TSL Roundtable: The Braxton Miller injury

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How does the loss of Braxton Miller change your outlook on the Ohio State game?

Hokie CPA: I’m writing while on vacation in Daytona Beach. Never let it be said that Hokie CPA doesn’t make sacrifices for his fans.

Okay, so football is the ultimate team sport. Eleven guys are needed to execute an attack with fluid precision in order to matriculate the football down the field and eventually score. While the quarterback is largely considered to be the most important cog in the machine, there are still ten other guys out there helping the QB look as good as he does.

Last week at this time I would have said we had maybe a 5% chance of pulling this off. Without Braxton Miller, of course our odds improve. Maybe now we have a 15% to 20% chance of winning this game. Our defense is certainly capable of keeping us in this game, but at the end of the day we still need our offense to move the chains and score some points on a pretty darn good Buckeye defense which is not affected by the loss of Braxton Miller. And we have to it in The Horseshoe© in Columbus in front of 100,000 Buckeye fans. It can be done, but it’s still a tall order.

Baltimore Hokie: OSU has a lot going for it.  They are 24-2 the past two seasons.  Urban Meyer’s spread offense is brutally effective.  Their last four recruiting classes were ranked 11th, 4th, 2nd, and 3rd – they clearly aren’t hurting in the talent category.  They have a returning DL that’s been ranked No. 1 in the nation by at least one preseason magazine.  They have everything it takes to sustain themselves as a Top 10 program.

Oh, and by the way, they had a Heisman Trophy candidate at QB.

I hope you see where this is going.  Taking Braxton Miller out of the equation doesn’t change the fact that OSU is operating at a much higher overall level than VT.  His replacement will be a highly talented player even if he lacks experience.  So OSU still will be, and should be, favored by a substantial margin.

But then again, there’s that ‘lacks experience’ thing that’s sitting there staring at us.  Because Miller isn’t the only player who’s being replaced – most of his OL is as well.  And inexperienced players make mistakes.  So our best chance at winning will be to play error free ourselves, pressure the new guy a