Let’s suck all the fun out of the journey and simulate the college football season to the first week of December.

Ohio State finishes first in the Big Ten East. The Buckeyes go 1-1 against Michigan State and Michigan and win a tie-breaker. Wisconsin wins the Big Ten West.

After four quarters, with 10 Buckeye defenders in the box, Alex Hornibrook comes to grips with the reality it’s much more difficult to hit a receiver on their outside shoulder than a moving golf cart. Ohio State wins the Big Ten Championship. The celebration begins with the trophy presentation.

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany climbs the makeshift stage in the middle of Lucas Oil Stadium. Upon seeing Delaney, the college football world wonders for a fleeting second when he’ll attempt to recruit UTEP to the Big Ten after the smashing success of the conference’s addition of both Maryland and Rutgers. Everyone soon shelves their dreams for another day.  They regain their thoughts in time to see Urban Meyer hold the Big Ten trophy over his head.

People with live microphones and an internet connection will waste no time to spew the inevitable redemption tale cooked up from Ohio State.   

Amid all the distraction and circumstance, Ohio State continues to win football games.”

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“With the team’s focus on the games and a chip on their shoulder, Ohio State rolls along to the next challenge.”

“In a year marked by so much strife and controversy, the Buckeyes somehow pull off the unthinkable and win the Big Ten.”

Mute your television.

Close twitter.

Switch your radio onto a Top 40 station and buy a television because no one listens to games on the radio anymore General Eisenhower.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Whatever success Ohio State attains this season is not a redemption tale. How can anyone consider it one when the adversity originates from the winner’s failure to act?

I can’t be the only one to need a handful of antacids (Name brand antacid sponsorship available.) and a few Handsome Johnny’s in honor of John Prine to temper the pending nausea.

The Buckeyes will be called both plucky and resilient. The actions of their oft-forgetful coach with delayed-remorse eliminates them from consideration as either plucky or resilient. Self-stirred turmoil from Meyer’s see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil approach to Zach Smith’s employment at Ohio State does not grant the Buckeyes the time-honored tradition in sports of a rallying point.

The 2018 Astros were Houston Strong and the New Orleans Saints won a Superbowl in 2009 while still repairing the city from the decimation of Hurricane Katrina. These are just two of examples of a team identifying a rallying point outside of their organization and bigger than their organization and using it as motivation through the season. But in those cases, Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman did not buy an industrial fan factory and turn their inventory on the city to produce gale force winds and catastrophic damages. Last I checked, Drew Brees and Sean Payton weren’t tooling around Treme with a sledgehammer and an industrial-strength circular saw decimating levees when the skies opened up on the Crescent City.  

The football program put itself in its current situation and unsuccessfully tried to stifle public outcry with the low-fat version of a three-game suspension for Meyer. With their lead from the incredibly local independent review panel, the university served Meyer with the sort of suspension that did not damage Ohio State’s chances to win the Big Ten Championship. In fact, fans of the team should be disappointed if they don’t.

Their future success is not one of redemption, but a paltry comeback from a self-inflicted punishment.