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Monday, July 28, 2014
Braxton Miller 'ready to go'

By Austin Ward
ESPN.com

CHICAGO -- The plan called for a smooth transition. It lasted for only a single workout.

Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller was supposed to ease his way back into throwing the football as he progressed through his rehabilitation from offseason shoulder surgery, picking up a tennis ball first.

That blueprint didn't last long, however, as Miller put his ability to accelerate things on the field on display by zipping through his recovery schedule and zipping around passes with his rebuilt arm.

Braxton Miller
Braxton Miller says he's feeling better than ever after offseason shoulder surgery.

"Yeah, I threw a tennis ball for one day," Miller told ESPN.com on Monday. "One day, and then they were like, 'Wow, you're throwing pretty good. You can move up to a football.'

"I was just like, 'Yeah, I'm ready to go.' My body is ready to go."

Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer confirmed that to reporters at Big Ten media days on Monday.

"He is ready to go," Meyer said of Miller. "He's full speed, best shape he's ever been in his life."

That's welcome news for a team with national-title aspirations that revolve around the star senior's athleticism and ability to test teams with more than just his legs. With Miller dealing with some soreness at the end of last season and then damaging his shoulder further in the Discover Orange Bowl, the Buckeyes clearly weren't the same explosive team while he was operating at something less than 100 percent.

The first plan for recovery didn't even involve going under the knife, but that was eventually scrapped as well when the shoulder wasn't showing enough progress after about a month of rehab heading into spring practice. The Buckeyes ultimately made the decision in February to have the procedure done, forcing him to miss all of camp and taking the ball out of his hands until May.

But it's back there now and has been for about two months, and Miller seemingly hasn't missed a beat since then as he looks to continue his trend of improving as a passer every season.

"I feel like it's stronger," Miller said. "Man, everything that was damaged in there has been cleaned out. So even if I didn't have that injury, I feel like everything from before that injury has been cleaned out. I barely had any rust when I came back. With my footwork and everything like that, I had been focused on that throughout the spring. That's all I was doing, going back to work on my footwork, breaking down the defenses, and I watched a lot of film to make sure everything's good.

"Everything is in place. I'm at the end of my recovery, feeling pretty good and ready for camp. I'm ready to go for real."