In truth, Miller was probably hurt by his very consistency. He was never very flashy.
Last year, three WVU linemen made either the first or second team - Chris Neild, Scooter Berry and Bruce Irvin. Irvin was flashy and made the first team this year and probably deservedly so. Irvin's numbers didn't approach the gaudy figures many had predicted, but he still finished with more sacks (7.5 to 6) and more tackles for loss (14-11) than Miller despite constant double teams.
But it's still odd that a guy who will finish his career at least eighth on the Big East's career sack list (he would be No. 6 with two in the Orange Bowl) never made even the league's second team.
Of course, it's pretty easy to imagine that Bailey's snub was due in part to the same sort of overshadowing. Tavon Austin came into the season as the guy defenses game planned against and it didn't do much good. He led the team with a school-record 89 catches and he did make the first team, along with Rutgers' Mohamed Sanu.
It's hard to argue with Sanu, who caught 109 passes and broke the Big East record by 17. But while Austin had 22 more catches than Bailey, Bailey had more yards, a much higher yards-per-catch and had 11 receiving touchdowns to Austin's four.
"I was kind of disappointed at first, but it is what it is,'' said Bailey, whose highlight-reel catches far outnumbered Austin. "I feel like I had a great season and that's pretty much all that matters. It kind of motivates me to want to do a little more and try to earn some respect. But it's all right.''
For the record, Bailey's 1,197 yards (and counting) rank No. 8 on the Big East's all-time single-season list.
"I just think it's disrespectful to Stedman,'' said Smith, his former high school teammate. "He's the best receiver in the conference.''
As for Smith, he's as politically correct about his own snub as Holgorsen, passing it off as nothing that really matters in the grand scheme of things. And he's right, of course.
Then again, the player who was chosen the league's offensive player of the year was Cincinnati tailback Isaiah Pead. He didn't lead the league in rushing, didn't average 100 yards and had only one more rushing touchdown than Shawne Alston.
Shoot, there's probably a better case to be made for Austin as the offensive player of the year over Pead. Austin's average all-purpose yards (191.2) are the second-best in league history. As for Smith, well, it will probably be the first quarter of the Orange Bowl when he gets the 46 yards he needs to break the league's single-season passing mark.
The bottom line, though, is that it's all subjective. Know this: Of the Big East's top 10 single-season passers, only two were named the league's top offensive player the year they set those marks, so Smith is in good company.
The man whose record he is about to break, Louisville's Brian Brohm, is the only player in league history to pass for more than 4,000 yards. But he did that in 2007, two years after he had been named the offensive player of the year as a sophomore. In the interim, some guy named Pat White came along.
In other words, none of it should matter all that much, which is a good reason to adopt Holgorsen's attitude and just ignore it.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com.