Big Ten Network analyst Gerry Dinardo watched one practice this year before mentioning Braxton Miller and the Heisman Trophy in the same sentence. Former Buckeye receiver Roy Hall on 10TV at least waited one game before making a similar pronouncement.
But are these analysts being ridiculously premature…or are they just ahead of the curve?
“Oh, gosh,” said Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer. “There will be no discussion of that. I think he’s one of those freaks of nature that has a lot of ability and great things can happen to him. But there won’t be billboards posted anywhere or anything like that.”
Miller’s teammates were, however, willing to tackle the topic.
“I think it’s early obviously, but with those kind of numbers it’s hard to imagine if he keeps producing like that, that he wouldn’t be a candidate for it,” said offensive lineman Reid Fragel.
“Oh, yeah, if he keeps having games [like he did against Miami],” added backup quarterback Kenny Guiton, “those stats could pile up.”
Miller’s stats (161 yards rushing, 207 passing and three touchdowns) also attracted the attention of CBS, which has now named Miller a dark horse candidate for the award.
“The sky is the limit for Miller in Urban Meyer’s scheme,” wrote Chris Huston.
But there will be no billboards, so whatever happens to Miller’s stats, expect Miller himself to stay grounded.
UPDATE: ESPN also includes Braxton Miller in their Big Ten Heisman watch.