Saint Woody


Saint Woody

The History and Fanaticism of Ohio State Football

Bob Hunter

304 pages
30 photographs, index


September 2022


$24.95 Add to Cart

August 2012


$36.95 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)

September 2012


$24.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

The Ohio State Buckeyes have been a powerhouse in college football for decades, with numerous national championships and NFL draftees to their credit. With such a successful history, it’s no wonder that the passion for Ohio State football has reached a level of devotion that has religious overtones. Saint Woody is a Bill Bryson–style look at Ohio State football and the spiritual fanaticism that surrounds it. Bob Hunter tracks the development of this powerhouse program from its earliest days to its heights under Woody Hayes, the de facto king of Ohio State football, and beyond.

Hayes led the team to three national championships and a record of 205–61–10 over a twenty-eight-year period and was at the heart of the Ten-Year War, a particularly intense period in the infamous Ohio State–Michigan rivalry. Hunter also looks at the present state of Buckeye football and the team’s scarlet-and-gray-clad followers, as well as its legion of detractors, who voted Ohio State as the “most hated” college team in a nationwide survey. America loves—and hates—a winner. Irreverent, honest, insightful, and always entertaining, Saint Woody will appeal to anyone whose spirit has ever lifted when hearing that famous cry “Go Bucks!”

Author Bio

Bob Hunter is a retired sports columnist for the Columbus Dispatch. He is the coauthor of The Buckeyes: A Story of Ohio State Football and author of Chic: The Extraordinary Rise of Ohio State Football and the Tragic Schoolboy Athlete Who Made It Happen and Buckeye Basketball.


“Woody Hayes was bigger than life and remains so to many Ohio State fans. Bob Hunter, a perceptive and objective observer of the Buckeyes for more than three decades, also reveals the iconic coach, still revered a quarter century after his death, as so much more.”—Rusty Miller, retired Ohio sports editor, Associated Press

“A big part of college football is the lore, and few schools are richer in it than Ohio State. In Saint Woody, veteran Columbus sports columnist Bob Hunter details the sung and unsung men, games, and controversies that make Buckeyes football a magnificent obsession for millions. If you ever wondered if Woody really went for two against Michigan ‘because they wouldn't let me go for three’ or how snowy was the Snow Bowl, this is the book for you.”—Bill Livingston, sports columnist, Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Even the most expert of Buckeye fans will learn more about Ohio State football, Woody Hayes, and others connected to the great tradition than they knew before opening Bob’s book!”—Paul Keels, play-by-play announcer, Ohio State–IMG Radio Network

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Religion?
Chapter 2: Genesis
Chapter 3: The Martyr
Chapter 4: The Prophet
Chapter 5: The Messiah
Chapter 6: The Shrine
Chapter 7: The Graveyard
Chapter 8: The Wizard
Chapter 9: The Greatest Game Ever
Chapter 10: The Greatest Coach Ever?
Chapter 11: The Snowiest Game Ever
Chapter 12: The Trailblazer
Chapter 13: Saint Woody
Chapter 14: The Rivalry
Chapter 15: The Cogs
Chapter 16: The Hero
Chapter 17: Brother Earle
Chapter 18: The Season
Chapter 19: The Survivor
Chapter 20: Satans
Chapter 21: The Forgotten
Chapter 22: The Beloved
Chapter 23: Fallen Heroes
Chapter 24: The Benefactors
Chapter 25: The Rituals
Chapter 26: The Secret
Chapter 27: Gospel Writers
Chapter 28: A Season from God
Chapter 29: The Greatest Games
Chapter 30: Former Saint Tress
Chapter 31: The Flock

About the Author

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