Have you ever wanted to be part of your favorite Big Ten football team? Well, you can't. You're not nearly good enough at football to do that. Sorry, but someone had to tell you that.
There's always fandom though, and that's good enough for the rest of us. And the best fandom is the type that's cultivated and nurtured by the football program itself, one that gets its students even more involved than the standard "showing up and cheering" on game day.
That's why Ohio State's new tradition, the "Quick Cals" ("cals" being short for calisthenics), looks so cool. Here's the official announcement of the tradition, via Eleven Warriors:
OK, when it's presented like that, it seems a little aberrant and confusing, doesn't it? A reasonable fan could ask why are we doing this? and based on what we're seeing in that video, that fan would have a point.
But the genius involved here is what that tradition turns into when there's an entire team doing it—and an entire student section, with thousands of the most bloodthirsty (and probably inebriated) Buckeye faithful joining in. For a sense of that, check out this footage from a recent student town hall meeting, with Ohio State strength coach Mickey Marotti teaching the attending fans the moves.
Of course Mike Vrabel's totally into this.
Now all of a sudden, when you've got all your student friends around and your team in front of you, this whole drill seems like all kinds of fun, doesn't it? It's like the Big Ten's version of the haka. And moreover, just watching that video one time through, you already know the drill, don't you?
So this'll be a thing in Columbus—and it won't stop there. Doubtless, there'll be more than a couple athletic departments in the Big Ten who see this video and ask themselves, "wait, why isn't our team doing any pregame rituals with the students?" And that's a good question.