Leap Of Faith

This might seem like an odd place to talk about this, as it has nothing to do with Ohio State or the Big Ten or Brady Hoke’s waistline. This is way more important than those things. This is about kids–young athletes who just want a chance to make it in college football, an entity that has become an enormous star-making, money-printing machine powered by the passion of students, alumni, and fans.

This is about terrible people who exploit that passion, who take advantage of those kids, who make a mockery of the sport we love.

First and foremost, read this: Are There Two Fake Schools Operating On The Periphery of CFB? This was posted by reddit user /u/Honestly_ to /r/cfb on Friday. Many of you have probably seen it, but for those of you who haven’t, please go read it. You don’t have to read all the comments, but read through Honestly’s write-up and check out the links he provides. This is crazy, shocking stuff.

It’s important right now, because ESPN posted a story the same day about a new NCAA defensive record set by D-II Tusculum College. The school they set that record against is the College of Faith, one of the two schools Honestly investigated. Do we want the record books rewritten against programs that aren’t connected to legitimate institutes of higher learning?

While Honestly raises the possibility that the “student” athletes may be complicit in this (possibly getting paid since they wouldn’t be subject to any regulation,) I’m more inclined to think that’s not the case. The schools seem set up specifically to target the unsuspecting and naive, using religion as a hook in the way politicians and televangelists often do. The admissions requirements are non-existent. There are nonrefundable fees and “tuition deposits.” There are charges for adding and dropping courses. One the schedules implies that three of the games will be televised by ESPN, but this is pretty obviously a lie.

Davidson College played College of Faith on August 30th. The shutout victory was Davidson’s first win since November of 2012 and their first by more than eight points since September of 2011. Davidson plays in the Division I-FCS Pioneer League, the same conference that houses the University of Dayton’s football program. While it’s unlikely that an FBS school would schedule a game with one of these “colleges,” it’s concerning that they have managed to get on the field with a Div-I program, even one that’s not very good.

While I personally think these organizations should be thoroughly investigated and immediately shut down, I understand that’s probably unlikely. At the very least, I hope this serves as a cautionary tale for young athletes looking for an opportunity to show their stuff at the next level.

Football: Coaching with Urban Meyer Weeks 1&2

Since this is my last semester at The Ohio State University, I knew I had to find the class about which I had heard since freshman year: the football coaching class, taught by the football coach. The night before I scheduled, I happened to be at a friend’s house, and one of his roommates was looking for the class as well. Once we found the official class number, I knew I had to add it to my schedule for the fall semester.

The class meets at 7:30 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, meaning I have to wake up around 6:15 to get ready and then drive over to get there before 7:25 (you don’t want to be late to this class). The class has met twice this semester, and Coach Stan Jefferson, Director of Player Development, and Coach Hiram A. de Fries, Football Administrative Assistant to the Head Coach, have been in class both days. Coach Meyer came in and spoke for about 20-30 minutes each day. We haven’t gotten into football play and the like yet, as it’s mainly been lessons on motivation and, as Coach Meyer says, “how to build a great team.” Coach Meyer did, however, teach us about the “Buckeye Plan To Win.” (If you would like to read further on the plan to win, here is an article about it from when Coach Meyer came to Ohio State.)

  1. Play Great Defense
  2. Turnovers
  3. Score in the Red Zone
  4. Win the Kicking Game

There isn’t much more to say about this class as of yet, though I can tell you there will be some exciting things. I have to scout a high school game on offense and defense, write two practice reports (one of which will be an OSU practice report), and we’ll soon start learning about individual position play. Coach Meyer isn’t slated on the syllabus to teach another class. Rather, we have each position coach teaching their position. For example, Linebacker Play will be taught by Coach Fickell, QB Play and the Pass Attack taught by Coach Herman, and so on. This should be a great class, and hopefully I’ll be able to transfer some of the knowledge on football scouting, position play, and game planning on to the fine readers of Men of the Scarlet and Gray. Go Bucks.

