Today's roster countdown looks at a player who was the most unexpected contributor of the 2010 season not named Bobby Eveld.
#25 WR Joel Miller
Senior, 5'10" 196 lbs.
Stats In 2010: During the summer, Joel made the switch from running back to wide receiver. After catching a touchdown pass against Stony Brook, Miller didn't get much playing time on offense, although he appeared in a total of 11 games. He spent most of the season continuing his work on special teams. But when B.J. Daniels went down, Miller ended up being a security blanket of sorts for Eveld. He caught four passes for 60 yards against Miami, three of which were thrown by Eveld. One helped start USF on their way to the tying touchdown, and another nearly won the game in overtime when Miller got really low to catch a quick slant at the 1-yard line. For the season, Joel made 11 receptions for 121 yards.
Current Position On Depth Chart: Miller was listed as the first string slot receiver on the post-spring depth chart, although that could be a function of Lindsey Lamar not being listed because of injury.
How He Came To USF: Miller started at The Citadel in 2007, but left and walked onto the USF team in spring 2008. He played running back at Tampa's Wharton High School, where he ran for 2700 and 20 touchdowns in his last two seasons and was named to all-Hillsborough County first teams both years. After bouncing on and off the roster for a couple of years, Miller was given a scholarship before the 2010 season.
Recruiting Rankings: Joel was not rated by either Rivals or Scout.
Projected Playing Time In 2011: Like with Stephen Bravo-Brown, it's hard to say where Miller will fit into the offense. With Sterling Griffin and A.J. Love healthy again, with Terrence Mitchell more familiar with the offense, and with incoming freshmen Andre Davis and Ruben Gonzalez having a chance to contribute, is there still room at wide receiver for Joel? It's so hard to know how much of his playing time at the end of last year was because of opportunity and how much was true talent. Where he ends up on the depth chart after this weekend's scrimmage should be very interesting.
At the very least, Miller will continue playing on special teams, and if Armando Sanchez is deemed too valuable to keep playing on that unit, he may become the new coverage maven.