Q&A with an Opponents Blogger: Rutgers

Finally we are one day away from the Battle of The Scarlets. The Scarlet Knights of Rutgers try to invade Columbus with hopes of upsetting the Scarlet and Gray of Ohio State. This week I have had the great pleasure of getting to work with one Rutgers blogger and one Rutgers successful podcast host. I know shocking Rutgers has fans right (I kid). It has been a pleasure to work with Sal from salsoothsayer.com who not only is a big Rutgers fan but also a big B1G fan and have had the pleasure of working with him in the past. Also joining the conversation today is Jerry who is host of the R Big Show and in that link you can hear us talk some about the game last night.

Time to grab your favorite beverage and sit back and enjoy what they bring to the table for us today.

MotSaG: What are Rutgers fans thoughts of the Big Ten and becoming a part of the conference?

Sal Rutgers fans literally could not be more excited. There is a tremendous amount of pride that students, alumni and fans of the school feel in the acceptance into the premier athletic and academic conference in the nation. Most supporters of Rutgers realize this goes well beyond the athletic field and they understand how academic programs and research will benefit immensely. For half of a decade now Rutgers has been a team without a home. Fans and supporters feel that has ended now.

Jerry It has been everything we thought it would be. I’ve enjoyed the coverage on the Big Ten network. Rutgers has played Penn State. They have played Michigan. Both of the games were at home and were electric. They play Ohio State this week, with Nebraska next week and Wisconsin and Michigan State still down the road. As a college football fan you could not ask for more!

MotSaG: Whats more surprising that you didn’t think you would have heard in the preseason, Rutgers starts season 5-1 or Gary Nova first ever player to win Player of the Week award in three different conferences?

Sal I think that most would feel that one would have to come with the other. The only way that Rutgers could be 5-1 is with great quarterback play and the team has had great quarterback play this season. Including Nova’s forgettable game against Penn State he has completed 93 of 150 passes (62.0%) for 1601 yards and 13 touchdowns against 7 interceptions. He has thrown for over 280 yards in four or Rutgers six games. Nova also became Rutgers career leader in passing touchdowns this season. Most fans would have been excited by a 4-2 start so 5-1 has Rutgers fans very optimistic going into the second half of the season.

Jerry Gary Nova garnering POW is not the least bit surprising. He has always had very good games – he is the school’s all-time touchdown leader – it is the consistency against quality defenses that we are looking for. Many felt the Scarlet Knights could pull off a win against Penn State or Michigan. However, to do so and not stumble along the way with a tough road opener at Washington State and a gritty Navy team in the middle of the first part of the schedule has been a testament to the toughness of this team and the preparation of the staff.

MotSaG: Do you expect the Scarlet Knight players being lost in awe of playing in the Horseshoe?

Sal I think excited is more the correct term than awe. Certainly the players are recognize this opportunity. It will clearly be the biggest venue that the players have played in but two years ago the team went to Fayetteville, Arkansas in front of 70,000 plus and left with a 35-26 victory. At 5-1 this game on ABC at 3:30 is kind of like playing with house money.

Jerry They should be. It is one of the truly amazing venues in college football. Who could not take a moment, to imagine yourself as a kid on the Pee Wee fields and watching games Ohio State games on TV and then coming to the realization that here you are in front of 107,000 fans at Horseshoe! It is culmination of years of hard work and dedication that each player has put in over his career. However, don’t take awe as being shell-shocked. In fact, it is a great motivation factor to play in such an environment. Who wouldn’t want to star or put together their best effort on this stage?

MotSaG: Key players on defense Buckeye fans should keep an eye on?

Sal Well Rutgers defensive line has received a lot of credit this year and deservedly so. Redshirt freshman, athletic freak and pass-rushing specialist 6’6 235 Kemoko Turay leads the Big Ten with 5.5 sacks (and leads the nation with 3 blocked field goals). But the DL starts in the middle with the play of New Jersey native junior Darius Hamilton. Hamilton plays the 3-technique at 265 lbs so he will be undersized but he has been undersized all season and has still contributed 6 TFL and 3.5 sacks. Hamilton moves inside to nose on passing downs. Sophomore Steve Longa led the team in tackles last year from MLB but switched to play WILL this year. He has 41 tackles so far this season but has not put together a breakout game. That could come this week.

