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I know most people refer to the '98 team as being the most talented buckeye team of the 90's, but I personally think the '96 team was better. What really chaps me about that season is that UF got the MNC that year (and the gator fans down here always talk about that season) after getting to avenge a loss at the end of their season against the same team, whereas we didn't get that same chance and ended up being #2 again...
I put the "slip" in 96 as #1 because I was there at the stadium. Everyone was quiet for a minute of two after the final seconds ticked off, then everyone started chucking stuff on the field. scUM St. was bad, but it didn't have the same level of pure disgust w/ Cooper attached to it in my mind.
If you were around to experience the '69 Michigan loss it is tough to vote for anything else.
In '98 we had a chance to prove we were the best in the country. In '69 we were already overwhelmingly considered the best in the country. Having it put to you by Michigan hurts much worse than any other team.
If you were born long enough ago you might understand why I chose the 1976 UCLA Rose Bowl loss. I know the MSU loss stung because that was a team that had all the talent and it looked like finally the Buckeyes would be National champs again.
The UCLA loss though was after the blown 1969 season ending season loss to scum , the 74 loss to MSU, the loss in the 70 Rose Bowl to Stanford, the great 4 straight Rose Bowl run and no NC to show for it. The Buckeyes looked like they were finally going to do it. The Buckeyes had previously beaten UCLA during the regular season 40 -21 and after all the recent near misees it looked like the Buckeyes would finally have another NC. And then to lose to UCLA like they did was quite a blow. I think it really is what helped drive Woody over the edge in a way.
I haven't been around all that long, but the 96 scUM loss was the worst for me. 98 Mich. St. loss was also bad, but the 96 loss was just pure misery. Springs slipping to give up the games only TD, along with Cooper only calling 3 offensive plays, over and over, all day, was worse than torture.
I understand the 76 choice, but I voted for 1998, because of the overall collapse, the chickenshit coaching (running, what was it, I forget, a whole bunch of times in a row) and the sizeable lead we had at home in the second half, to a very, VERY subpar team. There is no way we ever lose that game again if it is played 1,000 times, IMO. I can't say that about the others. That one just hurts...period.