Friday, November 20, 2009

Michigan vs Ohio State or "When Did this Become a Sports Blog?"

Tomorrow, for the 106th time in the storied history of both programs, The University of Michigan and Ohio State University football teams will meet on the field of play to battle for Midwestern supremacy in what is commonly referred to as one of the greatest rivalries in not just college sports, but the entire sports world.

When I was in college at the University of Michigan, this was a holy day. I say that with no irony or sarcasm whatsoever. The day of the Michigan vs Ohio State football game was a different day, the air tasted a little sweeter on the walk to the stadium, the fans cheered a little bit louder when the players took the field; it was like any football Saturday in Michigan, but at the same time, unlike any football Saturday in Michigan. It was the best day of the year.

And now, with the game just one day away, I couldn't care less about watching the game, or it's outcome. To quote the Joker, "I mean, what happened?"

If you'd told me when I was a freshman in college that in just six years, this rivalry would become so lopsided that I would be willing to bet my life savings on a Michigan loss, I wouldn't have believed you. I wouldn't be able to conceive the idea of a completely non-competitive Wolverine team, one that not only wasn't nationally ranked, but sat at the bottom of the admittedly awful Big Ten Conference. But, sure enough, Michigan football has fallen on hard times, and the question now is not if U of M will beat OSU tomorrow, but if they'll ever beat them again.

The fact of the matter is, a rivalry is only a rivalry if there's a chance either side can win. In talking with two of my Ohio State supporting "friends," both agreed that it's just much more exciting when the outcome isn't easier to predict than whether a fat kid is going to go up for seconds at an all-you-can-eat buffet. With so much history between the two teams, and so much bad blood, the least both sides can give us is a close game.

So tomorrow, when I wake up late, maybe missing the start of the first quarter, and end up turning off the game when it gets out of hand in the third, and Michigan's defense (which starts two walk-on players) proves once again that their biggest problem is having no basic knowledge of the game of football, maybe I'll throw on some videos of Desmond Howard, Charles Woodson, Elvis Grbac, Tom Brady, or Braylon Edwards, and remember when Michigan and Ohio State actually gave the people of Ann Arbor hope, instead of a reason to say "better luck next year."


Jason Heat said...

Sad to see it get this bad, especially after going back and reading this -

ah, better days

Daniel said...

how quickly things change.