Jerry If they haven’t already, they should learn the name Kemoko Turay. Turay is already building his own legend with 5.5 sacks and three blocked field goals as a raw red-shirt freshman. A former basketball player, he is still very green and may be somewhat mitigated by the read-zone offense of Ohio State. But if it is 3rd and long, zero in on number 58 and you will see one of the most athletic players to ever don the Scarlet for Rutgers.

MotSaG: What concerns do the Scarlet knight fans have about Buckeyes offense?

Sal When a team averages 45 points a game the obvious answer is “a lot”. The biggest concern I have is the quarterback play of J.T. Barrett. Barrett seems to be getting better by the week. Certainly the first priority for Rutgers will be stopping the run but Barrett could really make Rutgers pay with his arm and his legs if Rutgers sells out to stop the running backs.

Jerry What is there not to be concerned about? Of late, QB J.T Barrett has been brilliant and RB Ezekiel Elliot has replaced Carlos Hyde quite famously. Rutgers will need to generate pressure from its front four and when the opportunities to take down Barrett are there they must tackle and tackle well. Keeping Ohio State’s offense off the field will be the best defense.

MotSaG: With the loss of RB Paul James for the year and Rutgers having a bye week was there a lot of focus on trying to improve run game?

Sal There needs to be. The teams running game is improved from last year but not by leaps and bounds. Rutgers struggled to run the ball against Penn State and Michigan. Against Michigan Gary Nova made them pay. Against Penn State he did not. Offensive Coordinator Ralph Friedgen will take what the defense gives him. If Ohio State commits to stopping the run look for Friedgen to get Nova some confidence with easy completions early on before taking the deep shot.

Jerry Most definitely! It is shame that James could not play in this stretch of games for Rutgers. His absence is missed not only by Scarlet Knights fans, but for the fans of the other teams to see him play. However, Offensive Coordinator has been a difference maker so as much as they may be working on the run they are surely game-planning to attack the untested parts of this defense. I would expect safeties Vonn Bell and Tyvis Powell to see a lot of action as the Rutgers has to attack the back-middle of this defense.

MotSaG: Speaking of Paul James what are your thoughts on Ohio State offering his brother Ronnie this week who is already a Rutgers commit?

Sal Well Urban Meyer changed recruiting in the Big Ten a few years ago with his disregard for gentlemen’s agreements. You can argue if that is good or not that isn’t the debate. Rutgers’ fans might be upset at Meyer for the timing of the offer but certainly it speaks highly of Rutgers Coach Kyle Flood’s ability to evaluate talent as the younger James is a borderline two or three star recruit based off of the recruiting services. Not usually the type of athlete Ohio State offers.

Jerry It surely shows the high-stakes game that is called recruiting. The timing was surely somewhat premeditated. On the flipside, it also validates that Ronnie James is potentially a great reel-in for the Scarlet Knights, as Urban Meyer is not just going to throw around scholarship offers.

MotSaG: Point spread is 19.5 do you feel that is disrespectful to Rutgers and what they have done so far this season?

Sal Many feel the line is disrespectful and it crept to 21 earlier today so I’m not sure where the line will finish up. The line seems about right to me. Ohio State buried Maryland by almost 30 points at Byrd Stadium two weeks ago. 19 on the road for Rutgers seems like a compliment if you look at it that way!

Jerry One thing we can all agree is that Vegas tends to know what it is doing. It is a good number. Rutgers could play very well and still come out of this down by two touchdowns or more. On the other hand they are a 5-1 team that has been playing well. Is it disrespectful? No. But it is to be expected, after all this Ohio State and this is Rutgers. This season is about perception for the Scarlet Knight program. They are playing to prove they belong here and they are playing to show a state that is deep in talent that they are not far off from playing for Big Ten titles with their help. We are no longer into moral victories, but a close game here even with a loss could go a long way as well.

MotSaG: Keys for Rutgers to pull off an upset?

