Why Ohio State’s Backup QB Could Be the Most Important Player in the Big Ten

Ask yourself this: What if Kenny Guiton hadn’t been on Ohio State’s roster in 2013?

Would the Buckeyes—minus starting quarterback Braxton Miller, who went out with a knee injury in the second game of the year—still have gotten off to the 4-0 start that sparked a perfect regular season?

An early misstep would have cost them the Big Ten title game and their first trip to the BCS since the end of the Jim Tressel era.

If not for their No. 112-ranked pass defense, a slip-up could have cost Ohio State a clear shot at a national championship.

Without Guiton as Miller’s backup in 2013, the Buckeyes would have faced San Diego State, Cal and Florida A&M with either J.T. Barrett or Cardale Jones under center.

While it’s impossible to say with any certainty what would have happened without Guiton, it’s a sure thing that in 2014 if Miller goes down—yet again—it will be Barrett or Jones leading Ohio State in its quest to reach the first-ever College Football Playoff.

How big of a deal is this?

Well, the Buckeyes—who are No. 6 in Athlon’s early top 25 for 2014—will be relying on two backup quarterbacks who combined are an all-time 1-of-2 for three yards in the college ranks.

How Likely Is an Injury?

Is Miller really an injury-prone player or instead is the issue a product of media hype?

According to Ari Wasserman of Northeast Ohio Media Group via Cleveland.com, Miller has left six games…

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