The Ohio State University Alumni Association

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Title conjures memories of lessons well learned

I was in the middle of my Army Basic Training, and our platoon was about to finish a three-mile run — in full gear and plenty tired. As we neared the finishing point at our barracks, a call came from the back: “Cut the corner.” It was immediately repeated by others, so the individual guiding the platoon steered it across the lot that remained instead of keeping to the street.

Our drill sergeant, who had been trailing the platoon (and wasn’t in full gear like we were), sprinted to the front, cursing us every step of the way. “I’ll teach you to cut corners,” he yelled. “We’ll do it again.” And with the entire platoon groaning inside and out, he led us on another three-mile run, cutting no corners this time.

When we finished — and everyone did — the sergeant said, “I’ll bet you didn’t think you could do it.” We began to realize that he hadn’t been punishing us. This ruse was part of the training program, and it was probably he who first shouted to cut the corner. He was teaching us that we were capable of doing much more than we thought possible, a good lesson for soldiers.

When the football team lost J.T. Barrett, already a substitute, in its last regular season game with the conference championship a week away and then beat Wisconsin 59­–0, I was reminded of that basic training experience. To help overcome the adversity, everyone — offense and defense — performed at a higher level, higher than before and probably higher than many thought possible. And those heightened performances carried forward through the next two games, earning a national championship.

Coach Urban Meyer didn’t just bring a team closer together; he made it realize its full potential, and that’s what made the difference.  

Edward A. Molnar ’70 MS, ’72 PhD (LM)
Alexandria, Virginia

Remembering past champs

Congratulations, Ohio State football team and coaches on your impressive win over Oregon to win the national championship.

In 1958, Ohio State also defeated Oregon to win the national championship. My wife and I were at that Rose Bowl game as students. Ohio State had three student trains going to the game. There were also alumni and band trains. This trip was a life-changing event for us.

If my memory is correct, the trip cost $220 for 10 days. It included six days on the train with meals, four nights at L.A. hotels, a new year’s dance, dancing with Lawrence Welk and busing to the Rose Bowl parade and game. I still have the ticket to the game, which cost $5.50.

The student trains stopped at Salt Lake City, San Francisco, down the coast of California, the Grand Canyon and for church at Wichita, Kansas.

This was life changing for us because most of us had not been to the West Coast, I met my wife-to-be on the train and I had the privilege of being on the committee at Ohio State that planned the trip. I learned what can be accomplished with good planning. This trip helped me develop self-confidence.

Rob ’60 and Ellie O’Leary Riber ’59 (LM)
Alfred Station, N.Y. 

Victory brings out the poet in this alum

I thought I’d offer my thoughts on the national championship in the form of a limerick.

There once was a team called the Bucks
Who were playing a team called the Ducks.
They were facing a team
That was chasing a dream
And believing Ohio State sucks.

It appeared early on Ducks were right.
They scored early, thought they’d own the night.
’Til Ezekiel’s wheels,
Cardale’s passes unreal,
Made the Ducks look like turkeys in flight.

So the final was 42-20.
Without turnovers there could be plenty
More scores, but so what?
We kicked Oregon’s butt.
Win another next year — up the ante!

Tom Montgomery, ’80 JD (LM)
Woodbridge, Virginia

Instant pick-me-up

To paraphrase Ishmael: Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul, I go to YouTube and bring up TBDBITL doing Script Ohio and my soul is rejuvenated at least for a while.

It is nice to have such a handy and non-prescription aid available. Thanks, Ohio State, for so much.

Warren K. Veith ’60

Readers share more views on redesign

I just tried to read the Jan–Feb issue of the alumni magazine. I struggled through Archie’s letter, then tried to read the letters, including your “From the Editor” comments.

I gave up just like I did with the Nov–Dec issue. I cannot see that you have improved the readability. Print still too small; print still too light! I also miss the alumni news; however, it does not matter what the content is if it is not readable. Despite the low number of responses, they may still be representative of all members. Please consider going back to the old format so those of us who are in our senior years can again enjoy the alumni magazine.

Joe McClanahan ’63, ’70 MS (LM)
St. Marys, Ohio

Words cannot express how much I love this online edition of the January-February issue of the alumni magazine. I feel lucky and privileged to be receiving it in my inbox. The graphics are so beautiful and so sharp on my iPad, it is a pleasure to read.

I have difficulty reading books and magazines because of my eyesight, and using an electronic tablet makes the print and the photos pop. I was able to read straight through all the information for the first time as it was so clear. I was so excited to get the online magazine that I forwarded it to three other OSU alumni — family members and a neighbor.

I savored reading the whole article about our Buckeyes’ national championship. It was like the games and the excitement were unfolding again before my eyes. This issue is a keeper! Thank you for going digital!

Dorothy Donahey ’72
Reston, Virginia

Bless you for standing firm on your decision to eliminate all the births, deaths and promotions from the magazine and making this information accessible online.

The magazine is now a publication that inspires pride in me as a grad. I can put this on the table in the hallway by my classroom at Edison Community College, where I put all my magazines once I’ve read them. It’s so interesting and attractive that it won’t be there long. And that’s a good thing.

Vivian Blevins ’76 PhD
Piqua, Ohio

I had an opportunity to take a look at the new Ohio State Alumni magazine and wanted to pass along that I really like the design. It feels very modern and certainly portrays momentum at a progressive university.

E. Gordon Gee, president emeritus
Morgantown, West Virginia