Sal First, Rutgers needs to weather the first quarter storm. If the Knights are within one score after the first quarter that will bode well. The obvious key is Rutgers needs to get to the passer. Their pass rush against Ohio State’s pass protection appears to be the Scarlet Knights’ biggest strength. But the key is in putting Ohio State in predictable passing downs and that starts with defense on first down. If Rutgers can keep Ohio State in second and third and long that will give the aggressive blitzing scheme of Rutgers defensive coordinator Joe Rossi a shot. Beyond that, Rutgers needs to win the turnover battle and get either a blocked punt or a big punt/kickoff return.

Jerry Nova has to continue to play well and not revert back to the turnover laden QB he has been in the past against top competition. Michigan was a start for him and if the offensive line could protect him he will have to stretch the Buckeye defense.

On the flipside of the ball, Rutgers will have to pressure J.T Barrett and hope he reverts back to being the red-shirt freshman who struggled against Virginia Tech.

MotSaG: Final score prediction?

Sal Since most people are predicting more points I’ll go less and say Ohio State 31 – Rutgers 17. I think Rutgers can hang around for a while but Ohio State’s tempo and ground game could wear down the Scarlet Knights defensive line resulting in a stressful, but in the end happy Homecoming for the Buckeyes.

Jerry I don’t do predictions, but I will tell you this: I am fairly confident they can beat the 19+ point spread! Many knock the Scarlet Knights for losing to Penn State and beating a struggling Michigan team as well, but Ohio State is one of only two Top 25 teams that has not played another ranked team as well. This is a very talented roster for Ohio State and they start some highly rated young players. But the Buckeyes are also very young. How will the young players respond to adversity if tested? Whatever the outcome, this is the type of game that makes inclusion in the Big Ten so much fun.

I’m not going to give my whole take on what I think the Buckeyes need to do this week as I pretty much summed that up in yesterdays pieced in my preview.

Once again I am so thankful for Sal and Jerry helping me discuss Rutgers for you Buckeye fans to see what they are thinking in the Garden State. You can follow Sal on Twitter @SalSoothsayer and Jerry @RUFANJERRY. Don’t forget to check out Sal’s site (plus you can see my weekly power poll there also) and check out Jerry’s podcast they do a great job covering Rutgers football. Hope you all enjoyed todays post. Have any questions feel free to send me an email to AskMotSag@gmail.com

Negative Buckeye: Sort of Midseason Awards

by: Ryan Black

awesome photo courtesy: The Eddie Mauldin Show

 

 

Hey there jerks and complainers, it’s that time of week again. We’re in week 7 of a 14 week college football season and for some voodoo hogwarsh (as my dad would say it) reason the Buckeyes have already had two bye weeks. The only reason I made it through Saturday without scraping my tiny brains out was the fact that I was able to head downtown to see the Blue Jackets, who are pretty freaking fun to watch these days- Try not to dance

It could be worse though… Penn State is now on their second bye in three weeks while Bowling Green will go 18 days between games after this Saturday (that’s 432 hours or 1,522,200 seconds). Talk about Chinese water torture, sheesh. Another fact I dug up about the Bowling Green Falcons is they have one Saturday game left… for the rest of the year. Thank Tressel I’m a Buckeye for I could not ever deal with a Tuesday night game, let alone one every week.  I still don’t know how I’ll handle a labor day game to kick off next season against VA Tech.

I’ve been complaining all year about the things that really get my goat and I don’t plan on stopping. However, I’m ready to give back to this Buckeye team with my mid season awards.

Yes, Ohio State is only 41% through their season, but we are almost halfway through the entire NCAA season and one can only talk about another god-forsaken bye week so many times. Let’s give the best Buckeyes as of now, their due.

Here it is, the first ever MidSeason Ohio State Buckeye Awards (awards are named after my favorite people because I’m selfish):

 

The Footsteps Shane Falco Best Quarterback Award:

You think I’m going to say J.T. Barrett, and I am, it’s J.T. Barrett.

 

The Petey Jones Top Running Back Guy:

It appeared as Curtis Samuel was poised to win this coveted prize but then Ezekiel Elliot was like, “Nuh Uh (I bet you read this in Monique’s voice)”. The winner is Ezekiel.

 

The Tweeder from Varsity Blues Best WR Bro:

Michael Thomas has become the top target on this team for the first half and I’m sure he’s happy to earn this award, but hopefully not the S.T.D.’s of Tweeder.

