The field for the Ohio State quarterback competition appears to be thinning out with little more than two weeks before the season-opener against Akron. What was once a four-way battle is now head-to-head contest between redshirt senior Joe Bauserman and true freshman Braxton Miller.
Basically, it has finally come to what everyone knew it would eventually come to.
The Dispatch reports that Basuerman and Miller split about 80 percent of the snaps on Thursday — roughly 40 percent each for the second day in a row — while redshirt sophomore Kenny Guiton and redshirt freshman Taylor Graham split the remaining reps. Head coach Luke Fickell, true to form, gave no indication as to who he's leaning towards.
With all due respect to redshirt sophomore Kenny Guiton and redshirt freshman Taylor Graham, it's really been a two-horse race from the onset. Graham and Guiton would have had to absolutely blow Fickell and the coaching staff away in the first couple of practices to even get out of the gates.
Bauserman served as Terrelle Pryor's understudy for the past two seasons and saw limited action last season in blowouts against the likes of Marshall, Ohio, Eastern Michigan Purdue and Minnesota. On the season he 16 of 22, completing 72 percent of his passes for 124 yards, a pair of touchdowns and on interception.
It's not a bad line, but it hardly adds up to a game's worth of experience. while Bauserman's been around the program longer and had more time to acclimate with the first team in camp. he hardly has things wrapped up.
Miller graduated from high school early to enroll at Ohio State in the spring and impressed in the Spring Game. But that was with Terrelle Pryor helping him in the huddle and plenty of players, such as Guiton, have put on sterling spring performances but never got it together, or go the chance to, in the fall.
Miller told has been learning four plays a day at practice and hitting the playbook hard in his hotel at night to try to retain more but it will still be an uphill battle if he's to become the first true freshman to open the season at quarterback since Art Schilchter.
Saturday is the jersey scrimmage and the defenders will get the opportunity to get more than just a hand on the quarterbacks. It will give coaches the chance to see how calm Bauserman can be in the pocket and how evasive Miller can be outside of it.
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