Why is this news?: Sluggish Michigan student ticket sales, Ohio State Big Ten honors

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

All the big Ohio State news in one convenient package.

"The last lap, I was all by myself. I was scared for my life."

- Ohio State steeplechaser Jackson Neff to Todd Jones of the Columbus Dispatch

Todd Jones of The Columbus Dispatch took a look today at Ohio State's Jackson Neff, who went from being a walk-on to Big Ten champion in the 3,000 meter steeplechase in his junior year. After just two years of running track at Cincinnati's Walnut Hills, Neff's hard work since arriving in Columbus allowed him to become the runner he is and take home the title at the Big Ten Championships on May 17th.

Currently Neff and 26 other men and women of the Ohio State outdoor track team are in Jacksonville, Florida for the NCAA East region track and field preliminary round, which will run through Saturday. The Buckeye athletes will be looking to advance to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Oregon. One of those eyeing at spot in Eugene will be Ohio State wide receiver Devin Smith, who has only competed in one meet this season.

2014 Ohio State baseball team and golfer Claudia Lim recognized as 2013-14 Big Ten Outstanding Sportsmanship Award winners

- Big Ten Conference

On Thursday the Big Ten Conference announced that women's golfer Claudia Lim and the Ohio State baseball team were the Buckeye recipients of the 2013-14 Big Ten Outstanding Sportsmanship Awards. One member of each varsity team on each campus was chosen, and two from each campus were chosen as the Outstanding Sportsmanship Award winners.

The Ohio State baseball team earned the most notoriety when they all volunteered to be potential bone marrow donor matches when pitcher Zach Farmer was diagnosed with Leukemia. Not only did the team volunteer, but they also urged the general public to do the same. The selection the baseball team is noteworthy as they are the only whole team to be honored by the Big Ten.

Lim, in her final season on the Ohio State women's golf team, recently helped the Buckeyes tie for a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Championship in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Her best round over the four-round event came in the final round when she finished with an even-par 70. This isn't the only accolade that Lim has earned, as in 2013 she was named to the Academic All-Big Ten team, and in 2012 and 2013 she was named a Ohio State scholar-athlete.

"We're hoping it's going to bounce back. It's a national trend with student ticketing on a decline and we're hoping it's a one-year blip."

- Dave Ablauf, University of Michigan Associate Athletic Director, via Mark Synder of the Detroit Free Press

Have Wolverine students cooled on the football team given the team's struggles the last few years? After selling around 19,000 student tickets last year, and normally selling between 18-21,000 student tickets, the demand for student tickets is down this year in Ann Arbor. Current returns have put expected Michigan student tickets at 13-14,000 for the upcoming year.

To try and combat the slow ticket sales so far, Michigan has offered up some ticket plans to give some fans that normally don't make it to Michigan Stadium the chance to jingle their keys in Ann Arbor. Three different ticket packages are available to fans, with one of them including the night game against Penn State, another excluding the premium Wolverine home game on the schedule, and the third designed to help bring families to "The Big House".

While Ohio State won't have the same problem getting students to Ohio Stadium, in case any current Buckeyes might have forgotten, the student ticket ordering period opens up soon.

"Right now we'd take anybody."

- Bill Battle, Alabama Athletic Director, to Jeremy Fowler at CBSSports.com

Anybody want to play Alabama in 2015? Anybody? Bueller? For once nobody can blame Alabama for oversigning, as they are looking to fill out their 2015 football schedule. Along with their eight-game SEC slate, the Crimson Tide so far have non-conference games scheduled against Wisconsin, Louisiana-Monroe, and what is traditionally a FCS squad in mid-November leading up to the Iron Bowl. With the season-opener against the Badgers at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, it doesn't seem likely that a high-profile fourth non-conference opponent will be in the works for Nick Saban and company.

Before Buckeye fans offer up Ohio State's services to play Alabama, remember the Buckeyes already have filled their non-conference schedule with games against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, along with Hawaii, Northern Illinois, and Western Michigan in Columbus before Big Ten play starts. It seems highly unlikely that Ohio State and Alabama would schedule each other, even with Alabama playing Penn State, Michigan, and next year's game against Wisconsin, if the cards shake out fans could get a Buckeyes/Crimson Tide matchup in the College Football Playoff in the near future.

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