As a lifelong Ohio State football fan, I’ve spent a lot of time appreciating the Buckeyes’ success in bowl games, their ability to bring in the best recruits, and their sheer domination of That School Up North. So it was great to find out that the football team takes one day out of the year to appreciate me and the rest of the student body. Student Appreciation Day was a tradition that started a few years ago as a way to thank the rest of the Ohio State community for our support. Students are invited to sit on the field in the indoor practice facility and watch the team prepare for the upcoming season. We got a first look at how the new players acclimated to being on the team and how the returning players were working to build on last season.
(In my head) “Wow, there must be so many turf pellets in their shoes.” Credit: Ohio State Athletics
Throughout the practice, they let the spectators participate in a few (easy) drills, and they even had a field goal kicking competition where the winner received a certificate for a year of free Chick-fil-A!
Once the practice activities ended, students got a chance to meet the players. I am always a little nervous about going up to people and asking for pictures, but I could not pass up this opportunity. I got a few pictures, including this one with incoming freshman Garrett Wilson.
Sure, he was the second-best wide receiver in the country and I was an outstandingly average high school cross country runner, but who’s pointing at who?
Overall, I think Student Appreciation Day is a big win for everybody, especially in the middle of a long off-season. The players get a chance to meet up close their most passionate group of fans, and students get a rare view of the team that makes everyone excited for September. My one regret is that I only learned about the event this year!