Braxton Miller, John Simon Honored as Big Ten's Best

By Kyle Rowland on November 27, 2012 at 7:00p

Braxton Miller captures the Big Ten's Offensive Player of the Year Award as a sophomore

A day after the Big Ten’s awards were mocked roundly, Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller and defensive end John Simon were named the conference’s offensive and defensive players of the year, respectively, as voted on by a combination of media and coaches.

The story of Monday night’s All-Big Ten selections was the amount of players, not just Buckeyes, which were snubbed. Miller and linebacker Ryan Shazier were two of the biggest. But Michigan’s Jake Ryan was also slighted.

Legions of Big Ten fans scorned the coaches, whose ballots differed greatly from the media’s honorees. In Columbus, though, a sense of redemption was had on Tuesday as Miller and Simon were honored as the Big Ten’s best.

Miller was named the first-team quarterback by the media Monday as well as the Griese-Brees quarterback of the year. Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez was tabbed as the coaches’ first-team quarterback somewhat controversially.

Miller was second in the league, averaging 275.8 total yards per game. He became only the third quarterback to rush for 1,000 yards in a season in Big Ten history, joining Antwaan Randle El and Denard Robinson. Miller rushed for 1,271 yards and 13 touchdowns, the first Meyer-coached player to eclipse the 1,000-yard plateau.

“I’m grateful for this moment and this honor,” Miller said. “And I am very thankful for the coaches we have and for their working so hard with us.”

In the season opener, Miller broke the single-game rushing record for an Ohio State quarterback and did so again versus Nebraska, tallying 186 rushing yards. 

Five times Miller totaled 300 yards of offense, which tied a school record. He topped the school record in total yards for the season with 3,310 yards, breaking the 17-year record held previously by Bobby Hoying.

The Davey O’Brien finalist threw for 2,039 yards and 15 touchdowns. He completed almost 60 percent of his passes.

“Winning this award is quite an achievement for this young man because he can still get better,” Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer said. “I am happy for him and very proud. This is a terrific honor for a Buckeye to receive.”

Miller's predecessor, Terrelle Pryor, was named the conference's preseason offensive player of the year but never took home the postseason honor. 

Simon, referred to as the ‘heart and soul’ of the Buckeyes by his teammates and coaches, led the conference with nine sacks. He had a school-record tying four sacks in his final collegiate game at Wisconsin. 

John Simon is your 2012 Big Ten Defensive Player of the YearJohn Simon is your 2012 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year

“It means a lot,” Simon said on winning the award. “It's truly a great honor, but it’s a team award first and foremost. I praise those guys for helping me get this.”

It was during the game against the Badgers that Simon suffered a knee injury that knocked him out of his Senior Day versus Michigan. Ohio State won, 26-21, to complete an undefeated 12-0 season.

“It was extremely tough to have to stay on the sidelines that last game and to watch your family go out there and play,” Simon said. “But they stepped up and got the win and I’ve never been more proud of a group of guys in all my life.”

Simon was second on the team and third in the conference with 14.5 tackles for loss.

“I think everyone knows how highly I think of John Simon,” Meyer said. “He is absolutely one of the finest young men I have had the privilege to coach. His determination and effort and selfless approach are second to none, and there is no better player or person to be honored with this player of the year award.”

Miller and Shazier’s second-team honors were from the coaches, leading many to believe it was a direct shot at Meyer. The Big Ten coaches have not welcomed the fiery and uber-competitive Meyer with open arms.

During the height of the 2012 recruiting season, Bret Bielema and Mark Dantonio each accused Meyer of dirty tricks on the recruiting trail. The mud slinging got so bad that commissioner Jim Delany got involved and helped patch things up.

A few weeks after National Signing Day, Meyer addressed the situation at the annual Ohio High School Coaches Convention in Columbus.

“You know what, I’ve got nine guys who better go do it again,” he said, referencing his assistants’ aggressive recruiting. “Do it a little harder next time.”

In September, Spartan defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi accused Meyer and the Buckeyes of sending game film that didn’t include important signals, motions and shifts.

“We had tape cut off all week, where they changed the tape,” Narduzzi said after the game. “I’m not going to lie to you. They send you tape and they’ve got it all cut off, and you don’t get to see shifts or motions or anything else.”

Meyer said he was unaware of the situation and athletic directors from both universities said the matter was handled earlier in the week.

Winning and changing the culture of the antiquated Big Ten might not win over fans in the 11 other Big Ten locales. But Meyer is already being hailed as a Pope in Columbus.


Comments Show All Comments

Matthew's picture

Lock to be in the pre-season top 2 for Heisman favorites.

Class of 2010

SilverBulletNYC's picture

Congrats to Braxton and Simon! 

The South will NOT rise again!

sir rickithda3rd's picture

lol it happens all the time... "if ppl are hating it means your doing something right"

mark may wins douchebag of the year... again

sir rickithda3rd's picture

also an absolute travesty mr simon didnt get to play against mich.... at least the guys brought home the w for him and the other seniors

mark may wins douchebag of the year... again

buckeyedude's picture

That was big on my mind. It would've been worse though, had the Buckeyes lost with Simon on the disabled list, because I'm sure he would have forever felt responsible.
This was a very happy ending for the seniors, coaches, and fans. NCAA be damned.



