Picture yourself as a high school student in say, Bowling Green, Ohio, about a decade ago.
It is Black Friday. Your mom and sisters go shopping while your Dad watches the news. New president Barack Obama is talking. You go to your room and flip on The Apprentice with some guy named Donald Trump on it.
Your Boost phone “chirps” of a buddy wanting to know if you want to play Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare on the 360. You can’t you say because you are going to the big football game.
The rivalry is in its correct place on the last weekend of football’s regular season, and you are hoping that the Falcons win the Peace Pipe, which went to the winner of the rivalry game back in those days.
You get online and change your Myspace profile song from “Party In The USA” to “Ay Ziggy Zoomba”. You get a message on MSN messenger from your girlfriend who wants you to go the Woodland Mall with her. You decline because even then that mall was pretty empty. Although, you do have a new pink shirt you would love to wear out.
On your way to the game, your Dad talk’s sports with you while letting you pick the music. “Boom, Boom, Pow” by the Black Eyed Peas it is. Your Browns are having a rough year with Eric Mangini as coach, but you have faith in Brady Quinn as ending the Browns long struggle at quarterback. (You poor, poor, soul.)
You are excited for how the Cleveland Cavaliers look. You love LeBron James, the native Ohio son. He’s for sure going to spend his career in Cleveland and win multiple titles.
As you get to Doyt Perry Stadium, it is cold and windy as is usual for Blowing Green. You make note to post that as your MSN status later. Most students are gone for holiday break, but its okay. You hope that your Aeropostle winter jacket will keep you warm enough.
The Rockets are warming up, they are in Tim Beckham’s first season. He seems to really care about his players, but you miss cracking jokes about Tom Amstutz. How did he even beat Michigan in the Big House? Surely, Rich Rodriguez will figure it out.
Oh, Ohio State plays Michigan tomorrow. Man, that Jim Tressel runs a clean program, doesn’t he? But right now, that doesn’t matter. You realize Toledo needs a win to become bowl eligible and just beat Eastern Michigan a week ago.
It’s a pivotal game, and the crowd is hyped for one of the state’s fiercest and storied rivalries. (It wouldn’t be lit for another six or seven years.)
Bowling Green takes the field. First year coach Dave Clawson has the Falcons at 6-5, already bowl eligible. The Falcons have won three in a row. It’s almost two o’clock, lets go!!!
The game kicks off in front of 14,075 people.
Bowling Green strikes first with Willie Gater running for a short touchdown.
Soon later, Tyler Sheehan finds Freddie Barnes for another touchdown! Barnes is an outstanding receiver, you think he’s going to be in the NFL for sure.
Matt Norsic hits a 22 yard field goal to end the first quarter up 24-0. Your Falcons are going to rout UT! You starting chirping your friends on your Boost phone but realize that your Mom didn’t buy you more minutes.
What a pity.
Toledo shows life in the second with a David Pasquele touchdown run and right before the half DaJuane Collins adds a touchdown to go into the half down, 24-14. You are not worried, but you do find out that the concession stand at Doyt Perry Stadium is out of hot chocolate and hot dog buns. Also a bit of a pity.
But nothing can dampen your spirits, BG’s got it in the bag.
The third quarter is a back and forth battle until Alex Steigerwald hits a 26 yard field goal for Toledo to make it 24-17. Uh oh. The fourth quarter kicks off.
This is stressful but when you played the game out on EA Sports NCAA Football 2010, you had won as BGSU so that means something, right? Right...?
Eric Page gets his 7th reception and is up to 130 yards. You see DaJuane Collins power it in for a four yard touchdown, and the extra point ties it at 24 all.
You hate Toledo, you are angry and scared. Your program has won more of these meetings all-time, you tell the nearby UT fans.
Finally, after 24 unanswered points, your prayers won’t go unanswered as Tyler Sheehan connects with the great Freddie Barnes for a 17 yard touchdown.
But with 9:07 to play there is still plenty of time for Toledo to answer.
Thankfully, the defense stands tall. You cant believe the UT has had five turnovers! With a minute twenty seven to play Willie Geter gets-er-done with another touchdown run. The Falcons win the Peace Pipe 38-24 to prevent Toledo from going bowling, and attain bowl eligbility for themselves!
You vow to talk trash to any Toledo fan every day for the next year.
Surely there will be no bad karma associated with such gloating…
The day is November 27th, 2009, and for the next 3,606 days, BG will not feel that joy of lifting the trophy against their hated rival Toledo.
Can they do snap the streak on Day 3,607, on the 100th anniversary game, on their home turf under a new first-year head coach?
Well, we’ll just have to wait and see, won’t we?