In this installment of "Everything You Wanted to Know About Ohio State
" I ask Ohio State fan Noah Litton,
Oregon fans are obviously jacked for the Rose Bowl because it's the first visit by the Ducks in 15 years. Given that Ohio State is more accustomed recently to playing in the national championship game, how would you characterize Buckeye fans' state of mind about this year's Rose Bowl?
Here's Noah's answer:
I think most Buckeye fans feel a mixture of pride, relief, and nostalgia in playing for this year's Rose Bowl.
The general consensus at the beginning of the season was that it would be a 10-2 year with likely losses coming to USC and Penn State. Not many people felt this would be a championship year, and the early struggles on offense only reinforced that feeling.
The bitter loss
at Purdue compounded matters, and the Buckeye blogosphere lit up with doomsday scenarios for the rest of the season. That the Buckeyes righted the ship and won out down the stretch to earn a fifth consecutive Big Ten Title was a statement in itself, so I think most fans feel justifiably proud to be in the Rose Bowl.
Ohio State is a program rich in history,
and much of that history involves the Rose Bowl.
No coach has embraced the historical side of Buckeye football quite like Jim Tressel. He “gets” the Big Ten, he “gets” how important the rivalry with Michigan
is, and he “gets” all the little nuances that make our program tick.
So it might come as a surprise that this will be his first Rose Bowl since taking the helm in 2001. I can only imagine how effective he will be in motivating the players for this, the “Granddaddy of them all.”
I think fans are more than ready to head back to Pasadena. It has been 13 years since Ohio State has played in the Rose Bowl, and there is a strong sense of goodwill towards this bowl for preserving some sense of history in its traditional pairing of Big Ten/Pac 10 champions.
Buckeye fans might also feel burnt out with Phoenix and the Fiesta Bowl having played there in 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2009, so I think we will travel even stronger than usual.
I know we sold out our 25,000 tickets
during the pre-sale period, and I read that another 1,000 went up for auction on the public sight – only to sell out within ten minutes.
It isn't the National Championship, but I don't think you will hear many complaints from Columbus this year. The Rose Bowl is such an incredible stage, and Oregon presents a worthy opponent against whom Ohio State can regain some of its national credibility.