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It’s official: Braxton Miller to miss 2014 season

Braxton Miller AP

O-H!  UH-OH!!!

Unfortunately for Ohio State and the fans of its football team, their worst fears have been realized as OSU announced today that, as widely expected, starting quarterback Braxton Miller will miss the entire 2014 season.  Miller, the two-time Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year reinjured his right(throwing) shoulder during practice Monday, with at least a couple of reports indicating that the he suffered a dislocated shoulder on a throw in which there was no contact.

“My thoughts and prayers are with Braxton and his family,” Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer said in a statement. “This is an unfortunate injury to a young man who means so much to this program and to Buckeye nation.”

Other than he reinjured the same shoulder, the school declined to acknowledge the specific nature of the injury. They did allow that it was a non-contact play and the injury will require surgery to repair.

There is not timetable as of yet for surgery or a return to football activities.

Former Ohio State All-American wide receiver Joey Galloway, who was at yesterday’s practice, “said the injury to Braxton occurred on a rollout throwing a short pass toward the sideline.”

“He didn’t even get hit,” a source told Pete Thamel of SI.com. “He threw and it’s just a freakish thing. Everyone is scratching their head on how it happened.” Thamel added that Miller suffered a torn labrum, not a dislocation of his shoulder.

The injury didn’t go unnoticed all across college football and by former teammates.  And Las Vegas.

There was some good news, at least for now, amidst the gloom as Miller revealed that he will return to the Buckeyes for the 2015 season.  Miller is a fourth-year senior and has yet to use a redshirt.

He’ll use one this year and then, if he does return — he could change his mind and enter the 2015 NFL draft — he’ll be a fifth-year senior who would be poised to again lead his beloved Buckeyes.

“I love Ohio State and Buckeye nation, and my goal is to come back from this injury stronger and better than ever,” said Miller, who is 26-8 as a starter, including 24-2 the past two seasons, in his statement. “I am on course to graduate in December and I want to attend graduate school, and then return to lead the Buckeyes next season. In the meantime, I want to give all the support I can to my coaches and teammates as they chase a championship this season.”

That’s the future, though. The present is what currently matters most to OSU.

JT Barrett

JT Barrett

With the end of Miller’s season officially finalized, the Buckeyes will turn to, at least initially, J.T. Barrett.  The redshirt freshman had been in a battle throughout spring practice and on into summer camp with sophomore Cardale Jones to be Miller’s backup, only just recently moving into the No. 2 spot on the depth chart.

Both Barrett and Jones received extensive work during the 15 spring sessions as Miller rehabbed the partially torn labrum he suffered in the Orange Bowl loss to Clemson, which was subsequently repaired in what at the time was described as minor surgery in late February.  That extra work for the two reserves continued into summer camp as Miller had been limited due to what was described as soreness in his shoulder.

While the pair have received additional reps because of Miller’s issues, it won’t help the game-day inexperience.  Barrett has never thrown a pass at the collegiate level, while Jones has thrown just two.

Despite the lack of on-field experience at this level, Barrett will enter the huddle with a fairly lofty recruiting pedigree and an assertive leadership style.

A four-star member of OSU’s 2013 recruiting class, Barrett was rated as the No. 7 dual-threat quarterback in the country.  Easily the biggest knock on Barrett is his arm strength, or lack thereof.  His offensive coordinator/position coach, however, says the former Texas high schooler more than makes up for lack of a cannon on his shoulder in other facets of the game.

“Extremely cerebral. Very magnetic leader,” Tom Herman said earlier this month of a player who’s turned out to be his new starting quarterback. “I think the kids kind of gravitate towards him.

“We’ve got to work on strengthening his arm. He’s a distant third in terms of Braxton and Cardale in terms of just rearing back and trying to throw it through a wall. But he makes up for it in his anticipation and his accuracy and all that. You don’t have to have a howitzer to be successful in college football. I’m very pleased with his continuing growth.”

Cardale Jones

Cardale Jones

Jones, a three-star member of the Buckeyes’ 2011 recruiting class who delayed his enrollment at OSU for prep school, was rated as the No. 12 pro-style quarterback in the country that year.  He took a redshirt as a true freshman, then played sparingly in 2013; in 39 plays from scrimmage last season, Jones threw the ball twice (completing one for three yards) and ran 17 times (for 128 yards and a touchdown).

Meyer didn’t address just who will start the opener against Navy, although it was noted in the release that “[i]t was previously announced by Meyer on Saturday that Barrett, a 6-1, 225-pounder from Wichita Falls, Texas, had moved ahead of Jones for the No. 2 quarterback spot.”  Recently, Barrett has taken the lion’s share of reps with the first-team offense as he separated himself from Jones.