 

The Workaholic’s Top Tight Butt Ho… I Mean Tight End Award:

Jeff Heuerman has been injured for most of the games so far and Nick Vannett has been an outstanding blocker as a replacement. Also added on 8 catches and a touchdown, the winner is Nick.

 

The Tyson Walter Knock Out Offensive Lineman of the Year:

You young bucks may not get this reference but that’s cool. In Cooper’s last year, LeCharles Bentley knocked out fellow lineman Tyson Walter during practice; no big deal. Taylor Decker has been outstanding so far as the only returning starter on the offensive line, save a few false starts, so he will win this illustrious fat guy award. Hope Ohio State can keep him for one more year.

 

The Joey Bosa Most Dreamy Defensive Lineman:

Joey Bosa.

 

The Bobby Boucher Linebacker Who Opens Can’s of Whoop Ass Champ:

Darron Lee is a dog among men. He certainly reminds me of a smaller Ryan Shazier.

 

The Antoine Winfield “I’ll Name My Cat After You” Defensive Back:

When I was just a boy, I was given the privilege  of naming the family cat. I chose Winfield because, hell, Antoine was bad ass. My cat Winfield may die soon, so I am in need of a new one.

This year goes to Doran Grant.  He had one fudge up against Cincy but he has been very consistent at shutting down is side of the field. And I think Grant is a very classy name for a feline friend.

and finally…

 

The Larry David God of the Year:

Larry David is the only non Buckeye I will put on a Jim Tressel “lord like” level. He’s my idol and he will take issue with anything or anyone. So who better to name the MVP award of the first half after than the “social assassin”? I’m going with a cop out and am picking two winners, don’t yell at me.

 

And the winners are….

 

 

 

 

Joey Bosa’s parents. These two created the perfect human and without them there would be no reason to wake up in the morning.

 

 

I wanted to go really in depth with this post and do my “first and second team” all Buckeyes but then I realized that would just be the depth chart….

 

Whatever, see you next Tuesday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Negative Buckeye: Maryland Week Complaints and Issues

by: Ryan Black

 

The Ohio State Buckeyes showed off their awesome tackle football skills again last weekend with a murder of some team from Washington D.C. and fans get to look forward to another bye week…

 

Remember in the good ole days when Ohio State would only have one bye week and would be forced to wait almost 3 months until the bowl game at the end of the season? Well this old man does and I miss those times.

Normally I would complain about the anger and stupidity that arose during the game last Saturday but coach Urban Meyer has been making life too pleasant anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I still saw and said some awful words about Maryland players and Ohio State’s secondary but this week I need to complain about something deeper.

This weeks negative view point post will remind the true Ohio State fans how much better the times were before the “ever-so-handsome” Urban Meyer came to Columbus. Old timers always believe that their way is best and I’m no different. Growing up with Ohio State was awesome and kids these days won’t understand how great it truly was in the golden years.

So sit back, grab a liquor drink, and lets reminisce about the better times during the Ohio State baby boomer era (1995-2011)-

 

Best Glory Day Moments:

 

Eddie George Heisman in 1995-

The first memory as a fan that comes to mind is watching the Heisman ceremony in 1995, in which Eddie George took home the ugly statue. With an always smooth look and head, number 27 stole the hearts of America with a dominant senior season.

He had the courage to wear his jersey halfway up his body to show his perfectly sculpted abs; unlike that current punk Ezekiel Elliot kid who wears his halfway down his body.

Joe Germaine vs. Stanley Jackson in 1996-

Ohio State certainly had the capability of going undefeated during the regular season in 1996 (like Urban Meyer has selfishly done twice). But John Cooper is a better man; he wanted to give the opposing teams a chance. Joe Germaine was one of the top quarterbacks in the nation and Stanley Jackson was one of the top 10 quarterbacks named Stanley in Columbus. Coach Cooper used this to make games more difficult for the Bucks.

Using a two quarterback system, John Cooper would often stop Germaine from scoring in the red zone by replacing him with the more mobile Jackson. Many times this replacement would make a bonehead decision and keep the games interesting. The Bucks couldn’t finish off Michigan because of this (in my 8 year old mind at least) but still headed to Pasadena. Here’s to you John Cooper, director of chaos.

