The Kansas City Chiefs won Super Bowl LVII 38-35 over the Philadelphia Eagles, signaling the end of the football season. For non-NFL fans, this has been the case for a month now, but for those of us that follow the two leagues to the end of the line, the journey of 2022-23 football season is over.
The dedicated life of a fan never stops. The football offseason is a journey as long as the season itself. There will be time for all the message board posting, recruiting news, and debates about realignment among many other topics that fill our beloved sport of football’s time off. But even with all of that fun stuff, there is still so much more time on your hands — time that you need to fill until Ohio State or your other favorite team kicks off again to start the year.
Once the Lombardi Trophy is handed over to the winning team, a question looms in many of our minds: what now? That question is not easy to answer, but this is not only the offseason for players. Fans need time to recoup as well. Not to say what us fans do is anything near the players, but the emotional ride has a level of demand to it.
To recover best, maximizing your time in the offseason starts with your other hobbies, then devolves into our helpless habits of fanaticism. Today, we get into the best ways to maximize your time away from the game.
Catch up on all those shows you missed
This is an easy one. Fall is not just time for college football apparently. New shows come out in the fall, and with all the streaming services dropping new content at any given time, we’re bound to miss something. Starting here is the easiest way to get a fresh reset. There is a ton of non-football stuff out there I’ve been told. What time is better than now to find that stuff?
Sylvester Stallone is in a show based in Tulsa, and apparently he is King. If that doesn’t get you excited for the potential this offseason brings, the show with Kevin Costner has a few spin-offs that can eat away the time until football. Without too many recommendations, there is a lot out there that can widen the horizon. Rather than talking about that five star recruit at dinner with your significant other or friends, you can discuss these shows.
There’s also not just TV shows, movies still exist and the new Avatar was pretty cool. James Cameron can probably fill at least a month of your time, but there are also movies like Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile, and if your offseason is filled with that, then maybe just get on recruiting message boards.
Try that new hobby you have been putting off
Moving on, I know with the TikToks and social media, people see a bunch of stuff they might want to try. Throw that might word out of the vocabulary and take some new hobbies by the horns.
There are some cool people who read this site that have incredible skills and hobbies. If you’re like me and do not, there is a lot of potential out there. Hobbies come and go in our life. With limited time on our hands, we have to pick and choose meaning some of our favorite activities fall by the wayside. Without football taking up seven days out of the week, there is time to reignite those passions.
The list is long here, starting with woodworking. Could you imagine being able to say you built a bird house or something? That feels like a pretty productive offseason to me. You could even build it with Ohio State in mind with the paint scheme. After you start with the bird house, your skills will develop, and eventually you’ll be on a wooden canoe you made yourself.
Some less labor intensive hobbies include painting and video games. You could even enjoy the performing arts with your local theatre. If those don’t fill the time well enough, there is a wide variety of potential hobbies out there that could be fun.
Turn your attention to the next sport
This is the safest area. With the NBA in full swing, the transition tends to be pretty seamless for us. If you’re an unfortunate sole who is a fan of one of the six teams that aren’t in the NBA playoffs this is a tough place to be.
Major League Baseball is still a couple of months away from starting, and outside of people who root for teams that are drafting in the top-10, this might not be the best option.
In that case, you might as well stay committed to the mission of following the Buckeyes. We will get to the two ways to do that next, but before we do there are a lot of angles to follow additional sports.
ESPN+ has Cricket — can I say without shame that I now know what wicket is? No, but I have watched more than I thought. There is a level of learning to new sports, but with so many options, I’m sure you can find something.
Sports betting is also legal, and throwing a few bones on a game will always increase the viewer experience. It will never replace the rush of Ohio State football, but in a responsible manner and with our betting partner DraftKings, why not throw down an offseason wager or two?
Follow any of Ohio State’s Spring Sports with the same vigor
There will be no mention about Ohio State’s men’s basketball team due to the unfortunate state of their season. Even without the natural Buckeye transition, the Ohio State athletic program has some highly ranked, competitive sports. This might be the easiest way to transfer your football energy, as there is already a bias heading into the following.
The Buckeyes are ranked fourth in men’s wrestling, 13th in women’s basketball, seventh in men’s hockey, and first in men’s tennis. That gives plenty of options to pivot your attention to during the football offseason — and you don’t have to buy new gear. These teams may end up breaking your heart, but the journey is always the friends you make along the way. The best part is you won’t have to go anywhere else to get coverage of these teams.
Getting into other Buckeye teams has never been easier with the Big Ten Network, and if these programs keep winning, there is no reason you can’t have a lot of fun.
Become a message board genius
At the end of the day we’re all here because there is no way out. This is our life. Thursday will get here and the attention will shift immediately to recruiting. With the additions of NIL, transfers, and realignment still center stage, there is never a shortage of conversation to be had. That is where message boards and platforms like Twitter become the outlet to unleash our fandom on the world.
You may carve some wood sculptures or catch up on all your shows, but you and I both know that is not how it ends. The rumors of a five-star recruit taking a spring visit will eat at your mind until you get an update. A Notre Dame fan will spew nonsensical praise about Marcus Freeman, and you’ll have to remind them what happened last season. This is the way of life we have chosen, and even with an effort to step away, the game will always bring you back.
There will always be another recruit, another fan base, and another debate to be had. While you try to expand your horizons, we all end up back to making a depth chart projection ahead of Spring Practice, We will have our conspiracies to discuss and that is what makes this sport so great. The grind never stops, and that is the life of the fan. As long as there is an Ohio State football, we will never go a day with out it.
With the football offseason officially here, we begin the long road back to watching Ohio State on Saturday’s in the Shoe – or any football at all. That realization sucks, but there are things to do to fill the void.
If you’re like me, you’ll probably just skip to message board genius and grind away until the Buckeyes play again.