Taking all of that into account, there’s no reason to tap dance around it — losing Miller for the year is a significant blow to the Buckeyes and will certainly have an impact on the Big Ten Race.  It also may very well significantly impact the first year of the College Football Playoff as the Buckeyes, despite the Big Ten title-game loss to Michigan State, were the overwhelming favorites to claim the conference and emerge as the league’s playoff representative.  Miller is one of the most irreplaceable and indispensable players in college football; some would even argue that he’s the most irreplaceable and indispensable, given the unproven running backs in OSU’s stable and the coaching staff having to replace four of its five starting offensive linemen.

Even as it may seem like it in the here and now, the season’s not completely lost for the Buckeyes.  As, just to name a few, Oregon’s Marcus Mariota, Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel,  Notre Dame’s Everett Golson and Florida State’s Jameis Winston have shown over the past couple of years, redshirt freshmen are perfectly capable of successfully leading their teams in their first seasons as starters.  One of those four (Winston) won a BCS title, while another (Golson) helped lead his team to the BCS title game.  Winston won the Heisman en route to the championship, while Manziel took home his while helping the Aggies win 11 games their first season in the SEC.  Mariota was first-team All-Pac-12 in 2012 as the Ducks won 11 games, including the Fiesta Bowl.

More than likely, the Ducks and Aggies would’ve qualified for the playoffs were that system around in 2012, the former in particular.

Then there’s this: USC’s Matt Leinart (2004), LSU’s Matt Flynn (2007) Alabama’s Greg McElroy (2009), Auburn’s Cam Newton (2010), Alabama’s AJ McCarron (2011) and Winston (2013) all won BCS titles in their first year as starters over the last decade.

Who knows, Barrett could make it three seasons in a row for the second-year freshman/first-year starter phenomenon that’s done nothing but grow over the past handful of years.  And, for now, that’s about all Buckeye Nation can hang their title hopes on.

Well, that and a schedule that features just one team at the moment ranked in the Top 25 — No. 8 Michigan State in East Lansing.  That’s easily OSU’s toughest road game of the year, with other games away from The Horseshoe consisting of against Navy (9-4 in 2013) (in Baltimore), Maryland (7-6), Penn State (7-5) and Minnesota (8-5).  Their home slate features matchups against Virginia Tech (8-5), Kent State (4-8), Cincinnati (9-4), Rutgers (6-7), Illinois (4-8), Indiana (5-7) and Michigan (7-6).

According to FBSchedules.com, Ohio State’s 2014 schedule is tied for fifth-toughest, with Oregon, among the teams currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 10.  The .569 winning percentage of its opponents top that of defending BCS champion Florida State (.550), Oklahoma (.477) and Alabama (.473).

In other words, it’s not the cakewalk some have perceived to be.  It’s not exactly a football death march either, which means that, depending on how fast Barrett — or Jones — get acclimated, all the gloom and doom currently hanging over the football program could give way to a postseason full of possibilities.  Or it’ll be 2011 all over again in terms of the won/loss ledger.  One of the two.

 

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56 Responses to “It’s official: Braxton Miller to miss 2014 season”
  1. thescorekeepers says: Aug 19, 2014 5:41 PM

    Reblogged this on The ScoreKeepers and commented:
    Tough blow for the Ohio St. Buckeyes

  2. JT says: Aug 19, 2014 5:43 PM

    Out for the season now, it’s on JT Barrett.. Get well Braxton

  3. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 19, 2014 5:45 PM

    If either one of these QBs can throw, they will be better than Braxton Miller. There is no passing threat with Miller at QB. that’s how Michigan State rolled them. Running QBs that are no threat to pass are easy to defend, because once you stop the run they are toast.

    Thats why Ohio State never beats anyone good. When your QB sucks, you will never beat the elite teams.

  4. canetic says: Aug 19, 2014 5:46 PM

    Karma always find you, Urban Meyer.

  5. burm61 says: Aug 19, 2014 5:47 PM

    VaTech will stomp OSU.

  6. iwishwvuwouldbeatbama says: Aug 19, 2014 5:55 PM

    As much as I do not like OSU, anyone who watches Big 10 ball knows they play good enough defense to finish near the top. No big deal here. The school will sit him for a year, get him some sweet tattoos and business as usual next year. Unless Urban has another heart attack and moves on to a better job.

  7. wvucolumbus says: Aug 19, 2014 6:08 PM

    “And emerge as the league’s playoff representative.” That was written as it’s a foregone conclusion that the B1G will have a member in the dance. I could argue that the B1G would be the conference to be left out. SEC, XII and PAC could easily join a FSU. Remember there are 5 power conferences now that FSU has its act together.

