2020 Fiesta Bowl 

Victoria Poitras, Staff Writer

Ohio State University has always had a whole lot of loyalty when it comes to their beloved football team. Some people may even say that it is the pride and joy of Ohio State. However, like loyalties are built they can also be damaged. 

Back in 2016 Ohio State faced a devastating loss against Clemson with a final score of 60-0. While there were chances for Ohio State to score with field goals, and getting the ball in the endzone for a potential touchdown, no scoring arose from that game. Ohio State fans felt let down; there was no fight, just plain destruction. 

Since that devastating loss, a lot has changed. Seniors have left and replacements have come in. Ohio State won the National Championship in 2015 when they peaked. They had a chance at it again with the Fiesta Bowl in 2016 where they lost; however, hope sprung with the board showing Ohio State would play Clemson at the exact same place and bowl. There was hope for Ohio State to redeem its place as the best. Ohio State loss to Clemson 60-0.  Most people can agree that at such a big bowl there should of been at least a fight to watch and not complete demolition. 

How outside viewers feel about the subject usually varies and contradicts what the board says. Sophomore Kyree Shenfield comments on Ohio States’ past game with Ohio State: “Clemson definitely played better, but Ohio State has pressure on them too, the Fiesta Bowl is a big game.” Like most people, Shenfield can agree a loss of 60-0 is going to stick with the fans and in the memories of viewers. Ohio State may have had issues in the past but they now have the opportunity for redemption.

Most noticeably, Ryan Day is the new head coach who took the place of the legendary Urban Meyer who coached there for 18 years. He has led off with an undefeated season. Maybe this change is the reason Ohio State is keeping hope for the fans that await this new game. Freshman Mark Longo comments, “I think Ryan Day has definitely had a positive influence on them.” Being a college football watcher himself, Longo sees the improvement in the game that Ohio State is showing in their playing methods and in their new coach is teaching them. Both Shenfield and Longo agree that Ohio State has one of the best defenses in the country which will be a huge advantage at the fiesta bowl. While Ohio State does show promise they cannot underestimate what Clemson also has to offer.

Trevor Lawrence is the starting quarterback for Clemson. His fans have not been disappointed by his amazing performance because of the Buckeyes are undefeated. Shienfield comments on this legendary quarterback saying, “I think Trevor Lawrence is the best quarterback in the country. He has the better arm, but Justin Fields is also good.” Clemson definitely does have the upper hand in a crucial part of their operation. The teamwork that comes along with him will also be how the game will end.

Part of analyzing who will be victorious comes from the schedules both teams are put through. Ohio State played Florida Atlantic, Cincinnati, Indiana, Miami (Ohio), Nebraska, Michigan St. (25), Northwestern, Wisconsin, Maryland, Rutgers, Penn State (8), Michigan (13) and Wisconsin again (8), and Clemson played Georgia Tech, Texas A&M, Syracuse, Charlotte, North Carolina, Florida State, Louisville, Boston College, Wofford, NC State, Wake Forest, South Carolina, and Virginia. Sophomore Jiang Hao, says, “Clemson had the harder schedule because they played more vicious teams.” Shenfield also agrees with him saying, “Clemson was in the harder conference.” Depending on how each team performed in their schedules, and the energy they will bring to the Fiesta bowl will determine the winner. 

Analysis on the better offense and defense is also what is going to fuel the decision of Ohio State Clemson. Ohio State has always had the strongest defense in the country; it is what they are known for. Clemson is known for their great quarterback and polished style of playing. Most of the board agrees that Ohio State has the better defense but with Trevor Lawrence on Clemson’s side, who has the better offense has been debated. Shenfield believes, however, Ohio State has the better offense because they have a gifted runner that is able to move the ball with wonders. However, there is no getting past Trevor Lawrence, because Longo believes that Clemson has the better offense. It is a tough call but the board did eventually make decisions. 

Most of the board believes that Ohio State will not go on to win the Fiesta Bowl. However, Shenfield and Hao both believe that Ohio State will win. On the contrary, Longo believes that Clemson will win. Despite the thoughts of many, Ohio State fans go into the Fiesta Bowl with passion, loyalty, and excitement for their team. The Buckeyes fought hard, in the end the game ended with a score of 29-23 Clemson. However, the loyalty of the Buckeye Nation has not damaged out of this once again loss. Instead, there was more hope, Ohio State showed the world the fight they were willing to fight that fateful day. 

Champions of the Fiesta Bowl, Clemson went on to play Louisiana State University. LSU was number one when they played Oklahoma and won 63-28. LSU was not to be joked about, as they played fiercely the entire season and the tensions were high at this final game. Both Clemson and LSU took big risks that night for the title of National Champions. The risks ending up working is LSU’s favor when they won 42-25. Both Clemson and Ohio State suffered losses; however, they play is how they will be remembered by what truly matters, their fans. Their fans will only remember the hard work that they put into the game that meant so much to the team and them.