Pat Forde is an Ignorant Hack (Notes on Ohio State)

Pat Forde “covered” the BCS National Championship game for ESPN.com with this article.

In that article, Forde basically lambasted the Ohio State Buckeyes for losing to LSU in the national championship game.

An example of Forde’s “journalism” can be seen in this quote.

If you’ve ever seen lions maul a water buffalo, you’ve seen the last two title games. You’ve seen a fierce pair of SEC teams — Florida last year, LSU this year — blow the vulnerable Buckeyes back to the Bratwurst Belt by a combined 41 points. You’ve seen the best of one league flex, and the best of an inferior league collapse.

Now, let me explain something.  Ohio State was beaten by a superior team last night in Louisiana.  That much is true.  What I don’t understand is the venom with which people are discussing Ohio State this season.  Ohio State was supposed to be on the outside looking in when it came to the national championship this year.  They lost a huge amount of talent to the NFL after last season.  They didn’t schedule a particularly difficult roster of opponents like they have in years past when they put Texas on the non-conference schedule.  This was supposed to be a rebuilding year for the Buckeyes.

They were picked to finish third in the Big 10 behind Michigan and Wisconsin.  They weren’t at the top of any of the polls until all these other teams started to fail miserably.  Ohio State fans root like crazy, even in rebuilding years.  After Ohio State lost to Illinois there were no cries of unfairness as Ohio State dropped out of the number one slot.  They weren’t supposed to get a sniff of the number one slot to begin with this season.

So, where does all the hatred come from?

Ohio State didn’t have any Heisman finalists.  Ohio State lost many players to the draft in 2007.  Todd Boeckman was a first time starter and questionable at QB.  Yet, the national media spent all this time slamming Ohio State like they were loaded with Troy Smith, Ted Ginn, and Anthony Gonzalez all over again to try and beat the SEC.

This was supposed to be a rebuilding year.

Can someone please tell the media that they missed the point of this story?  Ohio State being a perennial failure doesn’t wash.  They should be considered an over-achiever at best or proof that the BCS system didn’t work THIS YEAR at worst.

The fact is that Ohio State didn’t unfairly lobby their way into the game.  They didn’t walk into the game with the cocky attitude that earned them an embarrassing defeat last year against Florida.  All they did was show up when they were asked to play.  So if you want to toss some venom around, these media members like Pat Forde should probably reserve it for the BCS, Mizzou, WVU or someone else who failed miserably this season.

I would say Ohio State did quite well considering this was their rebuilding year.

  • http://mainelife.typepad.com Mainelife

    Totally agreed. This was one of the biggest over-achieving teams in D-1 this year and all they get is grief.
    This article is yellow journalism at best, and a personal agenda at worst.

  • http://www.collegesportspro.com Andrew Perkins

    Couldn’t agree more.

    It’s quite funny (odd), come to think of it.

    I’m a Buckeyes fan and I was less worried and upset about the Buckeyes losing and more worried and upset about the thought of the negative media and the overblown SEC ego that would follow an LSU win.

    You hit the nail on the head. Good post.

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com Craig

    Thanks. Nice to know some people out there agree with me a bit. I have been called an apologist already. Oh well.

  • Gamecock Man

    I for the most part agree with you. Forde is def. a hack, like most of his ESPN brethren. One thing I’ve been left wondering is, if these guys think OSU is so awful, and most of them have votes in the AP poll, why did they vote OSU into the title game? A lot of them had the opportunity to vote USC or some other team in, but chose not to.

    But one thing I think you should keep in mind, though, is that before last years game vs. Florida, many OSU fans said that the Gators didn’t have a chance in hell. I specifically remember an obnoxious fan posting on a board that Florida wouldn’t be able to hang because they weren’t able to blow out teams like South Carolina (my school) and Kentucky. I think the resentment of OSU from SEC fans stems from that a backlash against that attitude. I’m not saying that other schools don’t have obnoxious fans, but the OSU and MIchigan fans were particularly insulting last year before their teams took it from Florida and USC. People like to see arrogant fans suffer.

  • http://www.filteringcraig.com Craig

    OSU fans were very arrogant last year. I think that is the nature of seeing your team go wire to wire in the number 1 slot. Add to that the fact that Troy Smith goes on to win the Heisman and it was a perfect storm of ego-boost at the highest level. That doesn’t justify it, but that is what happened.

    To think that that attitude persevered through one of the most embarrassing defeats in college football history at the hands of Florida is ridiculous. The team and its fanbase was humbled immensely after that.

    For whatever reason the embarrassing defeat wasn’t enough for the national football audience. They kept right on going with the hatred into this season as if Ohio State fans didn’t realize that their team was in rebuilding mode after losing so many top of the draft starters.

  • http://www.collegesportspro.com/ Andrew

    I just read Forde’s article. I guess I skimmed it before. He’s harsh. That’s a one sided opinion meant to cause some friction among Big 10 pundits, especially Buckeye fans.

    Like me… I’m from Akron

  • Gamecock Man

    I’m just saying, Buckeye fans created this to a certain degree. You say that going wire to wire at number 1 gives you a right to be arrogant, but what does going wire to wire at number 1 mean other than that the media crowned OSU the national champ before the 06 season and then they whipped their way through an easy schedule? This is another part of the problem, and it isn’t really OSU’s fault, but a lot of fans of other schools were honestly disgusted by how the media treated OSU and Michigan during the 06 season. It wasn’t fun to have to listen to how two teams who played weak schedules were obviously the best two teams because they were winning by wide margins, while your team was struggling through a brutal schedule. As always with the media, things have changed now, and the Big 10 is getting a lot of venom because OSU hasn’t played well in the two championship games. That’s not fair either, and unfortunately the ESPN talking heads can’t look at things fairly. It’s all about sensation with them, as you see in this Pat Forde article. I honestly don’t think OSU has anything to be ashamed of after their performance the other night. They would’ve been in the game if not for a number of dumb penalties. Roughing the punter on 4th and 23 is pretty stupid. They’ll be back next year; if they can beat USC early, I think they’ll make another run at the title, and will maybe have better luck in the championship game.

  • http://gate21.net lawvol

    As much as I am a SEC fan, I think the whole SEC vs. Big Ten thing has been so blown out of proportion. I pretty much laid it out in my post on the game:
    http://gate21.net/2008/01/08/thoughts-on-the-bcs-championship-game/
    ============
    - lawvol: http://Gate21.net – Life, the Universe, & College Football

  • Gamecock Man

    I actually agree, lawvol. I love SEC football and enjoy our current bragging rights, but I know things change in a hurry. In the late 90s, the SEC was much weaker than it is now; current powers like Auburn, LSU, and Georgia were down, and current middle-of-the-pack teams like South Carolina were cupcakes. It could happen again; for example, how will South Carolina be after Spurrier retires/leaves? On the other hand, the Big 10 is down right now, but some teams, like Michigan and Illinois, look to be improving. Plus, while the Big 10 has suffered some embarrasing losses such as OSU’s championship games, at the same time teams like Wisconsin and Michigan have actually been fairly succesful against the SEC in recent bowl games. I know Wisconsin won back to back Cap One bowls against favored SEC teams Auburn and Arkansas.

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