  8. jimmy53 says: Aug 19, 2014 6:13 PM

    I smell a fake “serious illness” coming on for Meyer…

    Truth be told, the OSU schedule is such a joke this might not hurt them except for in the MSU game…

  9. elwaysmilehighdenver says: Aug 19, 2014 6:15 PM

    Karma for showing up in my mailbox last week on the cover of Sports Illustrated!
    Signed, Michigan fan.

  10. wvucolumbus says: Aug 19, 2014 6:17 PM

    I also wouldn’t be surprised to see SEC get 2 teams in the tourney. I don’t think the participants are going to be based strictly on record (as in past years). I can see where decisions are based more on total resume (ie. a 2 loss team w great wins and tough, close losses trumps a 1-loss or even undefeated team w very weak OOC and conference games). It’s been stated that the committee prefers more of the resume angle vs champion of a conference. This makes even more sense when accounting for 5 conferences.

  11. planecrashguy says: Aug 19, 2014 6:24 PM

    Jimmy 53-

    Do not short change Navy as a season opening, road opponent for OSU. Navy is a veteran unit this year, and deeper than the usual academy teams. Five years ago the Mids opened the season at OSU and damn near beat them.

  12. johnelwayishorsefaced says: Aug 19, 2014 6:32 PM

    “The 2014 Big 10 champion Michigan State University Spartans”
    Get used to hearing that. It was pretty much a certainty before this injury now there’s no question whatsoever.

  13. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 19, 2014 6:36 PM

    Lol planecrashguy. I love it how all Suckeye State fans have Lou Holtz syndrome. They think all their opponents are so good and tough.

  14. watchfullhose says: Aug 19, 2014 6:39 PM

    What part of 5th toughest schedule can’t you understand, troll?

  15. wolfman55h says: Aug 19, 2014 6:45 PM

    Thee ohio state weren’t going to be in the playoff anyway. It’s the Big 10 for Christ sake.

  16. seasickcecil says: Aug 19, 2014 6:58 PM

    Phil Steele ranks Ohio States schedule as the 36 hardest: http://www.fbschedules.com/2014/08/phil-steele-2014-college-football-strength-of-schedule-rankings/

  17. jimmy53 says: Aug 19, 2014 7:02 PM

    planecrashguy–

    I appreciate the sentiment, but let’s be serious, if they can’t beat Navy then they won’t even be in the top 25.

  18. barkleyblows says: Aug 19, 2014 7:04 PM

    I think Clownsfan should worry about his D Bag butt buddy Johnny Ass Clown. Another season of QB greatness for the Clowns!!

  19. sportsfan18 says: Aug 19, 2014 7:38 PM

    Feel badly for the kid…

    Urban, someone needs to look into the training staff though.

    I”m NOT saying anything was done wrong but when things don’t work out, a review must take place is all.

    Just like if a team is losing at half-time in a game, they make adjustments.

    This kid had a partially torn labrum in their bowl game and then had surgery in Feb.

    He was obviously rehabbing and yet couldn’t throw due to pain.

    Then, just making a throw without being hit, he tears his labrum.

    Yes, everything could have been done correctly and it’s just a freak thing.

    But reviews are done and needed in a variety of settings.

    Did the kid work too hard? Did he do more than he was supposed to and not let others know?

    Again, not saying he did.

    Just find out though so the same thing doesn’t happen again after his upcoming surgery.

  20. aresarrow says: Aug 19, 2014 7:39 PM

    Jackass. If you’re going to write a story like this, with a kid missing the season, might be wise not to pile on.

  21. planecrashguy says: Aug 19, 2014 7:39 PM

    brownsmakemecrazy–

    Wow, did you ever dial a wrong number. If OSU was playing Islamic State, I’d might root for them. Otherwise, it would never happen, nor has it happened in the past.

    The option offense is the great equalizer. Playing against an option team, especially a disciplined service academy, is a nightmare in this day and age. Defensive staffs see the scheme so seldom it’s impossible to prepare for with one’s own scout team. Navy scared OSU in 2009, and damn near beat South Carolina at Columbia in 2011. Then there’s (then) 1-AA Ga Southern who beat Florida last year and had Ala on the ropes in 2011. GaSo ran for over 300 yds against Ala’s defense, and Saban had his first team in and threw for a TD with seconds left to make the final score look respectable.

  22. excessivedrinking says: Aug 19, 2014 8:07 PM

    Well, at least they have their perennially cake schedule.