LouGroza's picture

My thoughts on Simon exactly. How hard would that have been on him to live with that loss, being unable to play and help the team, if it would have ended that way? So happy for Mr. Simon and the rest of the guys.

ODEEZ330's picture

6 of the last 11 def B1G poy are buckeyes. hahaha nice also if simon was 2nd in tfl who was 1st on the team and B1G? RDS?

stark county football

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

So much for watching BTN Live. lol

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

Bill O'BRIEN...unFUCKINGreal

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

JakeBuckeye's picture

Ohio State will never win Coach of the Year. Or at least it will be very hard to. We're Ohio State, and that award is more of a feel good and/or surprise team award. Take it as a compliment to our program.

LadyBuck's picture

No offense, but you're actually surprised? There was no way Urban was going to win for going undefeated at OSU. We're the power and class of the conference, and people expect us to win until we don't. Now, after the Sandusky debacle, no one expeted Penn State to be even remotely good. 

avail31678's picture

Understood and agreed.....but TWELVE AND 0!  After 6-7!  It was a bigger turnaround for OSU.
I do appreciate what O-Brien did at PSU... he rallied a team, minimized attrition, and did well this season.  He's showing signs of being a good college coach. 
It really doens't matter.  Urban isn't in this for the COY awards.  He wants championships.  So do we (as fans).    But really, if Tressel could NEVER win it with his insane number of conference championships and a national title etc., and Urban can't win it in a magical and special 12-0's pointless to try and hope for it. 

faux_maestro's picture

It was a bigger turnaround for OSU.

But didn't State Penn go 0-fer last year? Actually, haven't they gone 0-fer the last 13 years? I mean they haven't won a game since 1998 and they went 8-4 this year. That's a pretty epic turnaround....

Your mom told me she wants a Dicken Cidar.

kr66osu's picture

Predictably COTY goes to O'Brien
No OSU coach will ever EVER win that award, we might as well just stop worrying about it in the future because it will never happen.

avail31678's picture

Agreed.  See my post above (which I wrote before reading your post).  This summarizes what I conclude.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

So for the last decade tOSU has had the best coach in the conference, but 0 BiG Ten COTY awards. Makes perfect sense.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

LouGroza's picture

He coached a team that he could go on 4th down at his own 40 in the first half with zero repurcussions. Who wants his job? No one. He had nothing to lose and everything to gain and still only went 8-4. John L. Smith won B1G COY in 2002 I believe. The joke continues.

JLP36's picture

I think Ferentz won the Ferentz COY Trophy in 2002.


cplunk's picture

I hope the rest the B1G coaches are pissed every year. Something needs to wake the conference the f*** up already. 

BoFuquel's picture

This is just the first stone cast by Delany and his high council of 13.They will not rest until This evil pestilence is driven from their circle.But for a season B1G, PREPARE TO BE BUCKEYED.Your fate is assured.THE URB WILL, BUCK YOU.GO BUCKS!

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

theDuke's picture

@B1G Coaches- Take some notes why dont'cha!


MVJ's picture

If signing the best recruits, hiring the best coaches, winning the most games, and pissing people off costs you the Coach of the Year Award, I hope our head coach loses it from now until eternity. In my book, it's how the Big Ten awards participation ribbons.

"You win with people "

LadyBuck's picture

It's good to see Braxton and Simon get the attention and accolades they deserve. Congratulatios to all of our buckeyes.

buckeye76BHop's picture

Bet I know who wins COTY next will be hard not to give it to him if he does what I think he will.  At least OSU had a clean sweep of all other honors for the players.  Both Offensive and Defensive players of the year is pretty damn good.  
Hard to argue though if you look at what Urban did with what he had, compared to what O'Brien had to deal with coming in.  Urban was expected to have a pretty damn good season.  Where as O'Brien wasn't expected to do squadouche after losing their first two games to a mid-level MAC team in Ohio U and lower level ACC team in Virginia.  To finish 8-4 is some what of a miracle in all honesty.  However I still think Urban should have got COTY...but I'm a homer for sure.  

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987 

JLBNYC's picture

I wouldnt bet on it. 
Kirk Ferentz - 3-time Coach of the Year, including 2002! that is all you need to know. 
They can give it to whomever they want; we will take the championships!

Bet I know who wins COTY next will be hard not to give it to him if he does what I think he will.  At least OSU had a clean sweep of all other honors for the players.  Both Offensive and Defensive players of the year is pretty damn good.


MediBuck's picture

Honestly, I don't know why fans in the league are so butthurt about Meyer's uber-intense personality. This so-called "gentleman's agreement" is exactly the lazy, complacent attitude which has set the B1G back in recruiting, coaching innovation, and on-field competitiveness. Outside our little holier-than-thou bastion of the Great Lakes and Plains, the college football world is a dirty, bloody affair, where only the strong survive. That, in turn, partially explains why outside of OSU and scUM, the Midwest has struggled to keep its finest recruits in conference and becomes the FBS's whipping boy (with the exception of the ACC) each post-season. 