Ohio State beats Michigan 31-16 in 1998-

The 1990’s were a great time for true Buckeye fans. Back then beating Michigan actually meant something and was very difficult. In 2014 beating Michigan is easier than my first college girlfriend (I still don’t forget Stacy) and it makes me sick.

Today’s Ohio State fans probably were disappointed after squeaking passed Michigan by 1 point last season. These brats don’t realize that beating Michigan under John Cooper was the equivalent of me landing Gisele Bündchen for a one night stand. Now a days the Ohio State Buckeyes are constantly taking home a 10 out of 10’s and the luster is gone. Been there done that.

Would you really want to bag a super model every time you tried to? (Don’t answer that)

Ohio State wins it all in 2002-

Yea it happened.

Robert Reynolds chokes a bitch in 2003-

Back in my day when Ohio State was losing to a bitter rival they didn’t go down quietly. After a national title in 2002, a still undefeated Ohio State was losing on the road at Wisconsin and things were slipping away. Instead of handling a loss with dignity ,which Urban Meyer stupidly preaches, Robert Reynolds took matters (and throats) into his own hands. This true gangsta started choking out the Badger quarterback Jim Sorgi to teach him a lesson. What that lesson was I don’t know.

I couldn’t sleep the night of the Big Ten Championship loss to Michigan State last year; not because our national championships hope went down the drain, oh no. I was extremely disappointed one of our respectful linebackers did not pile drive, mandible claw or edgecute Connor Cook.

At least we have a former Jim Tressel player on the staff in Anthony Schlegel, who Rock Bottomed a fan to hell last week.

Jim Tressel gives Urban Meyer national title in 2006-2007-

Jim Tressel was getting close to 60 years of age and knew he didn’t have too many years left in the engine to run this great university.  He’d already won a ton of national titles, so he decided to let an up and coming coach from Ohio have his day in the sun in the 2006-2007 national championship game when Ohio State met Florida.

Instead of keeping the game close with dignity, this new hot shot coach (Urban Meyer) came out and depantsed our loves in front of the whole nation. What a freaking jerk.

Jim Tressel falls on the sword for all of us in 2011-

Despite the shenanigans Meyer pulled a few years back, Jim Tressel saw an opportunity to get this now seasoned coach to carry Ohio State flag.  After a health scare, the coach left Florida and joined ESPN for a year in the booth. Coach Tress knew he had to act swiftly.

Being a pro wrestling fan, Jim Tressel knew he wanted to go out on his back with turmoil just like his predecessors:

1. Woody Hayes: Went out swinging and was fired after punching a Clemson player in the neck. That player is still breathing through a machine.

2. Earl Bruce: Was let go after having an above average team for us above average fans for a decade. Brings a tear to my eye.

3. John Cooper: Was canned after his refusal to beat Michigan in the 1990’s. What kind of movie would be good if the bad guys didn’t always win in the end? Man I Loved coach Coop.

The issue in leaving in disgrace was that Tressel never lost any games-ever. And if Jim Tressel ever punched a player, then that young man would be deceased before he hit the ground. How could the coach honor his former brethren and unwritten rule of wrestling if he never loses and doesn’t want to deal with a murder trial?

With a perfect plan of course-Jim decided to make up some scandal about free tattoos for a few of his players and eventually he was “forced” to resign the same year Urban was looking for a head coaching job.  Now don’t laugh, things worked a little differently in my day and free tattoos were a big issue:

Back then if a player got a free tattoo he was a terrorist, see one journalist’s thoughts then and now on player benefits: Jonny Manziel vs Terrelle Pryor

And if a player was overpaid by three dollars he got slapped with a five game suspension: This literally happened and nobody cared.

My how the times have changed and not for the better. I think Posey should have gotten a 307 game suspension, one for every cent he took. Back then kids were forced to follow rules and if they didn’t ESPN would scream for the death penalty of Ohio State.  Now in today’s shameful college football world, players can:

1. be accused of sexual assault

2. steal

3. have bb gun battles in public

with no repercussions at all. No wonder Jim was ready to get out of the business.

Jim Tressel did all that for all of these young jerks who watch Ohio State now and they show no damn respect. What a shame.

