Ohio State is set to meet Florida on Monday in the Gator Bowl and while the hype has surrounded two proud programs in the midst of down seasons and coach Urban Meyer, the game is also giving displaced Buckeyes something to cheer about.
Ohio State fans in north Florida are ready to reveal their Buckeye pride and turnout to support the scarlet and grey when they take on the Gators in Jacksonville.
The game has been touted as a "Meyer Bowl" with the coach having led the Gators to a pair of national titles and recently agreeing to become coach of the scandal plagued Buckeyes next season.
Meyer won't be coaching as the Buckeyes and Gators meet for the first time since the Gators beat the Buckeyes in the BCS championship game five years ago. But his arrival in Columbus has given Ohio State hope and the Buckeyes' arrival in Jacksonville is an opportunity for their fans in Florida to come out and show their support.
Scott Winer, president of the Ohio State Alumni Club of Northeast Florida, told Jacksonville.com that the Northeast chapter has about 100 active members. But he said the school has tracked about 3,500 living alumni who reside within a 90-mile radius of Jacksonville, and he hopes the Buckeyes being in the Gator Bowl will result in an increase in membership.
"We know there are Buckeyes all over," Winer said. "And we do more than just get together for football games. We're funding three scholarships right now for area kids to go to Ohio State and we'd love for that number to grow."
While Winer and other northern Florida Buckeye fans are trapped in SEC country, they do have some successful history to brag about and be proud of.
The Buckeyes have won seven national championships, the last coming in 2002, and 34 Big Ten championships, second to Michigan. Ohio State is also one of nine teams to have won each of the original New Year's Day bowls: the Rose, Sugar, Cotton and Orange.
"A lot of the great accomplishments, athletics or otherwise, get overshadowed by football," Winer said . "They're not necessarily buried but when you've had the success that the football team has, it's understandable. Whenever someone sees me in an Ohio State shirt, the conversation always starts with football."
- Shavers Carries Purdue Past Western Michigan for Pizza Bowl Victory
- Gator Bowl Gives Ohio State Fans in Florida Chance to Show Their Buckeye Pride
- Independence Bowl: Missouri Pounds North Carolina
- Hawaii Bowl: Southern Miss Holds Off Nevada
- Maaco Bowl: Moore Leads Boise State Over Arizona State
- Ohio State Football Team Banned from Postseason Play in 2012
- New Orleans Bowl: Field Goal Lifts Louisiana-Lafayette
- Gildan New Mexico Bowl: Temple Kicks Off Bowl Season in Joyous Fashion
- CNN Denied Past Police Report into Sandusky Matter
- Penn State Assistant Mike McQueary Testifies Seeing Sandusky Molesting Boy
- Southern Miss Hires Ellis Johnson as New Coach
- Cincinnati and Xavier Issue Suspensions Following Ugly Brawl
- North Carolina Edges Charlotte for NCAA Men's Soccer Title
- Irony Bowl: Florida Gators Take on Ohio State with Urban Meyer Looming
- Baylor QB Robert Griffin III Captures 2011 Heisman Trophy
- Sumlin Returns as New Texas A&M Head Coach
- Jim L. Mora to be Named Football Coach at UCLA
- Charlie Weis Introduced as New Football Coach at Kansas
- Sandusky Posts Bail, Placed Under House Arrest; Wife States Support
- Big East Adds 5 New Programs Starting in 2013
- Illinois Names Tim Beckman New Football Coach
- Oregon State Freshman Football Player Fred Thompson Dies
- Ohio Economy Could Benefit with Urban Meyer Hiring at Ohio State
- LSU and Alabama Set for a Rematch in BCS Title Game
- Baylor's Griffin and Stanford's Luck Headline Heisman Finalists
- Alabama's Trent Richardson Favorite to Take Home Heisman?
- Former Syracuse Assistant Basketball Coach Fine Won't Face New York Charges
- New Sex Abuse Charges for Ex-Penn State Football Assistant Sandusky
- Paterno Had Business Deal with Second Mile Charity Board Members
- Linebacker U Products
- Southern Miss Football Coach Larry Fedora to Take Over at UNC
- Western Kentucky Rewards Coach Taggart with Four-Year Pact
- Football Factories or Learning Centers?
- Mathieu, Hilliard Spark LSU to Rout of Georgia in SEC Title Clash
- Defense, Ground Game Lead No. 3 Oklahoma State Past Rival Oklahoma
- Wisconsin Wins Round Two over Michigan State; Smell Roses Again
- Austin Davis, Southern Mississippi Crush Houston's BCS Dream
- Moore Leads Boise State to Rout of New Mexico
- UAB Set to Name Garrick McGee New Football Coach
Copyright © 2011 AHN - All Rights Reserved