I think the attitude Coach Urban brings to the league will be beneficial to the Big Ten, as everyone else will have to step up their game. Basically, join the train or get run over by it. Besides, Coach Tressell was the consumate gentleman who was adored by all coaches not named Lloyd Carr or Rich Rodriguez in the B1G and he never took home the conference COY. Clearly, the vendetta is against the university, not the men who lead the Buckeyes.

"There is a force that makes us all brothers, no one goes his way alone." --Woody Hayes

bucknut24's picture

Not getting COY will be Urban's motivation to beat the shit out of everyone next year!  I hope he blows out every team.

buckz4evr's picture

Wasn't Coach Tress named the 2002 (I think) National COTY, while the B1G named Ferentz?  What a joke that was.  I think of the B1G awards as more of consolation prizes for all the other teams and players, especially the head coach.

DaiTheFlu's picture

After this obvious slight, dissing Braxton and RDS by putting them on the 2nd team, Brady Joke not shaking hands and Mark Dantonio/Bert Bielema talking shit about Urban's methods, I am very, VERY worried for the Big Ten next year. Urban's gonna have HIS guys on his team and a full year more implementing his offense and his mentality. When 2013 Ohio State leaves your town, there will be nothing left but a path of broken bodies, crying grandmothers and gnashing of teeth .
Dear B1G: Ya'll really, really screwed up.

We can't stop here; this is bat country...

MediBuck's picture

Worried? No pity for the enemy. When Meyer is busy picking the bones of the B1G out of his tire treads in the offseason, you think he's worried about how they feel? I hope we go 13-0 through the conference the rest of his tenure until they get their ***t together.

"There is a force that makes us all brothers, no one goes his way alone." --Woody Hayes

Buckeyejason's picture

Yep, we're going 60-0 the next 5 years !1!1!1!1!!!...


toad1204's picture

Good thing that extra digit was added to the score board.  We're gonna need it next year.

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

BuckeyeBoyer85's picture

Ha. Braxton gets Off player of the year, but is relegated to 2nd team by coaches. Good to dee Urban ruffling feathers.

Wayne Woodrow Hayes

Maestro's picture


vacuuming sucks

thatlillefty's picture

"Five times Miller totaled 300 yards of offense, which tied a school record. He topped the school record in total yards for the season with 3,310 yards, breaking the 17-year record held previously by Bobby Hoying."
How many of these records credited to Brax are due in part to TPryor's stats being wiped off the record books? By the way, in no way do I mean this as a slight to young Braxton. Matter of fact, I couldn't be happier for the kid. I see a bright future (Heisman) ahead for him and this buckeye squad (Natl Title)... fingers crossed.
Also, who else is watching Indiana absolutely demolish UNC right now? Daaaaamn, they look solid.

CSAR Buckeye's picture

Miller topping 300 yes total offense five times is a school single season record.  Terelle Pryoy did it three times his sophomore year (TOL, MIN, ORE) and four times his junior year (MIA-FL, EMU, IND, ARK).  Also, Pryoy did have more total yards his last season.  Pryor's season total yards were 1,942 his freshman year, 2,873 his sophomore year, and 3,526 his junior year.

buckeyedude's picture

I feel that the COY award has about as much meaning as the AP poll.
Starting in 2014, we actually have a 4-team playoff, which is a step in the right direction, IMO. These personal awards are nice, but they are akin to a beauty contest or a bodybuilding competition. Not worth getting your panties in a bunch.



Doc's picture

Congratulations Braxton and John, well deserved. Congrats to BOB as well.  He had a tough row to hoe this year and did admirably.  I'm sure Urbz could give two shits for the COY award given by a weak ass conference.  He's a big boy and wants big boy awards.

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

Alice in Aggieland's picture

He's a big boy and wants big boy awards.

Forget "boy." He's a grown-ass man.

brumon's picture

I don't understand the context of that quote from Narduzzi. This might be a noob question but why would we send MSU tape? Aren't teams suppose to scout on their own and collect their own tape of teams?

Earle's picture

Teams typcially exchange video of their earlier games with the upcoming opponent.  Narduzzi was crying after the game that the video OSU sent did not contain all of the pre-snap shifts and motion.

Snarkies gonna snark. 

osubuckeye4life's picture

Congrats to Brax360 and Simon!
Both very deserving of the awards. 

Buckeyejason's picture

Congrats to these guys. I would've gave the award to Shazier over Simon though. Braxton could possibly win 3 BIG 10 P.O.Y awards during his time here..that's insane!
I can't help but think of all the Buckeye fans on here trashing John Simon most of the year and yet the man walks away with BIG 10 defensive P.O.Y. Crazy how things work out.
How does Braxton win player of the year and not make 1st team ALL BIG 10? These awards are freaking weird.