Darrian Miller recalls the first time he ever carried the ball for the Blue Springs High School football team.

Darrian Miller recalls the first time he ever carried the ball for the Blue Springs High School football team.

And the perennial all-state running back, who is the reigning Missouri Gatorade Player of the Year, also remembers his last carry as a Wildcat.

 In between those carries, it gets a bit fuzzy, but for anyone who saw the all-time big class rusher in the history of the state defy opposing defenses while carrying his team on his back, the memorable moments are too numerous to mention.

“The greatest thing about blocking for Darrian was that you knew if you made your block, he could take it all the way,” Wildcats offensive lineman Donnie Horner said.

“And you knew that even if you didn’t make your block, Darrian could still do something special. He’s the best.”

Miller is the best.

He put a lot of distance between the previous Missouri big class rushing mark of 6,346 yards set by former Fort Osage standout Dalton Krysa when the Blue Springs senior and The Examiner’s 2010 Player of the Year finished this season with a remarkable 6,566 career yards and 88 touchdowns on the ground (he also caught four touchdown passes).

Miller was a unanimous selection, earning his second consecutive Examiner Football Offensive Player of the Year award.

“When Carlos Anderson (who is now starting at the University of Northern Iowa) graduated, I was talking to some of our coaches and I said that we might never see another back like Carlos,” Wildcats coach Kelly Donohoe said.

“And along comes Darrian Miller. He could impact a game with one big run, and he did that time after time after time. Carlos was so special because he could cut on a dime and he was tough to bring down.

“But Darrian comes along and after watching him his sophomore year we just said, ‘Holy cow! That kid’s a player.’ And he did things we hadn’t seen before. He has unbelievable cat-like quickness and he’s so strong.

“He made a run on a fourth-and-four play where he basically crawled on all fours to get the first down. Everyone remembers the big fourth-and-two run when we beat Rockhurst and went to state two years ago, but that fourth-and-four run is the one I remember. I don’t know how he did it.”

When asked about the run, Miller grinned, shrugged his shoulders and said, “I don’t know how I do a lot of the stuff I do. I really don’t. We’ll watch film, I’ll have a run and guys will ask how I do it. I don’t know – I just do.”

Miller keeps that grin on his face when asked about his first high school carry.

“I don’t remember who we were playing, but I remember I was a freshman and I came into the game late and they called a 24 ISO and I knew that meant I was going to carry the ball, and I was scared,” he said, chuckling.

“I got like three or four yards. I didn’t make a mistake or fumble, and I felt a lot better after that carry.”

His final carry came in a 7-0 loss to Rockhurst in the Class 6 state semifinal game. He carried the ball 33 times for 154 yards, but couldn’t find the end zone.

On the Wildcats’ final drive, he carried the ball on a third-and-six and picked up 5 yards.

Quarterback Kyle Brown attempted a sneak on the fourth-down play, was stopped, and Miller and the Wildcats saw their season come to a disappointing end.

“We wanted to go to state for the second year in a row, and it didn’t happen,” Miller said, “but we had a great season and I look back on my time at Blue Springs High School and I can say I loved every minute of it.

He especially loved an 11-yard carry with 1:39 left in the second period of a 49-28 Class 6 sectional win over Raymore-Peculiar.

“That was the record breaker,” he said. “All the linemen kept asking me, ‘Did you break the record? When are you going to break the record.’ It was great to break it at home and share with all those guys.

“I’ve told you this 100 times … I owe everything to my coaches, my teammates and my offensive line. They’re the reason I was able to break the record.”

Miller never liked talking about the record while the Wildcats were still playing.

Now, he says it’s something that will have a greater impact the in the future.

“Sure, 6,556 yards is impressive,” he said, “but I’ve got a lot of football left to play. I’m going to Kansas to play football and when my football career is over, that’s when I’ll look back at my high school career.

“I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished, and I’m thankful that I was a part of this football program. But it’s all too fresh to think about now. I’ll sit back some day and think about it – but not now.”

He did say winning The Examiner’s Offensive Player of the Year award for the second season in a row was special.

“It’s special because it’s something I can share with my team and my coaches,” he said. “I’m not a one-man show. It’s a team thing, and when you win something like this two years in a row, you want to share it with everyone.”