Everybody knows that one of the best parts of being a sports fan is debating and dissecting the most (and least) important questions in the sporting world with your friends. So, we’re bringing that to the pages of LGHL with our favorite head-to-head column: You’re Nuts.
In You’re Nuts, two LGHL staff members will take differing sides of one question and argue their opinions passionately. Then, in the end, it’s up to you to determine who’s right and who’s nuts.
Today’s Question: What Ohio State gameday tradition are you most looking forward to coming back?
Jami’s Take: Singing “Carmen Ohio” at the end of football games
If you don’t get choked up every time you put your arms around the strangers who flank you to pour one out for our beloved alma mater, you are a soulless ghoul and I don’t care to know you.
This song nails the Buckeye experience. “With joy which death alone can still” — that’s the joy I felt when the Buckeyes won the National Championship. “How firm thy friendship” — that’s the feeling of reuniting with the besties for homecoming. “Time and change will surely show” – that’s how I feel walking down High Street and finding that I still love it even though they have demolished all my favorite bars (RIP Too’s, Chumley’s, and The O - gone too soon).
Part of what makes OSU such a magical place is that it’s so much bigger than any one graduate or game or season or graduating class. The history and tradition spans centuries, and it’s palpable during “Carmen.” We are the luckiest people in the world because we’re part of something so much bigger than ourselves, and we get to leave our mark on a place that is truly special – because those who came before us made it so. We get to celebrate that while standing next to the very people who became our people at OSU, who made us who we are while we all worked to make OSU what it can be. This is true no matter when or where you sing “Carmen.”
But there is something particularly special about singing it in The Shoe after a win. When you’re in college, a big football win feels like the most monumental thing in the world. Take down Michigan and it feels like you can fly. Knock off another Top-10 team, and you might as well have invented electricity.
I remember being in school and wishing time would stop in its tracks on game days. Sitting next to my best friends cheering the Buckeyes on to victory, I never wanted my time in college to end. I love the life I’ve built post-grad, but I still get nostalgic for Columbus on game day.
Never is campus more beautiful than in the heart of fall, with the changing leaves marking the passage of time, and “Carmen” so perfectly hones in on all the emotional layers that come with the feelings of change.
When I return to campus now, so much has changed. Parts of it are unrecognizable. But when I stand in the stadium and those bells start chiming after a football game, I am instantly 21 again, perfectly content with where I’m at in the moment and hopeful for everything to come. It is a warm hug from a place that will always feel like home.
Time and change will surely show, how right my answer, O-hi-o.
Matt’s Take: The Ramp Entrance
I know that when it comes to Ohio State Marching Band traditions, “Script Ohio” is the most obvious answer, and I love “Script One,” as any red-blooded Buckeye fan does. But for me, “The Ramp Entrance” is the thing that gets me most excited and emotional.
Perhaps it is because this is the first time that we see TBDITL in Ohio Stadium on each individual game day, or maybe it’s the sheer, regimented perfection of each intricate movement, but I regularly tear up when the drum line makes its way down the ramp on the north end of The Shoe; and then when the drum major runs through the tightly assembled columns and — after a signature backbend — signals for the awaiting phalanx to do what the song commands and drive down the field, I become a blubbering mess — much like I am even typing this out now.
The ramp entrance signifies the start of an event that millions of people build their entire weeks around, and to be fortunate enough to be in that glorious cathedral of college football on the banks of the Olentangy is an honor each and every time it happens. As the Pride of the Buckeyes makes its way onto the playing surface, that means that for the next three hours, you are in for something special.
The ramp entrance is like the anxiety-fueled moments as attendants corral horses into the starting gates before a Triple Crown race. The excitement, the nerves, the anticipation have been building; finally, the beloved, familiar traditions are underway, meaning that the action cannot be far behind.
There is a rising excitement about what is to come: It’s the fizz bubbling up in a bottle of champagne before the cork is finally popped; it’s the giddiness of a group of kids waiting not-so-patiently at the top of the stairs for their parents to let them open their presents on Christmas morning; it’s unbridled elation of seeing your loved one walk into the airport terminal after being gone for weeks.
The Ohio State University, its football team, and its marching band are obviously very important to all of us in Buckeye Nation, and nothing gets that pride, camaraderie, and nostalgia stirring in me like seeing 228 college students in faux-military regalia complete with scarlet and gray plumes systematically marching onto that football field.
I know people are more likely to side with Jami or to go with the incomparable “Script Ohio,” but for me, it has always been the ramp entrance. I mean, even this video that the marching band posted last week got me emotional. So, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go get my box of tissues.
Who has the right answer to today’s question?
This poll is closed
Jami: "Carmen Ohio"
Matt: The Ramp Entrance