Schools Brace for Biggest Game of the Year

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Tickets to the football game with the highest stakes this season are selling for up to $1,500. High school games are being moved to avoid conflicts Saturday. University officials are encouraging fans to behave.

It's Michigan-Ohio State week, and the frenzy is fueled by what's on the line between the No. 1 Buckeyes and the No. 2 Wolverines: the Big Ten title, a trip to the national championship and bragging rights in one of college football's biggest rivalries.

"This is probably the biggest game that's ever come to Columbus," said Tony Mollica, general manager of the Varsity Club, a restaurant and bar about 500 yards from Ohio Stadium that expects its best business ever this weekend.

Ryan Forgacs, the owner of Main Event Ticket Service, said game tickets are fetching $550 to $1,500, higher prices than he's seen for a Michigan-Ohio State game in the company's eight years.

Tickets are more expensive than ones for the national championship game the Buckeyes won in 2002, Forgacs said.

High school football playoff games scheduled for Saturday evening have been moved to earlier in the day or to Friday. The Ohio High School Athletic Association worried it would not be able to get as many fans or enough stadium workers if the playoffs overlapped with the afternoon Ohio State-Michigan game, assistant commissioner Bob Goldring said.

Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman and university officials were to announce new sportsmanship initiatives at a press conference later Monday afternoon.