 

Currently, Ohio State is doing things with class and winning at a never before seen rate and I don’t know how kids can live with it. If there is a Buckeye god, then please bring back the losses to Michigan, the choke holds and the scandals. Saturdays are too boring anymore.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Buckeye Bucket List

Let’s get this over with quickly: we’re all gonna die. It’s not a pleasant thing to dwell on, but it’s going to happen eventually. Everyday you wake up, you break your personal record of how many days you’ve been alive. But even that record isn’t meant to be broken forever. So while we’re still breathing, let’s talk about what kind of things we’d like to experience as a fan of the Ohio State University.

Let’s talk about our Buckeye Bucket Lists.bucket list

I’ll start by sharing mine. This list is my personal Bucket List for what I’d like to experience as a Buckeye fan. Some of these things have already been accomplished, so they’ve been crossed off the list. But they’re here for completeness sake. Here is what I want to see and do in the next 40+ years I have left on this planet.

You’ll notice the absence of meeting a current (or former) Buckeye on my list. I’m not sure why that is. There are plenty of guys that played for the Buckeyes that I would love to meet in person (a certain biceped gentleman comes to mind, as well as a particularly righteous stiff arm) but I don’t know what the outcome of that meeting is. What would I say? How would I react? Would I go full-Troy Barnes-meeting-Levar Burton? Or would there be a lot of uncomfortable silences and staring at the ground? How inappropriate would it be to ask Vernon to feel his biceps? This is uncharted territory here, people. To avoid such unpleasantries, I’m not going to include “Meeting So-and-so” on my list.

So here are some of the things on my Buckeye Bucket List:

Witness Michigan get WHOOPED in the ‘Shoe: I’ve already done this and it was AMAZING. It was a couple weeks after the ill-fated loss to Michigan State, but the 1998 OSU/UM match-up will forever live in my memory banks as the time I witnessed a more talented, better in every facet of the game Ohio State team dismantle Michigan instead of inexplicably crap the bed and lose to a worse team. This victory solidified an already die-hard mania within my soul. Sacrifice, pain and ecstasy were all emotions I experienced. For reference sake, the week leading up to this game, I was in a TREMENDOUS amount of pain. I could barely walk, but I made the trek from my apartment in Grandview to the Horseshoe, screamed my guts out for three hours and sat for another hour after the game, basking in the joy of beating Michigan (also, I really didn’t want to walk home). A week later I was in the emergency room, prepping for emergency surgery on my backside. But nothing, not even the most painful abscess in the history of abscesses, could keep me away from witnessing this game.

Tailgate for the Michigan Game: These two probably could have been grouped together, because I tailgated at the Michigan Game in the same year. I had never really tailgated before this season. 1998 was the first season my wife and I got season tickets but we lived within walking distance, so we never had a reason to tailgate. But for the Michigan game we were invited to tailgate with my wife’s boss and it was amazing. I have never been around a more raucous, insane group of people this energized at 8 o’clock in the morning. Even through the haze of pain, I was able to enjoy every minute of that beautiful Saturday in November.

Graduate from The Ohio State University: I wanted to do this item on my list so bad, I did it twice. Once, in 2000 with my Bachelors in Electrical and Computer Engineering, and again in 2003 with my Masters in Electrical Engineering. Even though we weren’t able to make it to many games in 2002, being on campus during that magical season was amazing. My six-plus years on campus were some of the greatest times of my life. Ones I will cherish, and even if I’m never able to accomplish any of these other goals, I will feel like my life as a Buckeye is complete.

Tour the Woody Hayes Athletic Center: This is also probably within the every-day Joe’s grasp. I’ve never really looked in to what I need to do to tour the WHAC, but it’s something that I hope to be able to do one day. To see the trophies, to see where the magic happens, to maybe glimpse a current or former Buckeye and shake their hand and thank them for their dedication and for the joy they provide, it would be awesome.

Own an Official (preferably autographed) Jersey: I’m not a huge memorabilia guy, but I have collected baseball and football cards since I was a wee lad. I’m also not a jersey-wearer. I prefer t-shirts as my game-day attire. But I’d love to find an autographed jersey that I could hang on the wall of my home office (or in my man cave, whenever I get one of those), next to my collection of SP Authentic autographed cards of various Buckeyes. It would make a perfect centerpiece to my Buckeye card collection and more importantly, would make Jeremiah insanely jealous.

