Born Buckeye is one fan’s dream yet fulfilled. It started back in 2006 as an idea to combine custom graphic design with a unique name. Basically to add some style to Buckeye gear with a name that says more “I am a Buckeye fan” – I am Born Buckeye – it is part of my culture and intertwined with my life. Being a Buckeye fan is something that you can arrive at many ways – being born in Ohio, family attended tOSU, maybe as an alumni yourself – but the point is that as Born Buckeye it is a deep personal connection. Yes – it means you are disappointed and upset over a loss and it may be something that others view as trivial but you don’t care. You are Born Buckeye and no matter where you are at on fall Saturdays when you hear the Buckeye Battle Cry and Le Regiment you can feel in your bones the Shoe rumble.
The idea got traction and got me fired up enough to start a company, trademark the name, print up shirts and try to get tOSU to license my trademark. They didn’t because they said that the fact the shirts are printed on hemp was the wrong message (even though there are other hemp products they license) and that the design was too “gothic” (funny how Buckeye Corner now carries similar shirts). Not that I am bitter, just saying. Whatever – I paid them no mind and started selling shirts.
Then came the debacle in the desert at the hands of the Gators in football, then the repeat performance with hoops team……it dealt a blow the selling of Buckeye gear to be sure. Not saying that the Buckeye Nation deserted their team but for sure not everyone was interested in buying a new Buckeye shirt.
The following year in 2007 I decided to take Born Buckeye in a new direction, in addition to the shirts I thought it would be cool to set it up as a community site…ala a MySpace (sooo 2007) for Buckeye fans. I thought it was a great idea and so did people that I talked to – but in the end it was hard to compete with the likes of MySpace and Facebook, not to mention all the other Buckeye blogs and forum sites out there already with an established following – like Eleven Warriors and Buckeye Planet. After all – if there are not very many people – it isn’t that much of a community. The 2008 and 2009 seasons basically saw Born Buckeye evolve into my solo blog to the world, or at least to my little sister who I am convinced is really the only one who reads my blogs. This could also be due to the platform it was built on (tech speak for website technology) did not allow just any public visitor to browse the site as it forced people to sign up and login – so if a person even wanted to read my blogs and did not want to sign in they were kept out. Sucks.
Later in the 2009 season I decided to migrate the site to a new platform using BuddyPress. The idea for Born Buckeye 2.0 was to combine both the community aspect and the blog aspect – combining the two things that I really like to spend time doing – communicating with and reading blogs about Buckeye sports. I can watch Sportscenter but honestly the articles on espn.com annoy me most of the time, I can say the same thing for Rivals.com and a lot of other “premium” sites out there (cough – Bucknuts – cough). But when it comes to some good writing I always can find it at places like ElevenWarriors, OurHonorDefend, Men of Scarlet and Gray, ClubTrillion, and other Ohio State blogs – which tells me one thing – fans can write about their teams. So this is the new and improved direction for Born Buckeye. It is what is to become the social blogosphere – a community where you can read other fans blogs and write your own without having to work at setting up your own blog. I honestly believe that every Buckeye fan has a good blog in them. I say good blog because a drunken rant of four sentences detailing how much a player or coach sucks using all caps is not a blog and will be deleted. But if you want to put some decent thoughts into words then constructive criticism is just fine. I may live my life through Scarlet colored glasses but have no problem with fans calling out players or coaches as long as it is done with intelligence. This goes for any trolls reading this too – bring some brains and talk smack if you want. But understand that this does have a true Buckeye fan as an admin and posts, accounts can be deleted.
So that is the story of where Born Buckeye came from and how it has become the site you see today. In my dreams it becomes a place where Buckeye fans come to blog and discuss each other’s blogs, comment, vent, rant, rave, etc… and of course buy a Born Buckeye T-Shirt or hat.