Wow, what a victory. ES made the trip with Big Bob, Keith, and Seth - a bunch of old State fraternity guys on the best road trip ever to witness a big-time Spartan victory. The ES was extremely confident going into this game, and was boasting of the Big Green to plenty of Buckeyes and Spartans at the Colts Grille, the outdoor beer plaza, and the Slippery Noodle.
And, man-oh-man was it cold at the beer plaza. Like, zero degrees cold. Just brutal, booger-freezing cold. Let's talk some about the Buckeye fans before and after the game. First, off, the ES never heard this song before, "We don't give a damn about the whole state of Michigan, cause we're from O-HI-O"... la de da. The ES heard it all night long Friday night, especially at the beer plaza underneath the heating lamps (which worked very well, but only if you were within 1 feet). But, what is strange is the song is all about hating Michigan/Michigan State/Michigan Tech/Univ of Detroit/Ferris State/etc. instead of praising Ohio State. Methinks if you write and sing a song about another, it means you care more about winning than you care about your own school. It lacks, well, cooth. However, at the time, I thought it was fine, mainly because I was too damn cold to give a crap.
When we popped into different pubs, the Ohio Staters we met were really friendly. I mean, down right nice. Maybe because they nearly always kick our butt, and they were confident at #2 they were going to walk over the Spartans into the national title game. But, the ES had some great conversations. Notably, even after the Spartans won, going into a few of the pubs, the Buckeye faithful agreed we were the better team and Michigan State deserved the victory.
On game day, after waiting 90 minutes for a cab, and taking a 45 minute cab ride (SUCKED, even the Sloth beat us downtown by an hour), we arrived around 2 pm and did all the B1G Ten stuff. When we went to the MSU pep rally (photo below), it was filled with Ohio Staters.... that was an early sign of things to come. Right outside the Big Ten studio within the convention center, there were people lined up to get an autograph from former MSU QB Jim Miller; the ES asked Miller for a chest-bump, was turned down, and ended up back-bumping Miller. It was cool; not sure if he liked it, but harmless. We saw some dude wearing Ohio State gear run a timed 4.37-40. That was amazing. I think the ES ran a 6.05-40 in his loafers (or was it 6.45, 6.75? whatever)? Fun.
|Big Bob cheers on the Big Green with Sloth (at right) in a sea of red|
at Spartan Pep Rally
We did our best to buy tickets to microbrews at the beer plaza and slug them down before the game. The B1G shut down one end, and then the other, about 2 hours before kickoff. They didn't give any slack. Bummer is I still have 2 beer tickets left. Oh well, I didn't need anymore. But, it was really really cold. I mean, like the night before, 10 degrees cold. The lines to get into the stadium were very long, and while organized it just seemed lethargic... methinks the Big Ten can do a better job opening up more doors and processes to get fans in earlier. Maybe even provide promotions to get people into the game earlier?
At the game... the ES walked in, and it was an 80% Buckeye crowd. That's when I realized what a treat of a game: NOW WE GOTTA WIN. We had to stick it to the ugliest coach in the land, Urban Meyer. Michigan State had to be the team to beat the Buckeye undefeated streak. The Spartans had to beat up on the confident Buckeye Nation which came to Indianapolis expecting to be anointed and head to a National Title, expecting Michigan State as only a roadbump. And, we needed to beat these cheaters which vacated their victories from tattoo-gate and cost the Spartans a trip to Pasadena in 2010. The ES got to thinking:
Paybacks are hell.
Furthermore, the Spartans had to win after this "downright nice" fanbase turned sour within the stadium. From kickoff to the Langford game-clinching TD, Spartans in our section were berated by Buckeyes every other play time and again throughout the game, and with Buckeye faithful standing up the ENTIRE GAME and unwilling to sit down (see my seat below). Said one Buckeye fan early in the 2nd quarter after we politely requested (not demanded) him to "please sit down,"... the Buckeye said: "You haven't been to the Rose Bowl in 26 years, what don't you get up and cheer on your fu**ing team." Said, Sloth: "well if you aren't using your seat, can I?" and he walked over and sat down in the seat of that really ripe Buckeye fan. Good for Sloth pointing out their ridiculousness. The Buckeye Nation should be totally embarrassed at how their fans treat others. These are the ones that cause Kirk Herbstreit to move out of Ohio.
|The view of the ES at the B1G Ten Title game. My guess is Stanford
fans will be more appreciative of others at the Rose Bowl than were
Buckeye fans at the B1G Ten Championship.
This is just a sample of how these Buckeye fans at the game were AWFUL, TERRIBLE. Seriously, what terrible, mean people.
So, HOW WE WON was even better. The Spartan defense was awsome early and late - that's how defense wins championships... when it matters. That Buckeye offensive line and Braxton Miller really gave a good sucker punch to the Spartans in the third quarter. The ES turned to Buckeye fans sitting next to him and said, "wow, Miller is awesome, and that line is playing great." Sloth turned to the ES and said, "we're done." But, the Spartans weren't done - not these Spartans. No more S.O.S. The Spartans, with Cook and Langford, punched right back with a nice mix of run and pass. Hard-nosed play out of Michigan State, with a 4th-Down conversion on the option by Cook in the process. For the Spartans to have the resilience they did, for the defense to shut down OSU, to beat them down and demoralize them in the final 15 minutes - it was beautiful. POUND GREEN POUND. Better yet, seeing the "WTF" look on the face of Urban Meyer at the end of the game was... well, priceless. That was worth $1,000.
Sure enough, these Buckeye fans, including the jerk above standing all game, left when Langford ran for paydirt to seal the MSU victory. If you care so much for your school and your football team has won 24 straight, wouldn't you want to stick around? I guess not - because you Buckeyes don't care about the school; just your team winning. What sore losers, terrible football fans.
All the ES wanted was to get back to the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1988. Who cares about the National Title? It is all about the Rose Bowl. AND WE DID IT! The Spartans did it our way - with grind it out defense, a timely running game behind drives with long times-of-possession, and the best game of his career by QB Connor Cook.
|Yeah, it was pretty much all red. The Buckeye Nation figured this was a walk in the park. |
Michigan State ruined the Ohio State dream, and ruined their season.
After the game, the ES jumped onto the railings outside with his "yeee-haws." High-fiving every Spartan in shouting distance. It was 5 degrees outside, 27 below freezing, but it felt like it was 80 degrees on a California beach. Then, the ES walked with Keith and Big Bob into another three or four bars and high-fived all the Spartan fans in eyeshot. 98% of all Spartans said they were going to Pasadena, had no idea how but didn't care about the cost. Must have had 1,000 high-fives between 1-3 am in Indianapolis. The place was electric... and exhausting over time. How much partying and jumping up and down can one do in one evening? The ES must've burned 5,000 calories, and got the flu in the process.
The ES is bringing his posse of 10-15 Spartan fans to the Rose Bowl. OMG, I can't wait.
Ohio State and Buckeye Nation: We got payback for your cheating ways; Paybacks are Hell.
|Just look at these basic stats. Read 'em and weep:|
|3rd Down Conversions||1-10||5-15|
|4th Down Conversions||0-2||2-2|