Every year, the same thing happens to this Buckeye fan. I fumble through my life after the New Year and put football on a bit of a back burner. As we close in on the upcoming football season, I first look to year’s gone past, and enjoy “my” rich history as a football fan. I fondly remember “our” big wins, and kick a nun holding a puppy while I lament “our” horrible losses. With each passing day of the wasteland that is the off-season, my anticipation of the season rises.
Then I get Oregon State.
At no point watching this game did I think there was any chance in holy hell that the Buckeyes would lose. I tried to ratchet up the excitement. I made the comment that our “new coach” looks like 6 win Fickell. I cackled as “our” defense gave up quick touchdowns to lowly Oregon State. It could be said I faked an “Oh no”. I knew damn well the Buckeyes were winning, without trying.
And that’s my problem with college football overall, and rooting for the Buckeyes in general. Yes, this is a bit of a “it sucks to be beautiful” post, but I only get a couple games each year to look forward to, and this one wasn’t it. “We” get TCU on the 15th, which should be fun, I guess. Sadly, no one will sing praises if OSU knocks them off, and it will be tragedy if the Bucks drop it (for Bucks fans, you saps that hate us for being beautiful will oil up and roll around in monopoly money if “we” lose to TCU). Most likely we’ll get dirges when the Buckeyes “only” win by 10.
In reality, I really only get the chance of enjoying a victory a handful of times each season, and I am ok with that. “I” can lose any game, even ones when “we” win. That’s my problem. Since we are in the playoff era, I want a concrete criteria for entering the playoffs. Instead of fretting close wins, I want a world where conference champions get the automatic bid. I also want a world where style points matter, and there are a few spots left for teams that look good, but for whatever reason didn’t win their conference. In short, I want my cake, and I want to eat it, too.
I want to root for my team to win games in a structured environment, like the conference, where there are very distinct criterion for making it to the playoffs. I also want to live in the old world, where style points matter. I don’t think that is asking too much, even though this season is a quasi mix-match hodgepodge of a selection process. I’ll tune in Saturday to watch OSU probably destroy Rutgers, knowing the win means nothing, other than it wasn’t a loss. I just wish it counted toward a conference championship and win and your in.