Fear Not Buckeye Fans: Make Some Money Back [Guest Post]

(This is a guest post from Korey M. from Roomer Travel. This post will be of interest to those of you who may have booked a trip to Pasadena early (oops!))

O-H!!!

As we all know, our Buckeyes are not heading to Pasadena… Instead, Auburn and Florida State will be there. For us Buckeye fans, we are now working on our travel plans in reaching Miami (where we will have redemption when defeating Clemson).

I don’t know about everyone else, but I had quite a few friends who went about booking hotel rooms for the National Championship this year, assuming it would be our Buckeyes competing. Well, as said earlier, plans changed. We WILL be in a bowl game, the Orange Bowl. But what to do about those rooms we booked in Pasadena? Most of the reservations were non-refundable, leaving us stuck with a hotel room that we can’t use.

Luckily for us die-hard Buckeye fans (and maybe other fans as well) there is a website that exists to help with such situations. Roomer Travel allows people to post their hotel reservations when they are not able to use them, then others who are looking to travel can buy those rooms!

Although the optimal outcome would have been to use our reservations in seeing the Buckeyes beat up Jameis Winston and taking home the National Championship, this is a close second. Now we are given an opportunity to sell our Pasadena rooms to Seminole and Tiger fans. Then we can use that money to book new rooms in Miami for the Orange Bowl. Here’s to hoping we can all make it to Miami!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! GO BUCKS!

www.roomertravel.com

MotSaG’s 2013 Pick ’em Contest Winner Announcement

FootballIt’s time to announce the winner of MotSaG’s 2013 Regular Season Pick ‘em Contest:

And you winner (drum roll, please) is…

Buckeye Lad (aka Danny!)

We would all like to give Danny a huge pat on the back and a hearty handshake and tell him congrats on his victory.

Danny’s record of 154-131 is certainly nothing to scoff at. We’ll be sending Danny his prize package, a nice $25 Amazon.com gift certificate that can be used in the upcoming MotSaG Amazon Gift Guide and an 11×14″ Framed Copy of Braxton Miller’s SI cover from SICovers.com.

SI_OSU

Thanks to everyone who participated and we hope to do this again next year.

Also, a huge thanks to SICovers.com for providing this fantastic gift for us. We want everyone to visit their site, patronize their business and send everyone on your gift list a beautifully framed Sports Illustrated cover. (Preferably one with a Buckeye gracing it)

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 140 140-114
2 Phil my nuts Go Bucks 138 138-116
3 buckeye nation 131 131-123
4 Urban Meyer Wieners 131 131-123
5 Buckeye Mania 122 122-132

These guys are in the driver’s seat for the prize package. 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…

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 105 105-77
2 Phil my nuts Go Bucks 99 99-83
3 Josh 99 99-83
4 buckeye nation 94 94-88
5 Urban Meyer Wieners 92 92-90

Josh makes a huge leap in week 9, hitting on 15 of 20 picks to jump up to a tie with Phil my nuts. Urban Meyer’s Wieners hold on fifth place is looking tenuous at best at this point.

At this point, it’s probably too late to join, but if you’re just looking to test your mettle against the spread, (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…

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 92 92-70
2 Phil my nuts Go Bucks 88 88-74
3 Urban Meyer Wieners 84 84-78
4 buckeye nation 84 84-78
5 Josh 83 83-79

The top 5 remain unchanged, with buckeyelad and Urban Meyer’s Wieners tied for third.

At this point, it’s probably too late to join, but if you’re just looking to test your mettle against the spread, (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 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…]

Three Yards and a Cloud of Links

Good morning Buckeye Nation.

T. V. Time: The Big Ten Network made a couple of announcements with regards to Ohio State Women’s Soccer and the Buckeyes Women’s Field Hockey teams.

The Big Ten Network will televise the regular season final match between the Buckeyes and the Northwestern Wildcats being played in Evanston, Ill on November 1st at 3pm. Ohio State will be having seven returning starters and seven newcomers on this years squad. They report for practice tomorrow and have a scrimmage against Miami at 4pm August 22 at Buckeyes Varsity Field.

