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Just when you think THE™ Ohio State University can’t get any more smug or vile than it already is, THE™ university goes and does something like this:

Ohio State University won a yearslong legal battle for “THE” on Tuesday, gaining trademark protection for a three-letter article that plays an outsize role in school identity.

Surely to the sighs and eye rolls of other Big Ten rivals, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office approved OSU’s application for “THE,” specifically for use on branded products like T-shirts and caps that only feature the single word.

“THE has been a rallying cry in the Ohio State community for many years, and Buckeye fans who purchase official Ohio State gear support student scholarships, libraries and other university initiatives,” Ben Johnson, OSU’s senior director of media and public relations, said in a statement Wednesday.

Imagine being so pretentious as to trademark THE™ English language’s definite article.

What’s next? Are THE™ prepositions and qualifiers safe? Will there be a trademark on gerunds?

Heck, OSU will probably trademark your wife and kids’ names and make you pay them a royalty every time you say them.

If you think I’m being hyperbolic, you don’t know OSU. Savages, THE™ lot of them.

They’re named after a freaking nut that looks like THE™ eye of a deer, and their mascot is named “Brutus,” THE™ second most infamous traitor after Judas Iscariot.

To the annoyance of Buckeyes rivals, school alums regularly announce themselves to be graduates of “THE Ohio State University.”

Oh, we know, NBC. You don’t need to point out their haughtiness and poor grammar skills. We already know.

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