  23. crazyfootballfun says: Aug 19, 2014 8:12 PM

    Feel bad for the kid—Duck fan here and was looking forward to a lively competition between Miller and Mariota. Wishing him healing and hoping he considers being a running back next time.

  24. pawloosa says: Aug 19, 2014 8:16 PM

    Yawn…
    Tough luck playa….
    Looking over OSU’s schedule…it’s a 1 maybe 2 game season so OSU should win 10 games regardless of who’s under center…Braxton might have been the difference maker in (1) additional win…IMO
    BIG 10 looks to be MAC prt2

  25. dkhhuey says: Aug 19, 2014 8:31 PM

    Get well Braxton and come back strong next year. It is time for the rest of the team to step up and take it upon themselves to ensure the loss of Miller isn’t a crushing blow. Our defensive production will be much improved with the addition of coaches Ash and Johnson and a more solidified/singular approach. The defensive line is going to be scary and the coverage more aggressive. The offense is packed with playmakers and Tom Hermann and Urban will adjust to JT’s skillset. It hurts a great deal to lose one of the most electrifying talents in the game – but the game goes on!

    The season just got tougher but it is not over of the goals of the Buckeyes!

  26. moondog440 says: Aug 19, 2014 8:37 PM

    Nobody should rejoice in a young man’s season ending injury. Ever. Best wishes from a Hawkeyes fan…

  27. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 19, 2014 8:39 PM

    FBS schedules website lost any credibility if they have Suckeye State as having the 5th toughest schedule.

    They must have a flawed computer model. Probably the same one the BCS used.

    Their schedule is horrible. I see the Suckeyes are also paying off websites now like they pay off voters and how they pay their players with cash stuffed envelopes

  28. seasickcecil says: Aug 19, 2014 8:56 PM

    Phil Steele has Ohio States schedule as the 36th hardest: http://www.fbschedules.com/2014/08/phil-steele-2014-college-football-strength-of-schedule-rankings/

  29. general74 says: Aug 19, 2014 9:12 PM

    Its great Braxton has decided to redshirt and come back next year but what if JT has a great year and leads Ohio State to a Big Ten Championship game and a Bowl Win? I know this a big what if but with the schedule its definitely a possibility if the defense comes together like many are predicting. Wouldn’t it be counter productive to the Buckeyes to start Braxton next year and stunt further growth of JT for just 1 year. I think if Braxton does come back he will only be the QB if JT doesn’t have a good year. If JT does good I think Braxton will have to change positions which may be better for him in the grand scheme of trying to get into the NFL anyway.

  30. planecrashguy says: Aug 19, 2014 9:14 PM

    Rating SoS in the pre-season is pure folly. Yes, you can look at schedules in the big picture and say an SEC schedule is going to be tougher than a SBC schedule, but much beyond that makes no sense. Detailed SoS can only be rated at the end of a season, not before.

  31. wvucolumbus says: Aug 19, 2014 9:26 PM

    I feel bad for Buckeye fans here in Columbus. Not only has their star suffered a season-ending injury, but they have the following home schedule to look forward to:

    VTech (better game now that Miller is out)
    Kent St (ugh)
    Cincinnati (ugh)
    Rutgers (ugh)
    Indiana (ugh)
    Illinois (ugh)
    Michigan (only good due to the rivalry but they will suck)

    I have an honest to goodness question to ask Buckeye fans (I live here in town, btw). How do you guys get up for these games against inferior talent? I would just think that, as a fan, it would be such a bummer to have such a crummy home schedule. Add to this, the fact that your highlight reel QB is out and I truly do feel bad for such a rabid fan base who values football as much as any other.

  32. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 9:55 PM

    wvucolumbus,

    Don’t worry about us. I can’t even remember when you guys were even in a national championship game or even the bowl game you guys were in last year. Assuming that wvu is your team.

  33. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:01 PM

    wvucolumbus,

    When you lose to Maryland 37-0 and to both Kansas and Kansas State and win against William and Mary by a TD maybe you guys should look at getting a cupcake schedule also. How can you guys go to games knowing you’ll never be a national contender…..ugh.

  34. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:02 PM

    canetic,

    Still bitter about the ’02 season I feel ya.

  35. dmarado says: Aug 19, 2014 10:03 PM

    How does a wvu fan get up for games against teams that routinely beat them like a rented mule?

  36. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:03 PM

    moondog440,

    Hawkeyes good fans. Respect.

  37. iwishwvuwouldbeatbama says: Aug 19, 2014 10:11 PM

    @jrs45
    Bro if we had the money to pay our players we would have a national championship too. Speaking of which, that last one you guys played in was pretty funny! Also love all this academic hype, when Andy Katzenmoyer (probably the best LB to ever suite up for OSU, I am assuming from your snarky remarks your a kid who doesn’t know much about the sport) graduated and went to the pros he washed out almost immediately due to the fact that he could barely read….

