Thursday, June 12, 2014

BRAXTON MILLER HAS MOST CLUTCH WINS, BUT IS HE MOST CLUTCH?

Braxton Miller
TBT/Darla Dunkle-Hudnell
COLUMBUS — Although some folks feel he hasn't quite lived up to his full potential, Ohio State senior quarterback Braxton Miller can't exactly be labeled an underachiever, either ... right?

In nearly three full seasons as the Buckeyes' starting signal caller, Miller has put up an impressive 26-8 record, including a 22-2 campaign in two years under head coach Urban Meyer. 

He is also less than 2,300 yards from being the all-time leading passer in school history, and just 715 yards shy of becoming the greatest runner Columbus has ever seen — not named Archie Griffin.

But many pundits point to his 0-3 record in the postseason and state that he's unable to shine when the spotlight is brightest. That he can't win in crunch time.

However, according to a survey conducted by the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) sports information directors this week, the "crunch time" statement doesn't hold water. In fact, Miller is the most clutch quarterback in college football, according to their findings, leading all active FBS passers in game-winning touchdown drives with six.

"I think Braxton having the most game-winning drives reinforces what we have believed about this young man all along: that he is a fierce competitor and one of the most valuable players in the country." Meyer said.

While he is a fierce competitor, and certainly one of the most, if not the most, valuable players in the country, Miller's legacy in Columbus will not be about school-records or game-winning drives against Wisconsin, Iowa, Northwestern — or even Michigan. It will be about winning against Alabama, Florida State and other national powers ... in the postseason.

Heck, even Michigan State in the conference title would help his cause tremendously.

I know that sounds like a bunch of extremely lofty expectations, but that's what it all boils down to with Miller.

No amount of yards, touchdowns, school-records or game-winning drives will supplement winning championship-level games.

His legacy — fair or not — depends on it.