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Dave Maetzold

Buckeyes take a back seat to a Buckeye

 
Buckeyes take a back seat to a Buckeye
Posted February 20th, 2014 @ 11:22pm

Ohio State's basketball team defeated Northwestern Wednesday night but didn't stand a chance against Braxton Miller.

Aaron Craft (an academic All-American) and his basketball teammates were trailing the Wildcats 7-5 when the first TV timeout occured.

The Ohio State quarterback came to center court to publicly receive the Silver Football Award which goes annually to the Big Ten's most valuable player.

A fine moment for Braxton. More than a few basketball Buckeyes likely snuck a peek at their fellow OSU athlete as he acknowledged the applause from the crowd.

Braxton disappeared under the stands. The game resumed and something odd happened.

Most of the assembled media corps assigned to cover the basketball game, left the game in pursuit of Braxton Miller. It was as though they were giving money away in the media room.

In yet another sign that no matter what any other team might be doing at the time, Ohio State football matters most.

Miller was speaking to reporters for the first time since the loss in the Orange Bowl.

He addressed his decision to return to Ohio State and play his senior season for the first time since that decision was announced.

So, there was clearly some news value there.

But was it so important it couldn't wait? At least until halftime?

Miller is the highest profile of all Ohio State athletes. The quarterback for a team that lives in a world where a successful season is defined only as one ending in a national title.

He's the best in the Big Ten and one of the best in the country at what he does.

But.

He was in the basketball team's house. During a Big Ten basketball game. Could he not have shown a little respect to what they were trying to do?

Was he not interested in their pursuit of another win?

Did he have a class he had to get to?

It wasn't thought out very well.

The basketball Buckeyes have changed the perception of their school only slightly over the past ten seasons.

Two Final Fours, perennial 20 win seasons and several highly drafted players have moved the basketball program to great heights nationally but they still play second fiddle on their own campus.

It wasn't Miller's fault. He was no doubt doing what he was told.

It wasn't the media's fault. When the town's most well-known athlete speaks for the first time in more than six weeks, reporters need to jump.

The timing could and should have been better.

The basketball team is too classy and too busy to worry about it.

Braxton probably didn't even notice it.

Nor did anyone else.

Some things won't ever change.

 

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