Meyer and Hoke, a pair of Ohio natives, square off for first time in Michigan-Ohio State game

Urban Meyer has been away from the rivalry dubbed "The Game" for a long, long time.

He's glad to be back.

Now he's embracing his first Michigan-Ohio State game as a head coach.

Meyer, like Michigan's Brady Hoke, grew up in Ohio. Both were steeped in the legends and lore of Bo Schembechler and Woody Hayes, of playing for bragging rights in November and despising your rival the other 51 weeks of the year. He knows that winter seems colder and longer for the loser, while the winner's season is looked upon fondly no matter its record.

Meyer's first edition of the Buckeyes (11-0, 7-0 Big Ten) put perfection and a No. 4 national ranking on the line on Saturday against Hoke and the 20th-ranked Wolverines (8-3, 6-1).