It's well-documented that Buckeyes fans actively dislike anything and everything related to That Team Up North. Urban Meyer used the proper name of that team in a press conference during the 2013 season, and immediately apologized. His apology did not stop Meyer's wife, Shelley, from threatening to wash his mouth out with soap for the transgression.
When posed the question of which team Buckeyes fans love to hate the most, That Team Up North is the most obvious answer. It's not even a question--the response would be unanimous. So, let's set aside That Team Up North and discuss which other team Buckeyes fans love to hate the most.
WIthin the Big Ten, an obvious choice would be Michigan State. For one thing, we don't give a damn for the whole state of Michigan, and obviously, Michigan State is in Michigan.
Ohio State has only lost to Michigan State 14 times since 1912, but the most recent loss was particularly painful. With the Big Ten re-alignment for 2014, Michigan State and Ohio State will be competing for the right to represent the Big Ten East in the conference championship. This will only serve to make the rivalry between these two teams more intense in coming years.
Of course, if you watched last week's matchup between the basketball Buckeyes and Spartans you have another reason to love to hate Michigan State – their "just like football" chant.
Another worthy contender for the title of "the team Buckeyes fans love to hate, aside from That Team Up North" would be any team from the SEC.
Ohio State's recent history against the self-proclaimed dominant football conference is inauspicious. Going all the way back through Ohio State's storied bowl history, the Buckeyes have managed to beat current SEC teams three times. Ohio State beat Texas A&M 28-12 in the Cotton Bowl Classic following the 1986 season, and beat the Aggies again in a 24-14 victory in the Sugar Bowl following the 1998 season. Of course, whether or not those wins can be counted as victories over the vaunted SEC is dubious, as both wins occurred long before Texas A&M joined the SEC. Ohio State's only other bowl victory over a team from the SEC came in the Sugar Bowl following the 2010 season. The Buckeyes beat Arkansas 31-26, but that win, of course, was vacated.
It's this history that makes it easy to love to hate every team in the SEC. Any fan of a program within the SEC that finished the season with a cumulative record of 3-9 or 4-8 will be glad to tell you just how superior the SEC is, despite the fact that their preferred team has little or nothing to do with that perception. SEC fans love to hate Ohio State, and the feeling is generally mutual.
What teams, aside from That Team Up North, do you, as a Buckeyes fan, love to hate?