It's geographic. And the fact that Toledo straddles a unique area derived from a battle that could be considered historic — though we're talking about textbooks, not record books.
Michigan and Ohio have been drawing lines long before a football was being lobbed between "that team up north" and "Ohio."
Michigan faced Ohio State in football for the first time in 1897, a little more than 60 years after "The Toledo War." Michigan and Ohio didn't go head-to-head over football. They squabbled over piece of land that stretched from Toledo to the Indiana border.
Michigan wanted statehood. And it wanted Toledo, specifically for its access to Lake Erie.
No blood was shed in this battle. Instead, an act of Congress awarded Toledo and that parcel of land to Ohio.
Michigan got the upper peninsula as a consolation prize.
But the animosity endures, especially in the form of football. In this neck of the woods, you pick sides.
But consider this: If it wasn't for this war over a small parcel of land, the bulk of our readers would be living in Michigan. Though I'm sure that with all things in love, war, and football, they'd still be picking sides.
For all things UM athletics, follow Rachel's blog, In the House.