Brian Haines did his best to make it hospitable.
The Ohio tight ends coach cleaned up his office before Saturday’s 42-30 victory over Kansas. Yes, the pink stick-it note from his daughter remained posted on the wall — “I love you” it read — but folders that included call logs and film evaluation were neatly stacked into a file on the corner of his desk.
There was good reason for this. Room W503 that towers over Peden Stadium doubles as the visiting radio booth, and though members of KU’s broadcast team were a bit crammed, they did their best to not disturb Haines’ space.
It was only one example of the disparity between the two programs — at least when it comes to resources off the field.
While KU football completed a $2 million locker-room renovation last year — including a new recruiting lounge with popcorn machine — Ohio’s recruiting lounge literally is the press box, a 40-by-15-foot room with temporary seating for a second row. As KU athletic director Sheahon Zenger prepares to release official plans for a $300 million Memorial Stadium renovation project, Ohio stuffs a full uniformed football player mannequin in a narrow hallway between two offices, likely because there’s no room for it anywhere else.
The disadvantages of being a Mid-American Conference school are stark and obvious. Yet, none of that would have been evident by watching what happened on the field Saturday, as Ohio looked like the team with the better facilities and recruiting advantages as it controlled its Big 12 foe from the start.