Buckeye memories (1976)

Buckeye memories (1976)

Submitted by k.o.k.Law on November 19th, 2012 at 9:58 AM





On to law school. Not UM. Their decision, not mine.

But, that costs money too, so ticket scalping, uh, broker, business continues.

Thanks to my baseball buddies, I show up for the pre-season meeting for football program sellers, open to them, and the players on club sports teams. The varsity athletes get to keep their 7 cents per program (which cost a buck back then).

The club sports, like lacrosse, had their money go to their program.

I kind of let them think I was a baseball player (cough) so I got a check in December for my sales for the season.

Yes, this would now be an NCAA violation, as you cannot have benefits available only to student athletes. Program selling is now outsourced.

Hawking programs outside the stadium was perfect cover for hustling tickets. Which my bosses new, but I always sold all my programs, so?

On the first day of Legal Research and Writing class, taught by a recent grad, we were told we would get an “A” if we guessed his favorite number. No one did. Turned out to be #87, for Ron Kremer.

My kind of guy.

We had an undefeated season, except for an inexplicable loss at Purdue. So, beating the Buckeyes makes us the co-champs, with the tiebreaker, winning the head to head game.

The instructor tells me to meet him at such and such bar Friday night in Columbus.

A couple of bros still at the fraternity house are making the trip with me.

The trip down on Friday is uneventful, as, with Michigan plates, we carefully observe all traffic rules. We don't even drink in the car.

The national rule is that fraternity members can stay overnight in any house, so we plan on crashing at the Ohio chapter of our group.

The bar is on the aptly named High street.

In conditions that can only be described as just short of a riot, carloads of people are driving up and down High Street, singing, well, yelling, the obscene words to the greatest fight song ever written, “Hail to the mother----rs, hail to the big c---suckers, hail, hail, Michigan, the cesspool of the West.”

I ask someone what the straight metal poles are, about four feet high, regularly spaced along the sidewalk a foot or so in from the street.

Those are parking meters, is the response.

Where does the money go, says I.

Oh, now they remove that part the day before the Michigan game. Cuz one year you beat us, and people were pulling them off and throwing them through the store windows.

OK, we are not in Kansas any more.

Finally find the bar, gigantic line to get in, so we say the hell with it and head for the fraternity house.

Some Buckeyes start engaging us in conversation, being that I have Michigan attire displayed. No one else around. One guy is predicting glorious events for his team. Hands in my pockets, I calmly respond, well, we'll see on the field tomorrow.

Next thing I know, his fist has left my jaw after chipping two of my upper teeth.

There is a scrum for awhile with the two groups, and they scurry away.

Silly me. A crime has been committed. So, I walk the couple blocks back to High Street and find a payphone. To call the police.

There may be something more naïve I have done in my life, but, probably not.

I wait and wait for a car to arrive, looking at the chaos outside the window. And finally realize, they ain't coming.

At the house, there are actually a couple of football fans from Kentucky, or Tennessee, or both, who came up just for the big event, having heard what a colossal game this is. Cool.

We hustle tickets on the street.

Scoreless first half.

In the second half, Ricky Leach leads that option offense up and down the field. After one TD, our holder decides, on his own, to pick up the ball and run around the end for two points.

A 22-0 shellacking. Rose Bowl bound. Though, Rick Leach completed zero passes.

This is right up there with the births of my two children as a great event in my life.