Yep, you heard it here first, over the last decade we have in fact lost bowl games, three of them being BCS games. Within those three, two of the games we lost were for the National Championship. That’s right, we lost two chances at a football made of crystal, and one we lost very, very badly. I don’t care to mention the vacated win against Arkansas, because we didn’t lose that game ( I was there, 3rd row, trust me, we won), we vacated it. That game doesn’t exist in the books of The Ohio State University, but this isn’t The Matrix, trust me, it happened. Back to the point of our losses, the actual losses, and what those losses cost us.
The first loss, and easily most painful, came after the incredible 2006 season which saw our Buckeyes go undefeated in the regular season. That season was capped with a #1 vs. #2 match up against Michigan, the true game of the century. Don’t give me that LSU vs. Alabama bullshit, those games were boring, and the majority of the country really didn’t have a single f— to give when it came to watching the rematch. This was a 42-39 shootout that took until the very last seconds to decide who would play for that football named after a champagne… sorta. We went on to watch Ted Ginn run back the opening kickoff, only to then watch a cataclysmic implosion of our beloved team. The final score, 41-14, and it could have been worse.
The next loss came the very next year, again for that glass oblong thing. After a late season loss to Illinois, not many people thought we would be there, or should be there. But, there we were in New Orleans, trying to win a title we thought was ours a year previous, and there we failed again 38-24.
Our final loss in a BCS game came against Texas back in the desert the very next year. I was at this game, it came down to the end, and a blown coverage and excellent drive later we lose 24-21. I sat next to John Cooper on the plane ride home, and he agreed we had in fact lost 3 BCS bowl games in a row.
Now you may be asking, “WHY Ryan are you calling for us to recount these games?”
Simply put, it’s because we lost to who we lost to. We lost to Florida, LSU and Texas. Three powerhouse teams at the height of their awesomeness. We didn’t lose to Louisville handily in embarrassing fashion like FLOLrida just did this season. We didn’t lose to an underdog Boise State on some crap trick plays that seemed to work every single time they tried them like Oklahoma. We sure as hell didn’t lost to a South Carolina team that lost by 33 to the same Florida team that just got smacked by Louisville now did we, Michigan?
We’re not Wisconsin, getting more roses handed to them on a silver platter than a call girl in the south (southern hospitality, y’all), only to have them wilt under the pressure. We’re not even the ’08 Alabama squad that let Utah cap off their ever-unlikely undefeated season in the Sugar Bowl.
We lost to Florida, LSU and Texas.
People may forget who we’ve beaten. We won that polished plastic-ish looking lemon back in January of 2003 against “The U.” A team no one though we would beat, in a game seldom forgotten. Back to the dessert the very next year for a win against the Big 12 champ Kansas State. Fiesta Bowl #3 in a row let us shut up the Brady Quinn/Charlie Doughnut combo against Notre Dame. Maybe they forget the schalacking we put on an Oregon team that was supposed to be the best team in the country in the Rose Bowl. Then there was the Sugar Bowl that “didn’t happen.”
So why all the hate? Why all the trash talk? I can tell you that if your team went to 3 National Title games in 10 years, but it would only win one, you’d be pretty damn OK with that. Anyone would. Hell, we aren’t. We bring this upon ourselves and frankly I enjoy it. If we get shit for losing to those three teams then so be it. That means we’re better than you, that our expectations are higher, that we are who we think we are. We’re not OK with 8-5 seasons because we lost to good teams because we’re not OK with 12-1 seasons when we lost to one great team. I sit here this season and watch the games we can’t take part in, watching teams lose games they shouldn’t and lose to some they should in embarrassing fashion. None will get they long term criticism, because few deserve. The ones who deserve it, are the ones who expect it. Next bowl season will come sooner than you think, the Buckeyes will be there, and we’ll be ready to Embrace The Hate.