Poor Braxton Miller. On a week where there was upheaval in the Heisman race, Miller got knocked out of a game where his team completed an overtime comeback against Purdue. Talk about diminishing value. Is Miller still the best player on the Ohio State football team? Sure, but remember the Buckeyes were losing to the Boilermakers when Miller left with an injury.
Saturday could have been moving day for Miller in the race for the most prestigious individual award in sports; instead Miller moved down. The question now remains, can Miller win the Heisman?
I talked to Elika Sadeghi of Elevenwarriors.com about Miller and she echoed a lot of my thoughts on Ohio State’s quest for an eighth Heisman. A seat at the ceremony for Miller this year would be great, but all BuckEYEs (sorry) are focused on 2013; when Miller will be the prohibitive Heisman favorite with a full year of the newly installed offense under his belt.
As far as that seat at the ceremony is concerned, a strong performance against a resurgent Penn State team could put Miller right back in the drivers seat because no one has a strong claim to the second spot in the race.
The media has been having a Kleingasm all weekend as Collin Klein claimed his spot at the top of the Heisman Watch, but remember where you heard it first, here and here. The reason we have liked Collin Klein for so long here at Heismanpundit is because he’s pure substance. There is very little flash in Klein’s game. It’s not like he is just going to go out and put up 300 yards and seven total touchdowns on national television against a ranked opponent who is led by the current Heisman frontrunner. That’s not his style… Ok, so maybe there is a little bit of flash to go along with all of that substance.
Klein, Bill Snyder and the rest of the Kansas State Wildcats will be favored to win every game for the remainder of the regular season. As best I can tell, the Wildcats have not lost a game they were favored since 2010. Klein’s best statistic going into the Heisman could be 12-0.
Then there is Geno Smith, the much maligned (as of late) quarterback from West Virginia. It’s been a tough couple weeks for Smith, losing badly to Texas Tech and Kansas State. I saw reaction this weekend saying that Smith shouldn’t be a top 10 candidate for the Heisman. That’s preposterous. He’s got the highest completion percentage in the country, thrown for the second most touchdowns, second most yards and has the fourth highest passer rating. The two losses he’s suffered have come against two current top 15 teams. Sure he’s not number one with a bullet anymore but he’s still firmly in the top 5.
To legitimately win the Heisman Smith needs to first beat Oklahoma, a tall task. After that he just needs to do what he’s done for most of the year, throw touchdowns against weaker competition. Playing Kansas the week before the Heisman ceremony certainly won’t hurt either.
–Seth Doege has thrown an FBS leading 28 touchdowns this season in seven games. This is all the more impressive because he has a single touchdown game and a zero touchdown game this season as well.
–In Arizona State’s 43-21 loss to Oregon, the Sun Devil’s only* allowed 48 passing yards. *They did however allow 406 rushing yards.
–Of the top 25 most penalized teams in the FBS, seven are from the Pac 12.
–Air Force has yet to allow a sack.
–Only four full time quarterbacks have yet to throw an interception. Two of the perfect signal callers took over for injured teammates leaving just AJ McCarron and Colby Cameron as the only unblemished full season starters.
–With Cincinnati’s loss on Saturday the state of Ohio now only has two undefeated FBS teams falling into a tie for first place with Oregon.