Wide receiver Jalin Marshall didn’t know what to think when he saw hybrid back Braxton Miller lying motionless on the turf Saturday night. A hush fell over the crowd of 108,075 as many wondered if the Ohio State fifth-year senior from Wayne High School had just saw his last action as a Buckeye.
“I thought it was worse than it was,” said the Middletown grad Marshall, a sophomore wide receiver. “He just hit his head and said it felt like he couldn’t move at that time so he just laid there and made sure everything was all right.”
Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said Miller had a sore neck Monday, and he anticipates him practicing Tuesday. Miller suffered the injury on the tackle after a 45-yard reception in the fourth quarter of the 28-14 victory over Minnesota.
Wide receivers coach Zach Smith said Miller is as tough a receiver as he’s ever coached and that it will take a serious injury to keep him out of the game Saturday at Illinois. He raved about the transition Miller has made from quarterback to hybrid back.
“It’s been a really rewarding process both for him and me and the team,” Smith said. “To see a kid who went through what he went through, being who he was, the focal point, the star, then obviously the devastating injury and re-injury, then being able to help him get to a place where he can make an impact again and see the relief and satisfaction he had with being back on the field, it’s one of the most rewarding things I’ve seen.
“When he broke down (after scoring two touchdowns against) Virginia Tech and I gave him a hug, it was probably one of the top two or three things I’ve ever done. I was here late in the night through the summer with him. I saw how hard he was working. To see him get the reward and the satisfaction and relief, it was really cool.”
Bell honored: The Big Ten named safety Vonn Bell defensive player of the week on Monday. He returned an interception 16 yards for Ohio State’s first touchdown and set a career high with 10 tackles in the 28-14 victory over Minnesota.
Champion grades: Meyer named Bell and defensive end Joey Bosa defensive players of the game and running back Ezekiel Elliott and right guard Pat Elflein offensive players of the game. Freshman Denzel Ward was named special teams player of the game.
Other players earning champion honors were: Joel Hale, Michael Hill, Tyquan Lewis, Adolphus Washington, Sam Hubbard, Darron Lee, Joshua Perry, Eli Apple, Marshall, Michael Thomas, Billy Price, Taylor Decker and Nick Vannett.
Game time: Ohio State’s last home of the season against Michigan State on Nov. 21 will start at noon or 3:30 p.m., the Big Ten announced Monday. The game time likely will be announced Saturday night. It will be televised on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2.
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.