Hello BuckeyeGrove.com members and Buckeye Fans!
I am new to the Buckeye Grove, but certainly not new to Ohio State, Big Ten or college football. I had the privilege to play football at Ohio State from 1978 to 1980, before a severe knee injury cut my career short. I was recruited and played my freshman year for Woody Hayes and was honored to play two years for Earle Bruce, earning the starting left tackle spot, before blowing out my left knee.
I was also privileged to play on teams with great assistant coaches, who went on to become some of the greatest coaches in the game; coaches like Nick Saban (now of Alabama), Pete Carroll (USC and Seattle Seahawks), Glen Mason (Kansas and University of Minnesota) and Alex Gibbs (Denver Broncos and Atlanta Falcons).
I then graduated in 1984, with my Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism in 1984 from The Ohio State University.
I come from a Big Ten background growing up in Illinois, my uncle Norris Ace, and cousin, Dave Levenick, both played for the Wisconsin Badgers; my uncle playing running back behind Heisman trophy winner, Alan Ameche and Cousin Dave being All-Big Ten and MVP for the Badgers. My older brother, Stu Levenick, was captain of the team, MVP and an All-Big Ten right tackle for the Fighting Illini. There have been a lot of great memories, great players, blood, sweat, tears and yes, cheers and stadium roars as well! O-H-I-O!
What does this mean to you as BuckeyeGrovers? Well, I will be contributing with a column called "Time and Change." Familiar title? I hope so! Ohio State has one of the very best if not the best storied history and tradition in college football. Those stories and traditions have been tested over the years, but we've maintained and actually grown our place at the top. It has not been easy and certainly will not be easy going forward. Changes in academic requirements, practice hours, recruiting rules, social media, texting, technology and media in general have changed the playing field. There are other changes in social responsibility, rules of the game, style of play, size, speed, athleticism and many more.
I plan to write on aspects of the game, the college football environment, inside the locker room, behind the scenes, comparing stories and facts from the past and how they relate to today. Many Buckeye fans expectations have never wavered, but sometimes the understanding of what it takes to deliver on those expectations has not grown with the times.
That is what Time and Change will be all about. I plan to write about things varying from Friday and Saturday game preparation, changes in offensive line play and technique, recruiting, game day environment and yes, maybe even some commentary on the Penn State controversy and how there are similarities between what occurred with Joe Paterno and our beloved Woody. So, sit back in your chair, take a read and enjoy some good stuff about our Buckeyes and the Big Ten. I bleed Scarlet and Gray and look forward to a great 2012 season with you!