Have Field Passes for a game: This, of course, was why I started this blog (not really, but sort of). I have been on the field in the Horseshoe before, but never during a game. It doesn’t even have to be the Michigan game. But there are certain body parts I am willing to part with if it meant an opportunity to be on the field when the band is playing, the stadium is rocking and the team comes running on to the field. My wife and I joke all the time about how we feel the Holy Spirit in the stadium as the band plays “Carmen Ohio”. I can only imagine that feeling amplified to the nth degree as you’re standing on the field. I’m getting goosebumps just thinking about it.

Go to the Rose Bowl: I want to go to a bowl game that the Buckeyes are playing in. But if I’m being picky, I don’t want to go to any old bowl game. I had a chance to go to this year’s Orange Bowl but passed. Not because I didn’t want to go. I would have loved to have gone to Florida and cheered on Ohio State. But I want my first experience to be special, and to be pure. I want to attend the Granddaddy of them all, I want to see the Buckeyes in the Rose Bowl. And if I’m having my way, I want it to be against a traditional Rose Bowl opponent, like USC or Stanford. Good, old-fashioned Big Ten/Pac Ten matchups.

Go to an OSU NCAA Tournament Game: This is another experience that should be within my grasp. Tournament games are being played within a three-hour drive every year, and there’s always a good chance that Ohio State will be playing in one of those arenas. I want to see a group of Buckeye Ballers I’ve watched and rooted for all year and support them in their tournament run. Of course, I’d also love to be watching them in a game that is a little more meaningful…

Attend a Final Four that includes the Buckeyes: If you’re new around these parts, you might not have known, but I actually had a chance to go to the 2011 Final Four in Houston if the Buckeyes had made it, courtesy of Buick. If I could have crossed this particular item off my Bucket List, I think I could have been happy not crossing anything else off the list. This would have been enough.

Witness a Football Championship Firsthand: This, of course, is Mecca. This is the dream of millions of fans and has only been experienced by thousands. Watching the 2002 National Championship with co-bloggers Jeremiah and Trevor will be a lifelong memory that I will cherish and never forget. Being able to see it in person? I’m pretty sure death would hold no pallor over that occasion.

I’d like to add that including my best friends in any of these Bucket List items would be great, but what would make it perfect would be able to experience one of these with my Dad. It was his love for the Buckeyes that made me the fan I was. I distinctly remember being at a family friend’s house watching Ohio State dismantle BYU in the 1982 Holiday Bowl. I don’t remember who played for either team (it was actually a Steve Young-led BYU team). I don’t even remember the final score (Ohio State rolled BYU, 47-17). What I do remember was everyone rooting for BYU except my dad. There, in that living room, as half a dozen grown men cheered on the Cougars, my dad was there, loving every minute of Ohio State crushing BYU, hooting and hollering after every score. I was caught up in it and I couldn’t help myself. I wasn’t born in Ohio, but I was born a Buckeye on that fateful December day.

So that’s my bucket list. It’s pretty all-inclusive. Heck, I’ve already started working on it. But I’d love to hear what’s on your Buckeye Bucket List. What’s the one thing you’d like to see? To witness? To be a part of? Or who you’d love to meet, if that’s your cup of tea?

MotSaG’s 2013 Pick ’em Contest Update

FootballIt’s your weekly reminder to get your picks in for the Pick ‘em Contest.

Here are the updated top five standings:

Rank Pick Set Name Total Pts W-L
1 buckeye lad 84 84-59
2 Phil my nuts Go Bucks 79 79-64
3 Urban Meyer Wieners 74 74-69
4 buckeye nation 73 73-70
5 Josh 71 71-72

The top 5 remain unchanged but Buckeye Mania and enderbuck are nipping at the top 5’s heels.

It’s not too late to join, but time is definitely running out (Seriously, like really running out. Like, it’s probably too late but you can try). (I believe) you can still join the league:
Yahoo’s Fantasy College Pick’em:
Group ID: 11226
Password: buckeyes

The prize package includes:
$25 Amazon.com gift certificate
An 11×14″ Framed Copy of Braxton Miller’s SI cover from SICovers.com.
SI_OSU
… and more…

Q&A with a San Diego State Blogger

This week I had the opportunity to discuss the upcoming game with DavidSDSU of SanDiegoSportsDomination.com You can check out the link to see his in depth preview for tomorrows game and the questions he asked me and my responses.

