Preview No. 12: That Team Up North

"Oh no! We suck again!"

“Oh no! We suck again!”

This is the 12th in a series of articles previewing Ohio State’s 12 opponents for the 2014 season.

To conclude the regular season, Ohio State hosts That Team Up North on Nov. 29. The start time and television network that will air “The Game” have yet to be announced, but it will likely be a 12:00 noon kickoff on ABC.

Last Season:

That Team Up North finished the 2013 season unranked with an overall record of 7-6, and finished fifth in the Legends Division of the Big Ten Conference at 3-5. The seven wins came against Central Michigan (59-9), Notre Dame (41-30), Akron (28-24), Connecticut (24-21), Minnesota (42-14), Indiana (63-47), and Northwestern (27-19, 3 OT). The six losses were to Penn State (43-40, OT), Michigan State (26-9), Nebraska (17-13), Iowa (24-21), Ohio State (42-41), and Kansas State (31-14) in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl.

History and Coaches:

That Team Up North began football in 1879. Local football historians tend to think that it was more or less a pillow fight involving a ball with some fraternity members on campus. Later, some bright thinkers at the U of M thought that maybe they should play against other colleges instead of playing with themselves. So with the help of Morse Code, the schoolboys from Ann Arbor arranged a play date with a team they knew that they could beat, Racine College.

During a delightful spring afternoon on May 30, 1879, That Team Up North took on Racine College at White Stockings Park in Chicago. According to historical accounts, midway through the first “inning,” Irving Kane Pond scored the first touchdown for the boys from Ann Arbor.

Immediately after that, fans of the Maize and Blue trekked to the nearest Walmart to buy anything and everything with the school’s name and logo on it.

That Team Up North dominated intercollegiate football in the Upper Midwest for the first few decades of the sport’s existence. Six of the U of M’s claimed national titles came during a span of 23 seasons from 1901-1923. But only twice since the inception of the Associated Press college football poll in 1938 has That Team Up North finished ranked No. 1 at the end of the year, and that happened in 1948 and 1997.

Most Walmart Wolverines will point out to you, albeit in nearly incomprehensible gibberish, that the U of M has the most all-time wins in college football history at 910. While that is true, most of those “wins” came when the rules of football stated that touchdowns count only four points, the forward pass was not allowed, and there was no tackling below the waist or above the shoulders.

Oh, did I mention that the ball was round, too?

Yada, yada, yada.

Since the beginning of the 21st century, That Team Up North is 105-59 overall, but are just 2-11 against Ohio State. (Say “State” you fat Mother#^@%*&!!!!!)

Offense:

It’s not very good.

Defense:

It’s worse than the offense.