10 things to know about the Ducks and Buckeyes
The University of Oregon and The Ohio State University* are squaring off in the first National Collegiate Athletic Association-sanctioned Football Bowl Subdivision championship, airing at 5:30 tonight on ESPN from Arlington, Texas. Here are some tidbits about Oregon and Ohio State and their sports histories:
1. Oregon played in, and won, the first NCAA men's basketball championship in 1939, beating — you guessed it — Ohio State.
2. The Ducks, first known as the Webfoots, have played football since 1893. The Ohio State Buckeyes have hit the gridiron annually since 1890.
3. In the early 1920s, Oregon began bringing a live duck on a leash as a mascot to games before adopting the Donald Duck-lookalike with Walt Disney's blessing in 1947. Ohio State's mascot, a Buckeye, is a nut that has appeared at football games leashless.
4. Ohio State's enrollment in 2013 was 57,466, making it one of the largest schools in the country. Oregon's 2013 enrollment was 24,548.
5. Oregon won the PAC-12, a conference with 12 members. Ohio State won the Big 10, which has 14 members.
6. Oregon has never beaten Ohio State in football. The most recent of Oregon's eight losses came in the 2010 Rose Bowl, a 26-17 Buckeye victory.
7. Both teams have contracts with Nike, which designed the championship game uniforms.
8. While both teams' rosters are dominated by out-of-staters, their coaches are home-schooled. Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich hails from Coos Bay and played college football at Southern Oregon University, this year's NAIA national champion. Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer grew up in Ashtabula, Ohio, and played college football at the University of Cincinnati.
9. Oregon's football team has had a winning record annually since 2004. Ohio State's last losing season was 2011.
10. The University of Oregon was the backdrop for the 1978 hit film "Animal House." Last spring, crews on the Ohio State campus filmed parts of "The Tank," a yet-to-be released movie about a crew isolated in an environment to simulate a trip to Mars.
*In its formal name, the university capitalizes "The." Go figure.