Perhaps you’ve heard that Michigan recruit Reon Dawson is facing a major dilemma. Dawson, a Trotwood, Ohio native, was raised on Craig Krenzel spirals, Jim Tressel sweater vests, George Dohrmann raffle investigations, and all things Buckeye football. Alas, Ohio State never offered the three-star cornerback a scholarship. He verbally committed to Illinois, and then flipped to Michigan on January 14. Last Wednesday, he signed with the Wolverines, which is all well and good with us. We can’t begrudge a young man for attending Michigan if Ohio State willfully shunned him, unless his name is Trey Burke.
However, the situation got a little dicey when Dawson informed the Dayton Daily News that he plans to remain a Buckeye fan "until [death]". (Dawson also reportedly proclaimed, "I love Ohio State," which was later repudiated by fellow Trotwood-Madison teammate and fellow Michigan signee Mike McCray on Twitter, who contended that Dawson had actually professed his love "for the state of Ohio." Who to believe?!?) Naturally, this ruffled some feathers in the state up north. "Looks like Hoke has some work to do with this kid," MGoBlog message board poster "lazyfoot10" ominously commented. Not to worry – Land-Grant Holy Land is here to help!
We understand your skepticism. Normally, guidance-counseling is not a service we provide for Brady Hoke’s players. They have Dear Abby and Mark May on speed dial for that. But Wayne Woodrow Hayes once said that drastic times call for drastic measures, so allow us to present some free advice to Mr. Dawson.
Of course, there are a number of approaches Dawson could take to deal with the matter. What follows is an unbiased, comprehensive breakdown of all of them.
1. Dawson could renege on his commitment to Michigan, transfer to Ohio State, and walk-on to the football program. This would be a commendable display of loyalty, etching Dawson’s name into Buckeye lore alongside Justin "Family Values" Boren. On the other hand, there are 10,392 reasons (per year!) why such an approach would be economically imprudent.
2. Dawson could shelve his Buckeye fandom while enrolled at Michigan and reclaim it upon graduation. Slightly more sensible than Approach 1, but the Buckeyes are poised to make multiple national championship runs in the next four years. How often does a fan of any team get to say that? Would Dawson really want to leave four potential national titles on the table? Of course not.
3. Dawson could shamelessly maintain his Buckeye fandom while at Michigan. We at Land-Grant Holy Land feel a duty to caution Dawson about Approach 3. The public backlash towards him would be impossible to overcome if he was spotted singing along to "Hang on Sloopy" during an Ohio State-Michigan game. In all likelihood, he’d end up exiled to a shack in the Upper Peninsula, never to be seen or heard from again.
4. Dawson could preserve a connection to Ohio State by dating a Buckeye co-ed. Approach 4 is decidedly an ELITE approach. For starters, Pythagoras famously found that OSU’s selection of eligible bachelorettes > Michigan’s, in regards to attractiveness, intellectual capacity, and ability to defend a spread offense. Second, this brings to mind Miss Alabama Katherine Webb, the former Auburn undergrad who spurned her alma mater to date A.J. McCarron. If Dawson is anything like Webb, one can reasonably conclude that Brent Musberger will eventually spend an entire broadcast gushing about his physical tools, which is sure to do wonders for Dawson’s NFL Draft stock.
5. Dawson could volunteer to be featured in the Ohio State athletic department’s "Buckeye for Life" commercial. Assuming Dawson is a registered organ donor, he is in position to advertise his OSU fandom (and his decision to posthumously give away his heart, appendix, esophagus, intestines, et al.) on the Horseshoe’s recently-renovated scoreboard. It’s one thing when individuals on the university’s payroll like Urban Meyer and Gordon Gee state that they’re "Buckeyes for Life", but it’s a whole ‘nother monster when a so-called Michigan Man is vouching for Ohio State’s greatness. Dawson’s role in the ad would have to be kept under wraps until November 29, 2014, when Michigan plays at Ohio State, and debuted at a crucial point in the game. Dawson would subsequently turn heel on the Wolverines, switch to a scarlet and gray uniform, and capture a pick-6 that clinches the win for the Bucks. How could Michigan football ever recover from that?
RECOMMENDED PLAN OF ACTION: A combination of Approaches 4 and 5.