Creating the Extraordinary Student Experience : Office of Student Life

Beat Michigan Week

History

From ESPN's "10 Greatest Rivalries":

When Ohio Stadium opened in 1922, Michigan spoiled the party with a 22-0 victory. The rivalry was heated in the early days as both have been long-time college football powers. But it got even hotter in 1969, when Bo Schembechler took over as Michigan's coach and upset Woody Hayes' No. 1-ranked, undefeated Buckeyes. Four times in the next six years, both teams were ranked in the top five when they met. In 1970 and 1973, both were undefeated (they tied 10-10 in 1973). From 1970 through 1975, Michigan entered without a loss every year. The Wolverines won just once. Ohio State was 9-0-1 in 1993, 11-0 in 1995 and 10-0 in 1996. The Buckeyes lost each time.

Trivia

  • Ohio State didn’t win until the 16th game in the series (1919).
  • From 1968 through 1980 (that’s a 13 year period) the Big Ten Rose Bowl rep, was either Ohio State or Michigan.
  • Jim Tressel was only the fourth coach in Ohio State football history to win his first game against Michigan and only the 2nd Ohio State coach to start 2-0 against the Wolverines. The other was Francis Schmidt, who started 4-0 from 1934 to 1937.
  • Schmidt also introduced the tradition of the "gold pants." After accepting the coaching position, he was asked how he expected to cope with the OSU nemesis from Ann Arbor. His matter-of-fact answer developed into a cliché: "They put their pants on one leg at a time same as everybody else." Schmidt’s comment led to the formation of the “Golden Pants Club,” which awarded miniature gold football pants to all players who had a hand in a victory over the Wolverines.
  • Biggest margin of victory in the series for the Buckeyes was in Schmidt’s second season, 38-0 in Ann Arbor.
  • Under Tressel, the Buckeyes posted a 8-1 record against arch-rival Michigan.
  • This year (2014) will mark the 111th game between the two Universities.

More information is available at the University Archives.