Josh Grimm: Sugar Bowl MVP

I am a man of reason.

With few exceptions, I’m pretty calculating, I certainly try to control what I can, and I’m much more likely to believe in statistical possibility as opposed to supernatural intervention. However, the one area I am, without a doubt, ridiculously superstitious, is when it comes to sports. And the crazy is most concentrated when I watch my Ohio State Buckeyes play football.

It’s a bizarre ritual with a million unwritten rules. I can’t talk to my friend Jared during a Buckeye game (unless we’re watching the game together, though we rarely risk it). I can’t wear Ohio State gear within a few days of the game, even if it’s by accident. I really can’t boast about a potential victory–it’s the kiss of death. If the game is going badly, I have to pause it for awhile (thanks, Tivo) and, by the time I catch up (fast-forwarding through commercials) that normally gives the team enough time to overcome whatever curse I’ve placed on them. Don’t believe in curses? I bragged non-stop about how Ohio State would dominate Florida in the 2006 National Championship game (and I listened to the song “Remember the Name” when I went running before that fateful night), and we know how that turned out.

And that’s the real problem with this kind of arrangement: I take the blame for the big losses (I watched the infamous Purdue loss with a group of strangers and accepted a handful of Buckeyes before the game began, I couldn’t watch the Wisconsin game live this year…) but, because I’m just that kind of guy, I make sure that the players and coaches deservedly get credit for the victory.

Last night, the players and coaches did their job (especially in the first half), but I think it’s time for my contributions to be recognized. Here is a list of what I did to secure victory:

• I did not contact Jared during the game (and obviously not John or Nate either)

• When the game got tight, I paused it via DVR and, after about 20 minutes of Parks and Recreation, I watched the game live

• I did not wear any Ohio State gear and downplayed the chances of the Buckeyes (though that wasn’t too hard after the Big Ten New Year’s Day debacle)

• During the first half (before Tressel decided to sit on an 18-point lead for 30 minutes–thereby making the Arkansas defense actually feel like it was doing something as opposed to stuffing nine men in the box to stop Herron), I was drinking Pepsi with an occasional sip of A&W Root Beer. During the second half, I tried to alternate the two in order to predict what was causing the success

• In the middle of the first half, I noticed I was sweating (because I sweat a lot when I’m nervous) and I was afraid my shirt smelled. So, I went into my room to change shirts, but then realized that I could ruin the game. So, after taking the shirt off, I actually put the damn thing back on

For reals.

I am a bonafide crazy person when it comes to watching Ohio State football. And it gave us a ridiculous victory over Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl.

You’re welcome.

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