Would you believe that Coach Prime isn’t a big moral victory guy? Would you believe that after the Buffs’ comeback attempt on Saturday, he was asked specifically about it? For a coach who goes pretty long on a lot more questions than most, he was quick to answer whether or not he believes in moral victories:
“No, I don’t.”
That’s juuuust a bit shorter than his answer on freshman wide receiver Omarion Miller:
“I been telling him, ‘I need you to step up,’ even from day one in the summer during workouts and everything else. I said, ‘You could be a big part of the offense, or have a freshman year and wait.’ I’m glad he finally came in and understood who he was as a player. Everybody’s human. Everybody can be beat and he has what it takes to be able to go out there and dominate so I’m happy he was able, in one of the biggest games of the season to go out there and do that.”
Even with all the conversation about his eye-popping numbers, there’s still this weird feeling that Miller’s afternoon isn’t being talked about the way it should be. He’s a true freshman. Those were the first catches of his college career. He was also an afterthought in a lot of pre-season depth chart breakdowns. In just two quarters of play he became one of the more interesting storylines on the back half of this season. Just look at where he is when he catches his first ball of the day (00:04 mark) and where he is, like, five seconds later. For someone who’s 6’2 and right under 200 lbs, that speed will work. (Those weren’t Mountain West corners, either.)
More than a few of his highlight reel catches – that nice play on a go ball late in the 3rd quarter, the sideline toe tap, his touchdown, etc. – really did a good job showcasing what he can bring to the Buffs’ offense. On the deep ball, he played through some strong, maybe questionably illegal contact to make a hell of one-handed grab all while finding a way to maintain his balance, more or less. And even if that touchdown was mostly a Super Hero throw from Shedeur Sanders, the catch required tremendous body control and concentration.
That’s what was so exciting about Miller’s debut. He flashed a little bit of Xavier Weaver and a little bit of Jimmy Horn Jr at the same time. You could tell me he was getting starter’s reps at the X or in the slot and I’d believe you. His range is something that, oddly enough, the Buffs haven’t really had a lot of so far – other guys can make all the plays Miller can, but Miller’s one of only three guys in the WR room that’s both over six feet tall and 200lbs. And maybe that’s the last we see of Miller this year – he is a freshman, you’ll remember – but my guess is that he sticks around. The Buffs may have, as they say, found a good one. Or, judging by the way the depth chart looks right now, found a good half dozen.