Griffin talks Buckeye football, praises Tressel at store openingWritten by Kristen Criswell | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Being a Buckeye means everything to Archie Griffin.
“I was born at the university hospital. Most days of my working life have been spent at Ohio State, either at the athletic department or alumni association,” Griffin said. “It’s been everything to me.”
The former OSU running back and the only two-time Heisman Trophy recipient visited Sylvania on Aug. 14 for the grand opening of the Buckeye Store & More to sign autographs and meet with fans.
Griffin, who is president of The Ohio State Alumni Association, was optimistic about the Buckeye’s upcoming season.
“I think they will have a great year. Ohio State has a good team, we really do,” he said. “If we can stay healthy and play up to our potential and play up to our ability, we have a chance of winning the Big Ten and then maybe even playing in a national championship.”
This season is extra special for Griffin because his son Adam Griffin committed to the Buckeyes football team in February.
“I feel pretty good about it. He’s always dreamed of playing for Ohio State and the opportunity has presented itself. I know he is looking forward to going out through the tunnel for the very first time, and I’m looking forward to a good four or five years,” he said.
During the past few football seasons, Florida’s Tim Tebow and Oklahoma’s Sam Bradford have had the chance to join Griffin as a two-time Heisman winner, but fell short. Alabama’s Mark Ingram has the chance this season to join Griffin.
Griffin said he’d like to see someone else win the Heisman a second time and thinks Ingram has a good chance.
“I’ve been saying for a very long time that somebody else will win it twice. I’ve always believed that if I could do it, I know somebody else out there can. It’d be terrific,” Griffin said. “I’d try to be the first one to congratulate the person that does.
“I really believe somebody will do it three times. Mark Ingram is one of those kids that has the chance, just like Tim Tebow had the chance. It’s not easy to do; obviously, a lot of things have to go right for you,” he said. “Ingram is in the position where he’s going to be on an outstanding football team this year, they’re rated No. 1 in the country right now. And that’s part of it — being on an outstanding team, being with a great group of guys that make you look good. He’s part of that. He has a real good chance.”
Griffin, who played under Woody Hayes from 1972 to 1975, said his late coach taught him the idea of paying it forward.
Griffin is active in numerous charities and scholarships, donating his time and money.
“I believe in helping young people … providing scholarships for young people is something that I try to do as much as I can. It’s one of the reasons I love working with the alumni association. We have alumni clubs around the country that are doing just that. Providing scholarships to kids in their areas is huge for Ohio State and certainly huge for those kids who are receiving the scholarships,” he said.
Griffin believes there is “no question” head coach Jim Tressel could have a legacy at OSU like Hayes. Tressel knows how to get his players fired up for a game and has done a wonderful job already, Griffin said.
Tressel has won one national championship, and Griffin thinks he’ll win at least one more in the future.
The Buckeye Store & More is located in the Starlight Plaza in Sylvania. The store offers collegiate apparel for OSU, Michigan, Michigan State, the University of Toledo, BGSU and Notre Dame.
“We basically want to be the destination store for college apparel in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan,” said owner Jim Damschroder.
The store had more than 15,000 people visit during the grand opening to see the store and meet Griffin, Damschroder said.
For more information about the store’s products, visit the website www.buckeyeblazer.com.