  38. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:13 PM

    JT has a fascination with hating on the Buckeyes. He fits right in with the several other trolls on CFBT. I guess life really sucks when you have to pile on a 21/22 year old and reminisce on SoS that a team has. Hate all you want. OSU will always be in the Top 5 in attendance, will always be in the Top 25 rankings 9 out of every 10 years, continue to produce NFL talent, will still be in the Top 10 in recruiting classes and still continue to have fans all over the country/world. The beat will continue to go on just like The Best Damn Band In The Land!

  39. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:16 PM

    iwishwvuwouldbeatbama,

    I’d like to think Chris Spielman was the best to ever play LB at OSU. But thanks!

  40. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:19 PM

    iwishwvuwouldbeatbamaoractuallyanybody

    The ’02 NC you can laugh at. But laugh harder at the fact you (WVU) have never ever been in one. I’d take Katzenmoyer over your best dback ever ummm PacMan ring a bell??? Real winner buddy! Derp!

  41. auburntigers34 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:24 PM

    watchfullhose says:
    Aug 19, 2014 6:39 PM
    What part of 5th toughest schedule can’t you understand, troll?
    ————————————————————
    5th toughest schedule in what? the Leaders(or is it Legends) division?

    Ohio State’s schedule is pathetic(as always).

  42. iwishwvuwouldbeatbama says: Aug 19, 2014 10:26 PM

    Actually JR troll we were in 1988 VS Notre Dame, before your time I am sure. And check your stats about Chris Spielman VS the Big Cat, the awards they won and so on and so fourth. Funny I know more about your team then you.

  43. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:27 PM

    I can take Sec fans talking trash about our strength of schedule but I don’t wanna hear it from WVU fans lol. That’s just ridiculous. I give them credit for signing up to get spanked by bama but geez you beat William and Mary by a TD lol.

  44. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:30 PM

    1988 lmao. Oh how can I forget. I mentioned overall career of Spielman since you mentioned Katzenmoyers nfl career. Tool!

  45. iwishwvuwouldbeatbama says: Aug 19, 2014 10:33 PM

    Yes, Let me know when you play Bamma, Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, and K state in the same season.

  46. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 10:40 PM

    But don’t bring up William and Mary James Madison and Georgia State. I’ll give you bama and Oklahoma not the rest. Maybe Baylor.

    Bring back 1988!

  47. uziele says: Aug 19, 2014 10:44 PM

    Should be pointed out that here is Ohio State’s new starting QB:

    Loving that culture in Columbus…

  48. jrs45 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:06 PM

    uziele,

    I agree the 3rd string QB sounds like a dummy. Good thing JT Barrett is the starter now. Although he’s made some dumb comments already.

  49. 4512dawg4512 says: Aug 20, 2014 4:02 AM

    He’s lucky cause he would have destroyed every joint in his body and then spontaneously human combusted if he were playing in the SEC! SEC!! SEC!! SEC!!

  50. jrs45 says: Aug 20, 2014 5:04 AM

    4512dawg4512,

    You might be right. But Braxton didn’t lose to Nebraska like you guys did last year right Uga……B1G B1G B1G!!!!!

  51. general74 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:27 AM

    To the guy who said Katzenmoyer washed out of the NFL because he could barely read is an idiot. Katzenmoyer washed out of the NFL because he broke his neck. Before that he was starting for the Pats and playing very well. Ignorant comments like that show you just hate Ohio State and don’t care about the facts.

  52. jrs45 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:42 AM

    General,

    Welcome to the OSU hate zone.

  53. wvucolumbus says: Aug 20, 2014 9:23 AM

    Wow! I was honestly asking the question about your home schedule. I KNOW we suck (WVU). It wasn’t a knock against OSU. You can’t control the fact that your conference sucks. I was literally curious about how such a football power and its fans get up for a football season w/ so few competitive games.

    Geesh!

  54. PokeSalad says: Aug 20, 2014 9:30 AM

    Im sure Gordon Gee will have some Little Sisters of the Poor on the schedule real quick. OSU is real good at scheduling middle-school teams when they need ‘em

  55. jrs45 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:36 AM

    PokeSalad,

    Hey troll Gordon Gee isn’t at OSU lmao. Idiot!

  56. dhardy8207 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:55 PM

    “Non contact injury that will require surgical repair”..

    Must be a torn Rotator cuff or Labrum tear. Either injury can really be a painful recovery even for a youngster his age…

    I wish him the best of luck with his recovery…

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