MotSaG: In 2005 the Aztecs ran their first possession in for a touchdown and you could hear a pin drop right when it happened (I was there) are you hoping to quiet the ‘Shoe again?

SDSDomintation: If we are able to quiet the Shoe that would greatly improve the Aztecs chance at winning the game.

MotSaG: Is there going to be a hangover effect from last weeks loss?

SDSDomintation: There will be no hangover from last weeks loss. The Aztecs have not been known as a team that keeps lingering thoughts about their last game (during our winning era). The Aztecs will bring there best game into Ohio and will come out fighting against Ohio State.
[Read more...]

Q&A with a Buffalo Bulls Blogger

So I decided to try and do something a little different for you readers and thought lets see what the opponents bloggers think about the upcoming game. I know we will have previews of the players, break down their plays and all that fun stuff we like to read about. I am hoping this will continue into a weekly series with each opponent the Buckeyes face this year.

I reached out to the University of Buffalo fans to see who I could get in touch with to possibly do this and a great gentleman from ubbullrun.com by the name of BrandedBull emailed me and we went from there. I would like to thank BrandedBull for taking time out and answering some questions that I came up with. Being this is the first time doing this I couldn’t think of all the questions I wanted to ask so hopefully I will get better with each one.

MotSag: How exciting is it to watch one of the best linebackers in the nation, Khalil Mack, each week?

ubbullrun: It has been an absolute pleasure to see a player of Mack’s Caliber thrive in Buffalo. For a player to have zero Division 1 offers to grow brings great pride to a fan base who has not had much to cheer for the past three years. Buffalo is starting to place players in the NFL, with Josh Thomas in Carolina, Trevor Scott and Steve Means in Tampa Bay, Naaman Roosevelt in Cleveland, and James Starks in Green Bay. It will be fun to see how Khalil Mack performs on Sundays. The last big player we had with high draft aspirations was James Starks who won a Super Bowl with Green Bay missed his entire senior campaign in Buffalo (and missed many games in Green Bay!) I just hope Khalil stays healthy and has a monster season.

[Read more...]

MotSaG on the Radio

Our very own Jeremiah was on Canadian Radio this morning on CJAD 800, joining Rick Moffat to discuss the recent signing of Troy Smith to the Montreal Allouettes.

They discuss why Troy might be signing with a CFL team and Rick brings up an interesting tidbit about another former Ohio State quarterback trying to win a starting position with the Allouettes.

You can listen to the segment here:

Happy Fourth of July from Men of the Scarlet and Gray

Red White and Boom 2007 - Columbus, OH

Have a safe, enjoyable and relaxing holiday with friends and family. (Don’t blow any fingers off with an errant crap-flapper)

Seven Years!

This past Saturday, June 22nd, marked the seventh anniversary of the launch of this here little OSU blog site, Men of the Scarlet and Gray.

(Just for reference to how old MotSaG is, the freshmen joing the OSU football team this fall were in the fourth or fifth grade when MotSaG was launched. Twitter didn’t exist. At least we had YouTube.)

In that time, we’ve watched a Heisman Trophy winner grow up right before us, we’ve seen on of the most amazing human specimen to grace a Buckeye uniform, have watched a stiff-arm become a meme, saw the Buckeyes assume their rightful position as Rose Bowl Champs, and got the SEC monkey off their back (no matter WHAT the NCAA says, that game happened and you can not take that away from us).

Unfortunately, we also had to watch a legend fall from grace but along with that, got to watch a phoenix rise from his ashes.

Oh, we’ve also been on a couple amazing NCAA tournament runs, too. A couple Final Fours ain’t too shabby. This was pretty great (see also: here and here).

Oh, and this happened in that time, too:

GAHHHHH

We shared this Ted Ginn Jr. Highlight film in our first post, and I feel it’s only appropriate that we share it here again, for old-times sake, to remember how blessed we Buckeye fans have been in the 21st century, and to remember how badly Ted Ginn and company deserved that title in 2006. He did not deserve to go out like this.

Those teams of Ted, Troy and Gonzo were something special. I have a feeling Urban has been amassing a group of kids that are going to make Ted Ginn Jr. look like he was running in molasses.