Workplace etiquette about Michigan - Ohio State game

Submitted by alabluema on March 5th, 2010 at 3:05 PM

This is a relatively meaningless post -- but I have a workplace quandary. My coworker is an Ohio State fan, grew up in Columbus, hates Michigan etc. So he obviously understands that losses to your arch-rival are extremely painful. Well, this guy, who is otherwise nice, keeps bashing on Rich Rodriguez to me, as if I have no stake in the matter. He's also very smug every year when Michigan loses -- predicts a blowout before the game etc. Of course I don't have much ammo to come back with other than that I think things will turn around.

Well, I was thinking the other day that I would never bash Jim Tressel to my co-worker like he does to me, just because I don't think it's cool. Maybe he's not as into the whole thing as I am so he doesn't understand the fact that he's being insulting. But I wonder, is it acceptable to rub it in to coworkers about the Michigan Ohio State game? I don't think it is. Maybe it's not ok face to face with Sparty either.



March 5th, 2010 at 3:09 PM ^

He can't possibly be your co-worker if you're a Michigan Grad and he's and OSU Grad. Is it possible that you meant when he delivers food to your workplace?

If the above is correct then yes, it's okay to bash him. To his face. Without remorse.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:11 PM ^

This might sound dumb/old to some of you but...I never talk smack about other peoples teams/players/coaches and I don't expect them to do it to me. If however you are the type that talks smack then you should be able/willing to take it as in my book you have asked for it. If you don't bash on this other person then I think they should respect you and not do the same, if they can't respect that then they are being rude.

Zone Left

March 5th, 2010 at 3:12 PM ^

1. It's in classic rivalry spirit for him to give you shit.

2. Nothing is stopping you from retaliating with one of these in a frame over his computer.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:24 PM ^

I have a lot of OSU friends (brutal) and they are relentless. I usually just shrug them off, but there is really no release. If it gets bad, I usually hit back with some expletive laced personal attack that ruins their day and belittles them in a public setting. Some of them aren't friends anymore, but that's what they get for the constant bashing. I'm not a sh*t talker unless I get f*cked with, then all hell breaks loose.


March 5th, 2010 at 4:32 PM ^

Good to see I'm not alone on this. I went to a high school in Michigan and all of my old high school friends are die hard U of M haters (aka 0 of them got in; not that theres anything wrong with that but that's why they hate).

The shit-talking used to get so bad that I could only respond with personal attacks and I'm not really friends with any of them anymore. At least this has happened to others as well.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:31 PM ^

Just hang up a big sign that says, "57-43-6" in your workstation.

Whenever he mentions anything, you should respond with, "Well, if you guys win the next 15 games, you can have bragging rights."

When he mentions Rich Rod, say something about the OSU fans who wanted Tressel fired after the Purdue loss.

They get really pissed when reminded about the Purdue loss. You should probably slip the occasional "everybody murders" comment into casual conversation also.

Bottom line: If you allow him to get under your skin, he has won the battle.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:52 PM ^

I work with an OSU fan, I'm half his age and his boss. Usually when he comes in and wants to talk about how Evan Turner or TP played the previous night I look directly at him and tell him I could really give a shit. He usually stops talking right away.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:34 PM ^

I live in TN and being a Michigan fan in SSSEEEEEEEEEECCCCCCCCCCC country. It has been very difficult especially in the work place. I have come to despise the University of Tennessee because the fans are just completely dumb and have no knowledge of football as a whole. When people start their trash talking I generally just throw out facts about UM that they cannot touch. It usually works cause most of the people talking trash are using what they hear on these dumb call in shows. Just bombard them with facts and they usually don't have much to come back with. Of course lately it is becoming increasingly difficult to be able to talk back too If you can find someone to talk trash to that actually has knowledge it can actually help these long work days go by quicker :). So it is definitely acceptable in the work place to talk all the trash you can as long as you can back it up.


March 5th, 2010 at 6:11 PM ^

I moved to Memphis the year after Woodson won the Heisman. No one would stop getting on my case about how Peyton got robbed. That said, I tip my hat to Tennessee fans for being so loyal. I know folks would drive from Memphis to Knoxville on Friday night just to watch the game.

I've since moved and have not had to deal with fanatical Vols.

You know why Vols fans wear bright orange?

So they can go to the game on Saturday. Then hunt on Sunday. And then pick up trash on the highway on Monday. All without changing their clothes.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:39 PM ^

is your ability to separate your love of Michigan football from work. Just tell him when we beat tuoOSU you won't rub his nose in it, because Michigan fans have more social skills and don't have to thump their chests when things are good.

