Ohio State athletic director gets into argument with Michigan staffer on sideline


A rough day for the Ohio State Buckeyes on the field was even tenuous on the sidelines.

Athletic director Gene Smith got into an argument with a member of Michigan sideline security during the Buckeyes’ loss Saturday.

In an interaction recorded by OutKick’s Trey Wallace, Smith was jawing at someone wearing a Michigan beanie after the Buckeyes scored a touchdown in the third quarter.

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Gene Smith

Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith Nov. 28, 2011, in Columbus, Ohio. (Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

According to Wallace, Smith “was standing near the end zone when a Michigan security official decided Smith wasn’t far enough behind the line.”

Smith then became “agitated,” saying he could “get the Big Ten in here to handle this.”

Michigan won a classic at The Big House, 30-24.

In a back-and-forth second half, the Wolverines got the stop they needed, intercepting Ohio State quarterback Kyle McCord in their own territory with 25 seconds left. 

Michigan fans storm field

Fans celebrate and rush the field after a game between the Michigan Wolverines and Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan Stadium Nov. 25, 2023, in Ann Arbor, Mich. Michigan won the game 30-24 to win the Big Ten East.  (Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images)

Blake Corum scored a pair of touchdowns, and Roman Wilson found the end zone for Michigan, which figures to climb to the No. 2 spot in the national rankings.

It was the third year in a row the Wolverines defeated their rival after losing eight straight.

Michigan now has a date with Iowa in the Big Ten championship next Saturday, and Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh will return from his suspension. Ohio State awaits its College Football Playoff fate.

j.j. McCarthy

J.J. McCarthy of the Michigan Wolverines speaks to the media after a game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan Stadium Nov. 25, 2023, in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Wolverines won the game 30-24 to win the Big Ten East.  (Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images)

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With a win next Saturday, Michigan will likely earn a third straight trip to the College Football Playoff after losing twice in the semifinals the last two years.

Fox News’ Joe Morgan contributed to this report.

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