Local Big 10 players are fired up and ready to start their long-delayed season on Oct. 23.
"It hasn't been easy for anybody, but just to be able to look these guys in the eye and let them know that they have an opportunity to play and that their fight, they have something to show for it now," said Ohio State head coach Ryan Day.
The Big 10 postponed football games on Aug. 11, citing too much uncertainty with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Elder head coach Doug Ramsey said the postponement was heartbreaking for his son Peyton, who transferred from Indiana to play quarterback at Northwestern this season.
"It was really hard to know that other people were allowed to, and you guys weren't doing anything different, but you're not allowed to," Ramsey said. "I think that was hard for a lot of the guys to accept."
Monica Johnson, mother of Ohio State freshman and Princeton grad Paris Johnson, said the decision became personal. Parents protested outside the Big 10 headquarters in late August, demanding answers for their sons.
When the Big 10 reversed its decision on Sept. 16, Johnson said her son was raring to hit the field.
"He said, 'Mom, I have not taken one day off, I am ready to go,'" Johnson said.