As was pointed out by a previous poster (Thanks Dan), football is king in Columbus; and by football, I mean The Ohio State Buckeyes. In my first season of exposure to the OSU football experience, I can assure anyone who questions this notion: It is true! This fact has presented me with an interesting situation (or predicament, if you will).
You see, I was born 200 miles east of Columbus in the town of Morgantown, West Virginia. Not only is it my hometown though, it also happens to be the home of the West Virginia University Mountaineers. To add fuel to the fire, I also spent five wonderful years studying finance at WVU during my undergraduate education. As most would assume, I am a big Mountaineer fan.
Prior to enrolling in the Fisher College of Business, I had no preconceived ill feelings toward the Buckeyes. I had never gone out of my way to cheer for them either, though. In fact, I never went out of my way to cheer particularly hard for anyone but my beloved Mountaineers. So as I accepted my offer to attend the Ohio State University in early 2012, I realized a transformation was necessary. I was going to have to adopt a second team, and I was going to become a Buckeye. Some diehards may scoff at me, and say there is no way I can be a true fan after passing only one football season in Columbus (Is that you again, Dan?), but I am giving it a go.
I began by adding a few articles of red to my wardrobe, and upon arrival in Columbus invested in a “Block O” doormat. I even bought an Ohio State chair for my apartment (okay maybe that was a bit over the top). Living on the 9th floor of River Watch Tower and having a perfect view of the new scoreboard at the Horseshoe (which played old OSU football games for three weeks straight) helped too. But there was still one BIG piece of the puzzle missing: my first game. So after doing some research on current players and the 2012-2013 team, I bought my first ticket OSU football ticket. The Buckeyes would be squaring off against the mighty Knights of Central Florida (maybe a slight exaggeration).
In hindsight, the game was an amazing experience; from the tailgates to the in-game experience. The Fisher MBAs always put together a tailgate at Fisher Commons that is open to Fisher graduate students (food and “beverages” for $5). The tailgate is also a short walk from The Horseshoe (stadium) that leads you through a sea of tailgates (perfect pre-game build-up for my first game).
After all of the hype and all of the build-up, The Ohio State Buckeyes did not disappoint. Watching from Block “O” (the south side student section), I was wowed by Braxton Miller & Co. as they stuck it to an overmatched UCF. There was an atmosphere worthy of the team it surrounded too. The student section stayed enthusiastic throughout the game (letting UCF know exactly how they felt about them) and the rest of the crowd managed to remain interactive, even as OSU pulled away from their lesser opponent. It was an experience I will not forget.
All in all, I am excited about having a second team. Call me BuckEer? A MountainBuck? Maybe not, but I do know red and blue look just fine together, and I can’t help but let a new personal motto run through my head: The more football, the merrier!