Michigan State hat and it is still the comfiest, best hat I own. I secretly wear it around the house to this day

Zach Fleer

I didn't believe Urban Meyer would win a national championship in the early years. After a turbulent 2011 season, that just so happened to be my freshman year at Ohio State (what a time to be alive, right?), I had speculation if the Urbs could do it at OSU. Boy, was I wrong and happy because of it.

I was semi rooting for Indiana to take Ohio State to OT last year in Bloomington. Attending that game, I kept thinking in my mind how cool an overtime game would be on the road, even if that meant I was semi rooting for the Hoosiers against my beloved Buckeyes. Thankfully that never happened and Zeke single-handedly led us to victory.

I pledged to myself that wherever Ezekiel Elliott was drafted, I would change my NFL fan hood to that team. And here I am, a newfound Dallas Cowboys fan after being a victim of the Cleveland Browns for the last 16 years. My Ohio State obsession makes me do things like that.

Kyle Jones

I think Ohio State’s font game is a mess, and kind of embarrassing for an organization that takes its ‘brand’ so seriously. The end zones don’t match the logo, which don’t match the basketball uniforms. If the Illinois athletic department can figure this out, so can Ohio State.

Despite how frustrating the past two seasons have been, I actually enjoy being a fan of Buckeye hoops more than football. Without the burden of expectations, there are more opportunities to find unexpected enjoyment, versus watching football when a win often delivers more relief than joy.

I know I’m stepping into a minefield with this (given how many arguments this has started amongst the 11W staff), but I truly believe Columbus pizza is straight-up bad. Once the Flying Pizza closed on High St, there ceased to be even a mediocre pie near campus. Don’t @ me with your Donato’s mentions either.

Those are our confessions. Now let's hear yours.

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