Ohio State football: Toughen up, Buckeye fans

IOWA CITY, IOWA- NOVEMBER 04: Wide receiver Johnnie Dixon
IOWA CITY, IOWA- NOVEMBER 04: Wide receiver Johnnie Dixon /

Ohio State hasn’t played up to expectations. After so many reactions to Saturday’s loss to Iowa, it is time for some tough love.

Last week’s loss to Iowa likely shuts Ohio State out of the playoffs for the 2017 season. Thus, leading to wide spread disappointment among Buckeye Nation faithful. While a national championship is no longer within reach, a Big Ten championship is still something the Buckeyes can earn this season.

With three regular season games left and a potential conference title game appearance, the season is not over. Judging by how fans have reacted to the Iowa loss, though, you’d think that wasn’t the case. It’s time to toughen up.

It’s everywhere right now, from the comments section of our lessons piece about the Iowa game to a poll from Ari Wasserman:

How can 28% of Buckeye fans say the season is over with a Big Ten title still on the line? How can you say this when Michigan is still on the schedule?

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Ohio State made the USA Today Misery Index this week, but that doesn’t mean we can all go home and ignore the last three games on the schedule. No one feels good about getting rolled by Iowa, but we’re all tougher than this, Buckeye fans.

How important are these remaining games? Let’s set aside winning the Big Ten for a second.

Both Earle Bruce and John Cooper got fired for losing too often to Michigan. Let’s not forget that The Game is still only three weeks away and should be circled on any Buckeye fan’s calendar no matter what.

After Cooper, Jim Tressel became a Buckeye legend not just for his national championship in 2002, but his five straight Big Ten titles from 2005-2009. Not to mention his 9-1 record against Michigan. No one will say those seasons were failures for “only” winning the Big Ten and dominating the biggest rival on the schedule.

The bar has been set very high, starting with the powerhouse teams that Tressel coached and the high profile hire of Urban Meyer. 2014’s success only set that bar higher, giving fans the expectation that the Buckeyes should be at the very least in the playoffs every year.

The fact of the matter is that only four schools can make it every year. If it was easy, everyone could do it.

Heading into a pivotal stretch of games that mean the difference between a good season or a Big Ten championship season, Ohio State fans need to remember there are meaningful games left to be played.

There are rivals to be beaten. There are championships to be won. Meyer, for all of Ohio State’s success, has only one lone Big Ten championship on his record.

Next: Iowa shocked OSU in an embarrassing loss

It’s not too late to change that for 2017. So toughen up, Buckeye fans. The season isn’t over yet.