Buckeyes Receive 12-0 Championship Rings
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — If Urban Meyer was ever worried about a program-wide epidemic stemming from the infractions that led to Ohio State’s postseason ban, he probably wouldn’t have done what he did on Thursday.
The Ohio State football staff handed out championship hardware, including the traditional gold pants medallions for winning last year’s rivalry game against the Michigan Wolverines.
They also handed out rings.
“Days Like Today Show Us Why Being a Buckeye is Different From Anywhere Else in the Country,” OSU receivers coach Zach Smith wrote on his personal Twitter account.
Last year's Buckeyes got both rings and gold pants.
The Buckeyes didn’t win the national championship last season. They didn’t even win a Big Ten championship. Because Ohio State was ineligible for the postseason, Meyer’s first team could not even play for those championships last season.
What they did do was win the Big Ten Leaders Division championship on their way to an undefeated 12-0 season in 2012. Meyer rewarded that effort, mostly from players who were not involved in the scandal that led to the school’s NCAA-imposed sanctions, with a rather gaudy-looking championship ring.
“The players won the Leaders division championship of the Big Ten, so they're going to get rings,” Meyer said during an appearance on SiriusXM College Sports Nation following the 12-0 season.
“We did a little pep rally after the season. I'm going to make sure we're going to raise a banner in the indoor facility right next to all the national championship banners. We're going to do quite a few things to commemorate the season.”
Meyer said the rings were selected by a pair of seniors from the 2012 Ohio State defense. He initially instructed Etienne Sabino and Travis Howard, two guys who played high school football together down in Miami, Fla., to keep the design simplistic in nature.
He didn’t want things to get out of hand with these Leaders Division rings, but Sabino and Howard returned with what we see here. After everything the senior class had been through, which included the resignation of beloved head coach Jim Tressel, and a miserable 6-7 season to follow, Meyer decided to let them have whatever look they wanted.
One of these Leaders Division championship rings was auctioned off during the Buckeye Cruise for Cancer back in February. It went for $17 thousand, with a little help from Urban Meyer and his wife Shelley.
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