The hype behind the 113th meeting between Ohio State and Michigan is at a whole new level. With all of that excitement, it is only fitting for ESPN’s College GameDay to help make Columbus, Ohio the center of the college football world for the weekend.
The show started at 7 a.m. Saturday morning, with fans flocking to the front of the RPAC to see one of the top college football shows in the country. The GameDay crew, according to analyst and Michigan alumni Desmond Howard, is working overtime and for good reason.
“We have a five hour show,” Howard said. “Wow, this game is huge.”
This game is not only huge for the players and the fans, but the analysts as well. Former OSU quarterback Kirk Herbstreit is doing double duty on Saturday with both GameDay and color commentary for The Game at noon. According to him, though, he would not have it any other way.
“It’s unbelievable to have a chance to come back, and I’ve called a few of them,” Herbstreit said. “I could call another one and another one and it never gets old. I get the chance to call the National Championship later this year, but nothing will compare to this for me. This is what it’s all about.”
With all of the hype behind this game, both Herbstreit and Howard have a unique perspective, having first-hand experience in this rivalry. The former Buckeye quarterback can relate more with the players from Ann Arbor and the position they are in coming into this game.
“Some of those guys at Michigan right now that are getting ready to get to their hotel, they have never beaten Ohio State,” Herbstreit said. “This is their last chance to try and best Ohio State. I have that perspective from the other side. I know what it feels like to go to bed never beaten Michigan.”
Even though this game may feel like a preview for what the College Football Playoff might bring, Howard said this game means much more to the players than what may come out of it.
“It’s not even about two versus three to the players. Those numbers, I think really, are irrelevant,” Howard said. “It’s just Michigan-Ohio State.”