COLUMBUS, Ohio The 2009 season will officially get underway for the Ohio State rowing team this weekend when it travels to Redwood City, Calif., for the Pac-10 Challenge Presented by Windermere Saturday and Sunday.

Ohio State’s First Varsity Eight earned a No. 12 preseason ranking (221 points) in the USRowing/CRCA poll released March 12. The only other Big Ten Conference program to receive a higher ranking was Michigan State, which is seventh with 327 points.

Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota are the remaining Big Ten programs to crack the Top 20 with 14th, 15th and 19th-place standings, respectively.

USRowing/CRCA Women’s NCAA Division I Varsity Eight Rankings
March 12, 2009
Team (1st-Place Votes) Points
1. Yale (22)  494
2. Brown (1)  425
3. Washington  420
4. Stanford (2)  413
5. California  400
6. Virginia  366
7. Michigan State  327
8. Princeton  321
9. Harvard  314
10. Southern California 280
11. Washington State 255
12. Ohio State  221
13. Clemson  201
14. Wisconsin  174
15. Michigan  165
16. Tennessee  98
17. Boston  93
18. Oregon State  70
19. Minnesota  66
20. Louisville  30
Receiving Votes: Pennsylvania 29, Northeastern 28, Notre Dame 24, Syracuse 14, UCLA 12, Dartmouth College 6, Bucknell  2, Iowa 1, and St. Mary’s College of California 1

The calendar says it is spring and it certainly will feel like it when the Buckeyes compete this weekend in Redwood City, Calif. On the first day of competition Saturday, it will be 70 degrees and sunny with no chance of rain. The following day, the Buckeyes will compete in partly cloudy conditions in a comfortable 68 degrees.

In the 13 seasons as head coach of the Buckeyes, Andy Teitelbaum has led the First Varsity Eight to a 421-164 (.720) mark. In fact, all six competition boats at Ohio State have an over-500 record under Teitelbaum’s tutelage.

Boat Records under head coach Andy Teitelbaum (13 seasons)
First Varsity Eight: 421-164 (.720)
Second Varsity Eight: 348-134: (.722)
First Varsity Four: 314-180 (.636)
Second Varsity Four: 131-52 (.716)
First Novice Eight: 230-143 (.617)
Second Novice Eight: 106-75 (.586)

Alli Kehlet  joined the Buckeye coaching staff as a graduate assistant following four years as a varsity rower at George Mason. In 2007, Kehlet, a member of the First Varsity Eight, was instrumental in helping George Mason win the Colonial Athletic Association Team Points Cup. It was the first Cup won by the Patriots in program history. The team captain the following season, Kehlet and George Mason answered 2007 with an even more extraordinary 2008 season, winning the CAA Team Points Cup for a second-consecutive year. The 1V8 also won the Kerr Cup at the CAA Kerr Cup championships for the first time in school history. Kehlet graduated with a bachelor’s degree in health fitness and recreation resources with a concentration in exercise science in 2007. She is currently working on her master’s degree in sports management.  

The Buckeyes are not the only Big Ten school in action this weekend. Six other fellow conference programs are competing in various events around the country.

March 28
Event Location  Time
Indiana vs. Buffalo, Eastern Michigan  Bloomington, Ind. All Day
Iowa vs. Minnesota & Creighton Iowa City, Iowa All Day
Michigan State vs. Notre Dame East Lansing, Mich. All Day
Michigan at Princeton, Brown Princeton, N.J. All Day

March 29
Indiana Invitational (vs. Notre Dame, Purdue) Indianapolis, Ind. All Day

During the offseason, members of the rowing team expressed their various reasons for attending Ohio State, as well as their favorite thing about the university that encourages everyone to “Do Something Great.” Check back to during the season to read about some of your favorite Buckeyes’ favorite things about The Ohio State University.

My Favorite Thing About Ohio State is…
“I love the campus. There are a ton of areas to study, from the great libraries to the campus oval where you can study while working on your spandex tan!”
-Junior Tess Prescott

The Best Thing About Being a Buckeye is…
“The support we get from the university, staff and from our teammates.”
-Junior Sara Reardon

Ohio State will serve as hosts of the 10th-annual Big Ten Conference Rowing Championships May 2. The event will take place at Griggs Reservoir on the Scioto River. This is the second time in program history the Buckeyes have hosted the event which began in 2000.

Ohio State last hosted the conference championships in 2003. It was a close affair with Michigan and Michigan State finishing with an even 123 points apiece. However, Michigan was crowned the champion based on its First Varsity Eight finishing higher.

2003 Big Ten Championships
Columbus, Ohio
Griggs Reservoir
Scioto River

Overall Team Finishes
1. Michigan^ 123
2. Michigan State^ 123
3. Ohio State 107
4. Iowa 99
5. Wisconsin 69
6. Minnesota 61
7. Indiana 30

The Scarlet and Gray have won the coveted championship on two occasions 2002 and 2006. In 2002, the Buckeyes won by a then-record 14 points (138) over second-place finisher Michigan in East Lansing, Mich.

In 2006, the Buckeyes amassed 130 points, which outdistanced host Minnesota by nine points.  

2002 Big Ten Championships
East Lansing, Mich.
1. Ohio State 138
2. Michigan 124
3. Michigan State 109
4. Wisconsin 80
5. Minnesota 78
6. Iowa 60
7. Indiana 23

2006 Big Ten Championships
St. Paul, Minn.
1. Ohio State 130
2. Minnesota 121
3. Michigan State 113
4. Michigan 112
5. Wisconsin 88
6. Iowa 45
7. Indiana 34

The 2009 Buckeyes will certainly attempt to take advantage of having “home course advantage” as they will compete at Griggs Reservoir on the Scioto River during four different regattas this season. Among the four home events is the 2009 Big Ten Championships. After having hosted three events in back-to-back weekends, the Scarlet and Gray will hope to have adjusted to the waters.

This weekend, the Buckeyes will make their annual trip out West for the Pac-10 Challenge Presented by Windermere. Following the two-day event in Redwood City Calif., Ohio State will head to the opposite coast April 4 for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge hosted by Virginia in Charlottesville.

Beginning April 11, Ohio State will get further acquainted with its home waters when it hosts conference opponent Indiana, as well as Notre Dame and Brown.

The next weekend, the Scarlet and Gray will welcome Oregon State and Washington State April 18 and Bucknell April 19.

Two weeks later (May 2), the Buckeyes will host the Big Ten championships. They will welcome the six other conference squads Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota and Wisconsin to Columbus for the 10th-annual event.

The postseason continues with the Central/South Region Sprints May 16-17 in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Ohio State will seek its sixth regional title in seven years in 2009.

The Buckeyes then will look to be one of 12 teams invited to the NCAA championships May 29-31 in Camden, N.J.

The Buckeyes will head back out on the road, this time to the East Coast where they will compete in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge April 4 in Charlottesville, Va. The Virginia Cavaliers will serve as the event’s host.