The Buckeye women’s soccer team who begin season play on August 23th against Morehead State in Columbus will have three matches televised on BTN. The games against Indiana at 3pm on September 26th, at Wisconsin at 12:30pm October 6th and a 3pm match at Penn State on October 17th. The Buckeyes will have seven returning starters from a team that finished second in Big Ten regular season play last year and they also won the B1G tournament. You can see the women’s soccer team play an exhibition game against Miami on Friday in Columbus.

Rankings: The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Coaches preseason Top 25 poll came out yesterday. The Big Ten has the most teams in the current rankings with your Ohio State Women’s Team having a presean ranking of 23. The conference looks to be very strong this season with Penn State (2), Minnesota (6), Michigan (7), Nebraska (10), Michigan State (14), and Purdue (16) all in the Top 25. The Buckeyes open the season at the NIU Invitational August 30-31st in Dekalb, Ill.

August Starts: Other Ohio State sports that will begin this month besides The Ohio State Football who open the season on August 31st at the ‘Shoe against Buffalo at 12pm is the Men and Women’s Cross Country teams. The Buckeye runners will take part in the Flyer 5k Challenge in Kettering, Ohio. Also the Men’s Soccer team will have three exhibition matches this month with the first one in Morgantown West Virginia against the Mountaineers on the 18th at 3pm.

Getting excited to see all the various teams wearing the Scarlet and Gray starting their action in their respected sports. Good luck to all the Buckeyes hope everyone has a great and safe season.

Until next time Buckeye Nation…

I am a Survivor

(This post has nothing to do with sports but deals with men’s health, I feel its an important topic and I wanted to share my story with you)

I woke up this morning feeling reminiscent but couldn’t put a finger on why. As I’m laying there slowly waking up there’s this nagging in the back of my head that I’m forgetting something, something important. Realizing there’s no way I can fall back asleep I jump out of bed to start my day. After getting dressed I grabbed my phone, wake it from its sleeping state and I see it. The date says July 27th, 2013. Like a brick smacking me in the face I have finally figured out what was so important that I have forgotten.

Before I realize what was so important I’m going to take you back in time for a little trip. Follow me won’t you. The year is 2006 and everything was going great in my life. Great job, awesome girlfriend who I would marry and good friends all around me. I’m starting to notice that I’m feeling kind of sick and run down more and more as each day passes. Also feeling pain in my abdominal area that’s not real high on the pain threshold but is nagging and getting more and more noticeable. I go to the doctor get some tests done but can’t figure out what’s exactly wrong. None of this makes any sense I know my body the doctor doesn’t and I’m being told basically its in my head.

Fighting through whatever this phantom thing that is happening to me, it is now the Summer of 2007. I’m at my wits end on why the pain in my abdominal area is getting stronger so much so that its affecting my work. At this time I’m a garbage man and every time I’m lifting I feel this nagging pain get stronger and stronger. Mind you all through this time I have noticed one of my testicles wasn’t feeling right but I was shrugging this off to be part of the phantom pain and tiredness I was feeling, plus it is embarrassing to have another man feel your package so I kept quiet. My girlfriend finally stepped in and said she had had enough of this and if I didn’t go to the doctor and have him check out my testicle she was going to drag me in there and do it. Well what’s more embarrassing now just tell the doctor or having your girlfriend dragging you. I chose to tell him.

During the exam I explain to the doctor I have been feeling discomfort in my left testicle and have noticed it feels like there are now two in there instead of one and starting to feel really hard. I get the old please drop your drawers lets have a look. Oh boy is this the most uncomfortable thing to go through (turns out no, more later). He feels around and and says I’m not liking this at all and he takes that light the use to look in your ears and mouth and shines it underneath. Yup this is what I feared you might have cancer see how the light is not coming through its all dark. I said yes. He then takes the light to under the right one and there’s this pink glow like when you take a flashlight and put it under your hand. This is what it is suppose to look like i’m going to schedule you for ultrasound and we will go from there.