Or you can just tell him that the jerk store called, and they're running out of him.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:40 PM ^

I say, just stay quiet until the fall rolls around. Watch his comments turn from annoying smugness, to slight worry, to somewhat panicky, to down right "oh-shit" as RR rolls off the wins next year. It will be especially sweet because he'll know that it's not just a fluke and that he's catching a glimpse of what the future has in store for his fandom. Then wait until 2011, when we do it all over again, and he doesn't see an end in sight.


March 5th, 2010 at 4:27 PM ^

Right on, man. I was watching a youtube video of the highlights from last year. Even if you are a little skeptical of RR (I'm not one of them), you can't help but think that this team is fast, this offense is explosive and they will make Ann Arbor an even more exciting football venue.

Just remember how close we were to 7-5 last year...Tate doesn't throw that pick against MSU and/or D.Rob doesn't throw that pick against Iowa. But in all honesty, I'd take those two losses. Against MSU, Tate showed us and himself that he wasn't a one hit (or two hit) comeback kid. He's the real deal. Against Iowa, D.Rob had an important coachable moment, and he'll be stronger b/c of it.


March 5th, 2010 at 3:48 PM ^

Tell him that he should hope and pray his Football and Basketball programs stay relevant b/c the University will fall off the map otherwise. It is rough being a Michigan fan these days but you can always ask the detractors how many schools have the president delivering the commencement speech and students competing and winning silver in the Olympics. Also, cite the Detroit News article about Michigan in a boom in terms of hiring top researchers, building on campus, fiscal responsibility, etc. I think the whole article and real world things happening in and around the University show why we do feel a cut above the rest as Michigan Alumni, fans, and followers. We still have plenty of reasons to puff out our chest in pride and rock a Michigan shirt! GO BLUE!


March 5th, 2010 at 3:48 PM ^

Workplace ettiquette involving Michigan and OSU? That exists?

I used to work at a place that shipped semi trucks full of cabinets to Columbus. Frequently, especially during football season, we would print these huge "Hail to the Victors" or "OSU Sucks" banners at the rear of the trailers so they would see them immediately after they opened the trailer doors. And, of course, we'd make a point to make sure the one OSU fan that we had to work with would see it before it shipped out. It was great fun!


March 5th, 2010 at 4:08 PM ^

don't sleep with his wife, she most likely has something you don't want.

her willingness to sleep with you is only to get some IQ rich seed into the gene pool.


March 5th, 2010 at 4:32 PM ^

Just tell him that even if Ohio State won 100-0 every year for 100 years, you'd still rather have a Michigan degree on your wall than whatever shit he pulled out of that Cracker Jack box.


March 5th, 2010 at 5:01 PM ^

My parents are friends with Ohio State fans and I never said anything insulting to them until one of them acting he was wiping his butt with my Michigan sweatshirt so I let him have it whenever I see him.


March 5th, 2010 at 5:18 PM ^

who grow up in college towns can have especially deep feelings as fans -- I'd cut the guy some slack unless he is completely in-your-face about it. Your time will come, and if he's a true fan he will then suffer accordingly. My wife grew up in AA near the stadium -- it's hard to quantify her complete and utter hatred of everything OSU, and thus the depth of her despair these past few years.

Wolverine 73

March 5th, 2010 at 5:19 PM ^

when an obnoxious Ohio State fan (they were quiet in the 90s) confronts me is to point out that they play this football game every year, and someone wins and someone loses, and someone is happy and someone else is sad, but the one thing that remains constant is that Michigan grads went to one of the preminent educational institutions in the country, and Ohio State grads went to . . .the biggest state college in Ohio.


March 5th, 2010 at 5:23 PM ^

I tend to be pretty obnoxious in Michigan Stadium during games but I don't really talk trash in person. I defend my school when people take cheap shots but I don't initiate anything.

2 Walter Smith

March 5th, 2010 at 5:27 PM ^

Reach deep down into your Maize & Blue pride and up will flow a torrent of OSU hate so strong it will emanate from your eyes and shut him up. I use it very effectively to shut up Buckeye trash talk.


March 5th, 2010 at 5:43 PM ^

who insisted on bring up "the Horror" throughout the 2007 season, (even after that Michigan team beat his alma mater) and kept it up halfway through the 2008 season; I now have one fewer friends at work. We nod in the hallway with half smiles, mumble "tough game" after losses by either school in the fall, and that's it. Fuck 'em.