If you believe everything you read, that’s how Ohio State fans should view the Buckeyes’ unblemished season. The 12 victories—some hard fought, some easier than others—with no reward, no meaning and no point because of Ohio State’s postseason ban.
Truly believing that, though, requires quite a bit of effort.
You would need to discredit the Buckeyes for finishing the regular season undefeated despite the fact that only two teams out of 120 managed to do so this year. Ohio State has only put together two undefeated seasons over the last 38 years, but that should be ignored because history is for nerds, right?
You would also need to completely wipe out every memory of last year’s 6-7 campaign. Going 12-0 one year after that disaster some people like to call the 2011 Ohio State Buckeyes is nothing short of a miracle, but you’ll need to forget about that entirely to demean this year’s perfect season.
Forget the fact that no team in over 40 years has posted an undefeated record the year after a losing season. Turnarounds like this just don’t happen in modern college football, but seriously, who cares? It doesn’t matter because Ohio State can’t play in a bowl game this year.
It doesn’t stop there.
You would also need to tell every player on that team, especially the seniors, that the work they put in this year meant nothing. All the two-a-days, film, scouting and workout sessions, preparation and execution was just wasted energy.
Who cares what kind of physical transformation these guys went through in order to switch from an archaic power offense to Urban Meyer’s spread system in a nine-month span? Losing nearly 500 pounds of fat and gaining over 500 pounds of muscle during the offseason was great and all, but can these guys squat-lift their way to a bowl game?
No? Then who cares?
Regaining the status as the top-dog in the conference would also need to be pretty meaningless. The Buckeyes got revenge against each of the five conference teams that beat them last year, while proving themselves superior over their archrival in Michigan.
But none of those games were played in January in some nice coastal stadium, so they didn’t matter.
You would need to ignore the fact that this year’s success sets Ohio State up as one of a handful of contenders in 2013.
If the Buckeyes can somehow run the table next year, it will be a direct result of the groundwork this year’s team laid as a foundation. It wouldn’t be that uncommon for teams coached by Urban Meyer. His last two coaching stints have produced a perfect 12-0 team at Utah and a national title winning team at Florida during his second year at those schools.
Winning it all next year would likely mean Ohio State would finish the 2013 season on a 26-game winning streak. Apparently the first half of that journey wouldn’t have mattered much.
So sure, if you can manage to ignore all of that, then Ohio State’s 2012 season was pointless.
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