Ohio State Football: Braxton Miller Is Not a Realistic Heisman Candidate

Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistNovember 2, 2012

STATE COLLEGE, PA - OCTOBER 27: Quarterback Braxton Miller #5 of the Ohio State Buckeyes celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Penn State Nittany Lions in the third quarter at Beaver Stadium on October 27, 2012 in State College, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Ohio State Buckeyes are having one of the best seasons of any ineligible bowl candidate ever. Yet on their bandwagon, you could hear a pin drop.

That’s because college football viewers and writers alike are treating the bowl-ineligible Buckeyes like ghosts.

In that case, might as well call Braxton Miller the Casper in the Heisman race.

Remember Casper the friendly ghost? The one caring and considerate creature associated will haunted houses and Patrick Swayze. That sure is scary.

Miller’s Heisman campaign is similar to the friendly ghost. Everybody has something nice to say about it, but Ohio State’s disclusion mars Miller’s season.

It’s a sad truth for Miller, who’s carried the Buckeyes offense all season and has redefined the dual-threat quarterback at OSU fresh off Terrelle Pryor’s tenure. Passing for 1,500 yards and rushing for another 1,000 doesn’t hurt, either.

I won’t ignore the calls for Miller in the Heisman top three:

JoeTessitore's Heismanology: 1-CollinKlein #KState 2-MantiTeo #NotreDame 3-BraxtonMiller #OhioState 4-AJMcCarron #Bama 5-JarvisJones #UGa

— ESPN CollegeFootball (@ESPNCFB) November 2, 2012

The buck stops there, though, for Miller. He only will get an invite to New York if the Buckeyes go undefeated. His stats are not gaudy enough to warrant an invite alone.

While he’s made his living on the ground, he’s merely the country’s 55th most efficient passer. For a quarterback, he certainly doesn’t fill up the passing category in the box score as many have before him.

Usually an undefeated season would be a tall order in the Big Ten. This isn’t your daddy’s Big Ten Conference, though. 

It may be the worst year for the conference in recent memory. Nebraska leads the Legends division, but they’ve scored fewer points than they’ve given up, Penn State had a handful of athletes transfer and they’re 5-3, while Northwestern has already made a bowl game.

It’s a weird year for Big Ten Football, one most teams would like to forget. That doesn’t help Ohio State’s opportunities for exposure. Winning the Big Ten while facing a soft non-conference schedule is closer to a Big East title equivalent this season, not like a Pac-12 title, even.

All of this negative perception does not favor Braxton Miller. It’s a tough job being the “Casper” of college football.