Club: Western Australia/Subiaco/Railways (Kalgoorlie)
Draft Range: 2nd to 3rd round selection
– Travelled to Perth from Kalgoorlie on a weekly basis to play football
- Explosive Athlete
– Ranked elite in the Goalkicking test, the Agility test and the 20m sprint
- Round 1 Starter
– Played senior football since the age of 15, holding him in good stead
AFL U18 CHAMPIONSHIPS STATISTICS
2017 WAFL COLTS STATISTICS
The budding Kalgoorlie star is one of the most explosive key position prospects in this year’s AFL Draft.
He started playing senior football at the age of 15 for his Kalgoorlie team, Railways FC – a club that has produced many outstanding football players, including Dean Kemp, Steve Marsh and Jim Gosnell.
He first came across recruiters’ minds when he was selected in the WA State U16s Academy in 2015. He further enhanced his reputation when he made his debut for the Subiaco Colts in round one of the 2016 season, against Peel Thunder, when he won a game-high 19 possessions. He played a further three games for the Lions and averaged 18 hit-outs, including a dominant 36-hitout performance against East Perth in round 11.
But 2017 was when he left his mark on recruiters’ minds. By the first six rounds of the competition, Miller was sitting fourth in the WAFL Colts Coaches Award after dominant outings against Perth in round 2 (16 possessions, 30 hit-outs, 4 marks, 4 tackles, 2 inside 50s and a goal), West Perth in round 3 (11 possessions, 29 hit-outs, 2 tackles, 2 inside 50s and a goal), and Claremont in round 6 (17 possessions, 17 hit-outs, 4 marks, 3 inside 50s, 2 tackles and 2 goals).
Because of his sublime performances, he was selected in the WA U18s State Academy and he did not disappoint. In the four games, he won the most hit-outs for WA (72), laid the fourth most tackles (16), won the fifth most clearances (8), ranked seventh for contested possessions (22), and was in the top twelve for total possessions (42).
His best game came against Vic Metro in round two, when he accumulated 15 possessions (seven contested), won a game-high 28 hit-outs, laid five tackles, won three clearances and kicked a goal. His direct opponents Tristan Xerri and Sam Hayes could only register 26 possessions, 25 hit-outs and a goal between them, such was their inability to negate Miller’s influence.
He also produced solid outings against the Allies (11 possessions – eight contested – 12 hit-outs, five tackles, four inside 50s, three marks, and three clearances), and Vic Country (12 possessions, 18 hit-outs, four tackles, three marks and two clearances).
In his comeback game for the Subiaco Colts in Naidoc Round, he was clearly best afield against Perth with 18 possessions, 44 hit-outs, seven marks, three inside 50s, two tackles and a goal.
He only played another two games for the Lions, against Swan Districts in round 20 (13 possessions and five marks – playing as a key defender) and East Perth in round 23 (16 possessions, 20 hit-outs, two marks, two inside 50s and a goal), as he had to juggle his school commitments back home in Kalgoorlie.
For our interview with Ben, click here.
WHY PICK HIM?
For a player of 196 centimetres, Miller is explosive, agile, clean and consistent – traits that make him such a tantalising prospect.
At the AFL National Combine, he came first in the Goalkicking test (30/30), the Agility test (8.10 seconds), and came third in the 20-metre sprint (2.91 seconds).
At this year’s AFL National U18 Championships, Miller recorded 72 hit-outs, the third most by any ruckman in the competition, just behind Allies’ Brayden Crossley (83 hit-outs), and South Australia’s Callum Coleman-Jones (78). While he only played nine games in the WAFL Colts, he recorded the ninth most hit-outs (192 at an average of 21 per game), largely due to his imposing nature.
Miller has also been playing senior football since the age of 15 for his Kalgoorlie team, Railways FC, hence he is ready to match it with the ruckmen in the AFL from round one.
THE QUESTION MARKS?
His big question mark is his size. He only stands at 196 centimetres, while most true ruckmen at AFL level are over 200cm. To combat this, Miller has some awesome athletic traits. He has also demonstrated his versatility by playing as a key forward, and as a key defender for Subiaco throughout 2017.
For any clubs looking out for a key position prospect, and it would be hard to imagine any clubs that aren’t Miller is well worth looking at.
Because he has been playing senior football since the age of 15, Miller could slot into a club’s best 22 after a strong pre-season such is his maturity, ability and determination.
For his size, he boasts explosive athleticism and beautiful skills, making him a tantalising prospect at this year’s Draft.