Braxton Miller works on his legacy


Beginning Aug. 3, we're counting down the days until the college football season starts with a look at the 25 most interesting people in the sport.

COLUMBUS, Ohio --- The collection on the dresser is already impressive enough, maybe the finest one ever assembled in Big Ten history.

There are a couple Chicago Tribune Silver Footballs honoring the best player in the conference, a pair of offensive player of the year awards, a trophy honoring the top freshman in the league, and a few more items that Braxton Miller struggles for just a moment to correctly identify.

By themselves, that hardware will be difficult enough to move when the Ohio State quarterback's career comes to an end. But there's still a season a left in his record-setting tenure with the Buckeyes and potentially more trinkets left to collect, which may have to join the overflow that doesn't fit in his place or with the rest of the pile of accomplishments that he kept with his parents before they eventually needed to find extra storage to watch over it all.

"It won't fit over at their house anymore," Miller said. "I've got too many.

"It's kind of tough to keep track of them all. Cannot even name them."

At this point, it's actually far easier to rattle off what's missing from his overstuffed resume, and it's no secret what's at the top of that list.

For all the attention and acclaim that has come Miller's way thanks to his natural arm strength, his incredible mobility, and the way he's parlayed that combination into eye-popping statistics as both a passer and a rusher, his individual achievements far outweigh what his team has been able to do during his three seasons as a starter for the Buckeyes.

There are a couple of pairs of gold pants that Miller is quite fond of, charms reflecting victories over rival Michigan, one of which capped an unbeaten season in 2012. There are also two division titles to his credit, spanning the longest winning streak in school history as the Buckeyes rattled off 24 consecutive victories once Urban Meyer arrived and teamed up with a quarterback perfectly suited to run his version of the spread offense.

But Ohio State has higher expectations than just winning its division, and without so much as a conference championship -- let alone a national crown -- Miller's legacy at one of college football's most storied programs remains very much incomplete despite the stockpile of individual honors.

"You know, he was the main catalyst for shattering basically every offensive record in the history of Ohio State football and winning 24 straight games, which has never been done before at this great university," offensive coordinator Tom Herman said. "He's done this, he's done this, he's done this, he's done this, he's done this, but there's still a 'but.' At the end of the day, that position is defined by not only just winning, but winning championships, too. That's real, and that's part of playing quarterback at Ohio State."

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