Yesterday it felt like winter in Columbus as the temperature fell 10 degrees to below 50F. Wind and cold rain swept across the street. However, in such a chilly first day of October, I was surprised by the full Ohio Stadium. Is football really so important that people would give up their warm houses and get soaked?
Actually, this is my second football game experience. Last time I was late by 40 minutes and exposed to the direct sunlight; this time I stayed in a building so I only watched half of the game. The rain cooled my enthusiasm toward football. On my way to the football game, I saw people wearing scarlet raincoats heading to the parking lot. These small groups of people further surprised me. If they watched the game when it was raining, why did they leave at the end of second quarter?
Upon my arrival in Ohio Stadium, I looked up at the scoreboard. The score was far from satisfying. The Michigan State University fans were more fervent than fans of the home team. Maybe we Buckeyes were just disappointed by the performance of our team. They missed too many catches. Accompanied with “Ouch” from all directions, I also felt at a loss. After only a month in Ohio, I developed a strong sense of belonging here. We have a united community.
As time went by, the sense of disappointment grew and turned into anger. OSU was making more mistakes. People started to shout “Take away his scholarship!” Suddenly, I understood, in some sense, people pay for the game in the way of tickets. The words were a little disrespectful, but really made sense – if you pay to get into the stadium, you want to see a good game.
The ballgame was about to end and we were behind with a shameful score of 0 – 10. The audience became silent and left at a faster pace. However, in the last minute, OSU scored. It happened so fast that I did not realize it until I saw the replay. The cheers lasted a few minutes, like grasping at straws. People started to expect a turnover at the very last minute, but the result remained: we lost. Unlike the previous game vs Colorado \, the game ended with silence – only MSU fans were singing all the way out of the stadium.