Hmm An ultrasound doesn’t sound that painful, no pain involved since no needles how bad can this be. Well this is where being really really uncomfortable begins. You get dressed up in your little hospital gown, they have you lay on the table. You see the machine and you think to yourself this is going to be easy. Then the nurse walks in and she’s a looker, Houston we may have a problem. I have never prayed so much as to be courteous and professional and keep my manhood at bay. The problem arises if someone is playing with your junk other things happen they just do its uncontrollable. I am sweating feeling so uncomfortable but being on my best and doing a good job. The saving grace I believe is all that gel that dump on you. Finally the exam is over I won the battle, played it cool, no excitement i’m a professional! OK sir go ahead and stand up clean yourself off and get dressed after I leave the room. I’m super happy nothing happened, I get up and it felt like i was wearing a 55 gallon drum of this gel on me seemed to take forever to get it cleaned off and even then didn’t get it all until I showered. Sending me home she tells me they will send to the doctor I should find something out in a week I believe this is a Tuesday.

After work on Friday’s a bunch of friends and myself go up to a local watering hole to celebrate the end of a hard work week. Enjoying the company, debating sports telling stories of what we encountered during the week and just joking around. My phone rings, I look down at it and its my doctor. I excuse myself and answer the call. He tells me the ultrasound tests came back not a hundred percent certain but it does look like cancer and already have an appointment set up with the best urologist for next week. I go back to my friends and they see something is disturbing me so I tell them the news. No way it can be cancer buddy probably just something minor don’t worry about it. You know guys your probably right let me not bring this fun down forget I said anything. Now I know my friends were very concerned for me and trying to take my mind off of the news and I was happy they did.

The next week rolls around and my appointment is on a Wednesday, I rush over there right after work. Feeling a little nervous wondering whats lying ahead of me here and what we are going to do. After filling out all that fun paperwork every doctor has you fill out they put me back in the little room. Sitting in this room I look around and there is all kinds of stuff about getting checked out and early detection is the best cure for cancer. Now I’m getting scared if it is cancer did we catch it early am I to late? Seems like eternity before the door opens and the doctor comes in. He reaches out his hand for the traditional handshake tells me his name and the says “You have cancer”. What are you kidding me you don’t ease into this you just blurt out I have cancer. I’m stunned, knew it was a possibility but until you hear those words you have no idea how to react. All I remember is everything went black after hearing this. I knew he was still talking to me I could see his mouth moving but I couldn’t hear, feel, sense, think of anything. He was asking me a question and realized I wasn’t there. He said my name a few times and snapped me back to reality. He asks if I’m OK told him yes I was just a little stunned felt like I was getting punched in the gut. He says I don’t want to do a biopsy for risking it possibly spreading in the bloodstream just want to go in and remove the testicle itself then we will have that tested and go from there. OK sounds like a plan to me. He wants to do this on July 21st, I ask if this is so serious that it has to be that date or can we postpone it for a few cause that is my birthday. He looks at my chart and says sorry didn’t notice that lets go for the 27th.

On July 27th, 2007 I became cancer free after the removal of my left testicle. I had to have follow up radiation for like two months while I worked and that was no picnic. But in the end I was lucky because I listened to my girlfriend (now life saving wife) and had caught this early. I can tell you that any pain i feel anywhere in my body scares me wondering if it has come back. This is not something that anyone tells you. It is always in the back of your mind. Being a survivor is awesome and I’m lucky it was only Stage I testicular cancer and my body is cancer free now. My mind will always resort to what if its cancer and it sucks, can’t get rid of it but I’ll take it since I get to wake up and enjoy the sun rising and spending time with my family and friends. If I would have just kept ignoring it that blackness I felt after the doctor told me would be eternal not just a few moments like it was. Remember if something doesn’t feel right, look right get it checked out.