Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Game

The Rotunda

The game was at 3:30 in the afternoon, so after some intense bike touring in the morning, Kurt and I had some time to check out what these Midwesterners call tailgating. This was one of the main things I was excited about seeing at Ohio State and being able to compare it to Auburn. But really...there isn't much comparison. I will say that the tailgates I saw were pretty extensive with food, drinks, tvs, and more cornhole than you can imagine. They just lack the sheer magnitude that Auburn tailgating entails. In Columbus, tailgating is mainly done with your RV or bus and is contained in this dull little parking lot completely detached from all the action of the stadium. In Auburn, I feel like fans descend on campus Friday afternoon and claim every bit of open space they can find--the closer to Jordan-Hare the better. I can't wait to show Kurt the mayhem in Auburn!

Our main goal in our tailgating exploration was to find the Eleven Warriors outpost. These guys write a football ball blog that Kurt reads religiously and had announced they would be hanging out and would love to meet their readers. We went, had some free food, and had a taste of some really good beer brewed by these OSU fans in Chicago. Everyone I met was incredibly nice--I venture to say even more friendly than Southerners.

I was also completely amused by the difference in gameday attire. I only spotted one sun dress (and she was a Miami fan) and I think a guy in a suit would have looked laughably out of place. No one dresses up! Not only do they not get fancy for games, but there is a strict adherence to an Ohio State logo t-shirt or jersey. I don't even think a red sweater would fly! This lends itself to a booming graphic t-shirt business. I saw so many different ones! There were few repeats but we spotted tons on Homage shirts. I guess the same way a girl in Auburn takes pleasure in finding the perfect orange or blue dress, all those lady Buckeye's enjoy picking a unique t-shirt that no one else has? I just don't get it.

Kurt and I were just in time to catch the Skull Session where the band (also known as The Best Damn Band in the Land) holds a pep rally before each game. We got to see the football team walk through right at the beginning. I was a bit shorter than the crowd but Kurt got a glimpse of the coach and star quarterback.

This is for you, Joey Fante. They had a contest going where you could win the chance to get married in Ohio Stadium! Why couldn't Jordan-Hare have done this back in April?!

As game time drew closer, we headed into the stadium and set up post on the inside of the Rotunda so we could watch the band enter the stadium. These friendly Buckeyes let me stand right on the rail so I could get a good view. They were so excited that it was my first game (in Columbus, that is). I stood next to this sweet old lady who works at the stadium. She was all decked out in her scarlet and grey and told me about all their traditions while we waited on the band.


One of my favorite things is the Script Ohio. Our seats were waaaaay off in the other direction but the guards were nice enough to let Kurt and I hang out here to watch it because he wanted me to see it right side up :) See! So nice!

And Jen Fante, this one is for you! Rascal Flats sang the national anthem at the beginning of the game. I kept waiting anxiously for the jet fly-over at the end of the song, but alas, Ohio State isn't as awesome as Auburn :)

Our view. 3 rows from the top!

Silvia is from California, a place which doesn't appreciate football in such a widespread fashion as, say, Ohio or Alabama. She was still super excited for the trip. Before we left Brooklyn, Erik even gave her a crash course on the rules. I think she caught on quite well.

Look at that sky!

Luckily we were prepared with fancy Ohio State ponchos!

The rain didn't last too long and eventually the clouds parted and the sun came back out. Just in time for Ohio State to win the game! The Buckeye's beat the Miami Hurricanes 36-24. I don't remember the finer points of the game but it was fun to watch it with really excited fans. They're never satisfied though! They always find some nit-picky thing to complain about. While they adore the coach, Jim Tressel, they always have issues with him and his style of playing. You just won! Be happy!

Anyway, after the game--win or lose--the team has this tradition (started by Tressel) where they sing Carmen Ohio with the band. It's quite touching. It may have even brought tears to a certain person's eyes. I'm not telling who...

Waiting around at the end of the game to see the band exit the field (we wanted the full experience!). Go Bucks!

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