The morning after, Buckeyes, fans left wondering: 'What could have been?'
This is worse than a last-second loss.
And yes, I know that in the entire scheme of things, with hatred and violence and sickness in the world, playing a game can be seen as a minor thing. But college football is also something that people care about. A lot.
So a lot of Buckeyes fans are sad today. Unless something crazy happens — and in this day and age who could ever predict what will happen next — the B1G has decided to postpone its football schedule until the spring. And that pretty much means if we do see some version in 2021, it will be vastly different than what we’re used to.
And that also means, in turn, that a shot at a historical season for Ohio State is gone.
Gone is the possibility of a national championship.
Ohio State was ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in many way-too-early preseason polls. All season, everyone would have wondered if the Buckeyes could have defeated Clemson in a Playoff rematch. I think the difference between the teams is very small, and Ohio State would have definitely held its own.
The B1G hasn’t won a national title since the Buckeyes whipped Alabama and Oregon for the 2014 crown.
Could Ohio State have celebrated in confetti again this season?
We’ll never know.
Gone are the possible individual honors.
Hand in hand with the team title chase is the likelihood that Justin Fields would have challenged Trevor Lawrence for the Heisman, and possibly the No. 1 overall pick (which would have been the first for Ohio State since 1997). Would Fields have had a shot at both? Yes. Definitely. And I’m sad we probably won’t get to see it.
The B1G hasn’t produced a Heisman winner since 2006, when Buckeyes QB Troy Smith lifted the bronze statue.
Gone is the chance for another undefeated run through the B1G.
Ohio State has won its past 13 conference games (15 in a row if you include the Big Ten Championship Games in 2018 and 2019).
Could they have stretched that streak to 20 or more?
I’m going to miss watching the Buckeyes make a trip to Beaver Stadium, possibly for a chance at the East crown and a Playoff spot. Even if there were no fans in the stadium, I would’ve loved to have seen the game.
Gone is the chance to break offensive records.
Last year was a video game. OSU averaged 46.9 points per game — a program record. The Buckeyes scored 656 points — 3rd all-time in B1G history.
The program record is 672 points, accomplished by the 2014 national champions who played 15 games. That team averaged 44.8 points per game.
This season had a chance to be even better, even more historic. Now we’ll never know.
Gone is the potential to beat Michigan for 9th consecutive year.
Nine is the magic number in series history. It’s the most consecutive wins one opponent has had over the other.
Right now, Michigan holds it. The Wolverines won 9 consecutive from 1901-1909.
Ohio State’s longest streak in the rivalry is 8, the current streak.
Would the Wolverines have come to The Shoe and ended it? Doubt it. And I would’ve liked to have seen them try.
Gone is all the tradition.
Rosters are ever-changing, but the pageantry, the dotting of the I, another B1G Championship and another Senior Day are what we’ll miss about 2020. Gone are the noon kickoffs and the frenzied stadiums and the tailgates.
Just gone. I feel for the athletes missing out on everything they worked for. I feel for the fans. And I feel for everyone who worked in the stadiums.
It’s a tough situation. And in a world where things are pretty serious, the opportunity for B1G college football was a great distraction, and now we don’t have it. I assume the only things we can hope for is something else unexpected — could Ohio State change gears and pursue nonconference games? It seems far-fetched, even more so today than Tuesday. I have to admit, the thought of the Buckeyes traveling south and playing an SEC or Big 12 school sounds extremely exciting.
Instead, I wonder what these athletes will do. Will anyone bolt for a new team — one that is committed to playing in the fall? (Conventional wisdom says Fields simply decides to prepare for the NFL Draft. But I wouldn’t be the first person to suggest that Fields could return to his old team at Georgia, which needs a quarterback of his talents).
And how will all of this affect recruiting? Will athletes be more likely to go to SEC and ACC teams now, because they want to play more than the B1G?
I think we can say for certain that everything — every single thing our imaginations can come up with — is in the realm of possibility. We have no idea what could happen next.
The only thing I know for certain is what is gone.
And it hurts — worse than a last-second loss.