By Ashley Dunkak
DETROIT (CBS DETROIT) – At about the 18-second mark of the video, you see Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller rush from the sideline to join the fracas. Miller quickly drags away Michigan’s Dymonte Thomas (No. 25) by his shoulder pads or helmet and then appears to either throw a punch at Thomas or attempt to violently toss him to the ground.
Thomas bounces up and tries to get back at Miller, who by that time was blocked off by two wise teammates who pulled him away from the melee. Miller went on to finish the game with six passes for 133 yards and 153 yards on the ground, where he averaged more than 9 yards per carry. He threw for two touchdowns and rushed for three more.
Two of Miller’s teammates, kick returner Dontre Wilson and offensive lineman Marcus Hall, were ejected from the game for their roles in the brawl – roles that included throwing punches. Ejections sometimes carry suspensions, which would have Big Ten championship implications as the Buckeyes play Michigan State this weekend.
News of whether or not that will happen is forthcoming.
“The conference office will wait until after the game for the officials’ written report, review the video and then take further action if needed,” Big Ten spokesman Scott Chipman told the Associated Press.
If the conference believes Miller threw a punch, he could be in consideration for suspension also. The NFL fines players for non-flagged indiscretions all the time. Would the Big Ten do the same?
From only looking at the angle showed on television, a suspension of Miller seems unlikely. For one, it is hard to tell whether Miller threw a punch. Probably more influentially, Miller is a big name. Lastly, college football has a precedent of deferring punishment when big games are imminent. When “tattoo-gate” struck Ohio State in 2011, the five players in questions were allowed to play in the bowl game, their suspensions served the following season.
Of course, all that is moot if Miller did not actually throw a punch. What do you think – did he?