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Ohio State football fans bring traditions rivaling OU's own

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People tailgate on the north side of OU's campus off Asp Avenue before the game against the University of Louisiana at Monroe Sept. 10. One of the Ohio State tailgating traditions is having a die-hard fan dress up as the "Buck-I-Guy."

Come kickoff Saturday night, one OU student plans to double-dip in the Sooner and Buckeye festivities.

Human relations senior Aaron Rogers was born and raised a Buckeyes fan, and the team's traditions are still important to him. 

Rogers hails from central Ohio and grew up attending Ohio State football games. He said he came to OU for the meteorology program his freshman year, but ended up switching his major.

“When I switched my major I decided to finish off my education at OU," Rogers said. "I just really love the atmosphere and community here.” 

Ohio State and OU share a history of strong football programs with similar traditions. Some of Rogers' favorite traditions are singing “Carmen Ohio,” and chanting “O-H-I-O,” he said.  

“The stadium divides into four sections and each section spells out a different letter of Ohio. It is basically Boomer Sooner, but the Buckeye version,” he said. “We also sing our fight song, 'Carmen Ohio.' It’s our Alma Mater and has always been with the university.”

One unique Ohio State tailgate tradition includes a die-hard fan who dresses up as “the Buck-I-Guy,” — a name the Buckeye nation gave him, Rogers said.  

“Growing up I always saw him (the Buck-I-Guy) around tailgates," he said. "He wears an all white outfit with an OSU logo cape. He even dyes his facial hair red and wears a cowboy hat."

Julie Jackson, a marketing junior at Ohio State University, said there are traditions everywhere at Ohio State. Some of Jackson’s favorite traditions take place during the week leading up to playing The University of Michiganone of Ohio State’s biggest rivalries.

“During Michigan week, students put X’s on every M they can find on campus and of course the Mirror Lake jump. Students go to Mirror Lake, essentially a pond, and jump in at 11 p.m.,” Jackson said over the phone, “I avoid this one for obvious reasons.”

Skull Session is another Ohio State tradition that occurs during football season. The Skull Session is a pep rally that helps the team and fans get excited for the game. After the band performs at the pep rally, the football team gets to speak to the crows, Rogers said. 

“In 2001 Coach Tressel brought the players over to the Skull Session and now it is a tradition where the coach and captain speak to the fans,” he said.

Noah Fox, journalism sophomore at Ohio State University, said Ohio State’s Skull Session tradition is his favorite. 

“I enjoy the Skull Session the most because it is a pure adrenaline rush when the band plays, and speaking of that, the best tradition is when the band plays 'Carmen Ohio,'” Fox said.

Being an Ohio State fan and an OU fan has taught Rogers how to enjoy both teams, he said.

“I get to see my favorite team play at my university, which is pretty cool,” he said. “It's going to be really fun for me to watch two coaching icons.”

When asked about who he thinks is going to win Saturday, Rogers said he was unsure.

“I think it will be a really close game," Rogers said. "I can’t wait to see what both teams bring to the table.” 

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