Reality has begun to set in for most in Buckeye nation—their beloved Scarlet and Gray cannot make a run to the BCS National Championship game without help
Ohio State needs some good, old-fashioned BCS chaos to make its way to Pasadena, not for the Rose Bowl, but for that crystal football.
In fact, it may need the most help of any undefeated team in the country.
The good news is that BCS chaos is nothing new—just ask Oklahoma State.
First things first: Ohio State has to win the Big Ten Championship and go undefeated. Lose in any of the coming weeks and it's all over for the Buckeyes.
But what exactly are the scenarios that will help OSU into the national championship game?
Let's explore them together.
*Andy Coppens is Bleacher Report's lead writer for the Big Ten. You can follow him on Twitter: @ andycoppens.
Nov. 30 is the date to circle on your calendars as the best hope for Ohio State making the BCS National Championship game.
Not only is it "The Game" against that school up north, but Alabama and Auburn go at it in the Iron Bowl that day.
Both of these SEC West teams appear on a collision course as Top 10 teams, and the game happens to be in Auburn this year.
Nick Marshall has led a resurgence of the Tigers program in a big way. His threat as a runner (734 yards, 7.1 average, 7 touchdowns) and passer (58.6 completion percentage, 1,301 yards, 8 touchdowns) has given the Tigers life offensively.
With Marshall behind center the Tigers have a chance at the upset, despite a defense that has given up a lot of yards to the opposition.
Ohio State fans won't just be rooting on their Buckeyes, they'll also become the big Auburn fans that final Saturday of the regular season.
Odds of This Happening: 5/1
The term "Clemsoning" has been abused the media this season, but it should be used as a warning for Florida State in this case.
The Seminoles can't afford to overlook a sneaky Syracuse team this weekend—especially since this has trap game written all over it.
The Orange come in 5-4 and have only lost to Clemson and Georgia Tech in ACC play.
No doubt this will be the biggest road test for the Orange, and FSU is a 39-point favorite, but this Syracuse team won't just roll over.
The Orange rank in the top 30 nationally in rushing and are stingy enough on defense (22.9 points a game) to at least be able to give the Seminoles' offense a test.
It's a long shot, but we've seen teams overlook inferior opponents in conference play before a big game.
Florida State can't take Syracuse lightly.
Odds of This Happening: 500/1
Let's say Alabama survives the Iron Bowl. There's still an opportunity for Ohio State's dream scenario to play out and that's in the SEC Championship game.
The SEC West is on a four-game win streak in the conference championship game and Florida won't be appearing in the title game across the field from Alabama.
Considering the Crimson Tide have only beaten the Gators in the SEC championship game once in six attempts, that should be music to the ears of Nick Saban and Co.
The only question is who will be in Atlanta this year?
With Missouri playing some high-octane football and winning games over two ranked SEC opponents, it won't be intimidated by playing its old Big 12 foe, Texas A&M, to end the season.
As long as it beats the Aggies, Missouri is going to the SEC championship game.
If the Tigers go down, then look to South Carolina—the team that beat Missouri—to be heading to Atlanta for the first time since 2010.
Either way, the SEC East champion's motivation will be high to spoil 'Bama's three-peat opportunity and go to the Sugar Bowl themselves.
That would be music to the ears of Ohio State backers everywhere.
Odds of This Happening: 7/1
What, you thought we were done talking about the S-E-C? Think again folks, because Ohio State needs to become a fan of one other team from the conference it loathes on the final week of the season—Florida.
The Gators are a mess right now and head coach Will Muschamp is under extreme heat in the Sunshine State.
Florida is facing the real possibility of a must win to produce a simple winning season in this bitter rivalry game.
What better way to keep your job than to not only end the regular season by beating your rival, but to also lend a helping hand to the current team of your ex-coach all at once?
It would be the double whammy to the Seminoles' season. No matter what the Gators' record is, that alone could be all worth it.
Of course, that means the Gators need to find a cure for what is ailing it right now and unless the fountain of youth and NCAA regulations have been thrown out the window, Tim Tebow isn't walking through those doors in Gainseville to suit up for this one.
Yet, this could be the best opportunity left to see FSU drop a game this year and that means Ohio State fans rooting on the former team of their head coach.
Odds of This Happening: 25/1
It's anyone's guess who comes out of the ACC's Coastal Division, but Ohio State fans might have to cheer for the major upset.
It could be Virginia Tech, Miami, Duke, Georgia Tech or even North Carolina. Yes, that's five of the seven teams in the Coastal Division still alive for the division crown.
Are any of them serious challengers to the Seminoles' crown? Miami wasn't just a few weeks ago and won't be without star running back Duke Johnson.
Of the rest, Ohio State fans need to be cheering for Virginia Tech. The Hokies are the best of the remaining bunch, which isn't saying all that much (loses to Duke and Boston College will do that to a reputation).
Florida State appears to have a pretty clear path against just about anyone else, including the odd matchup against Georgia Tech.
If it has to come down to this ACC Championship game scenario playing out, Ohio State's chances at the final BCS National Championship game are in some serious trouble.
Odds of This Happening: 250:1
Yes, Baylor sits two spots behind Ohio State in the most recent BCS Rankings, but looking in the rear-view mirror and seeing the Bears' schedule should scare the Buckeyes a bit.
A scenario where they get jumped is a real possibility and therefore Ohio State needs Baylor to wake up and stop thinking they are the Oregon of the Southwest...err Big 12.
With games against Oklahoma State and Texas still on its schedule there are some major opportunities for the Bears to take themselves out of contention, and thus clear the path even more for Ohio State.
It isn't a huge concern just yet, but if Baylor gets by Oklahoma State, its resume becomes a lot better.
So, OSU fans, you need to become OSU fans on November 23, 2013. If that doesn't happen, how about a quadruple-header of games with a vested interest on the day of the Big Ten Championship for your viewing pleasure?
That's when Texas and Baylor hook up and it could be for the Big 12 title.
Either scenario works out just fine for Ohio State though.
Odds of This Happening: 2/1