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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Ex-Falcon running back finds blues

Now a blues musician, Paul Miles was one of the most talented students to ever appear on Bowling Green’s football field – and he wasn’t even in the band.

During his time here, Miles received numerous awards and accomplishments as one of the most prolific runnings backs BG football has ever had. Yet today, instead of making music with his feet on the football field, he makes music with his guitar as a prominent blues musician in Detroit.

Paul Miles came to BG from Paulding, Ohio, in the summer of 1970. Although he received many accolades while in high school, he was given no special treatment, as he was placed seventh on the depth chart his freshman year.

“It was a real big change for me,” Miles said. “After being the starter and All-Conference in high school, I realized that I had to exercise the gifts given to me in order to succeed.”

And did Miles ever exercise those gifts. In his sophomore year, he ran for 1,185 yards. He followed up that season with 1,130 and 1,024 yards in his junior and senior years respectively. Miles was Mid-American Conference Player of the Year in his senior year, in addition to being a three time first team All-MAC selection.

During his BG career, he ran for 25 rushing touchdowns, which currently ranks 5th all time.

“All that success was a real thrill for me, being a small town kid,” Miles said.

He felt that his achievements at BG would be able to land him a roster spot on an NFL team.

As it would turn out, Miles’ talent was so highly thought of by pro football scouts that he was drafted by not one, but two teams.

The Baltimore Colts, who picked Miles in the eighth round of the 1974 draft, and the Memphis Southmen of the World Football League. Miles played for the Southmen during that WFL season because they guaranteed him a roster spot.

While he had a decent amount of success that year, the Southmen folded prior to the next season. Miles then contacted the Colts, who told him that he could try out for a spot on the team, but they would not guarantee him a spot because they had selected two running backs in that years NFL draft. The Colts cut Miles after his tryout, effectively ending his pro football career.

Sometimes when life gives you the blues, you just have to make blues music.

“My dad bought me a guitar just before my freshman year, so I was always playing it whenever I had some free time during training camp,” Miles said.

He played at coffee houses in Bowling Green, and even wrote some poetry. So it came as no surprise that Miles turned to music after his playing days were over. He is now a full-time entertainer, specializing in blues music. Miles plays the guitar, piano, and bantar.

Miles has now self-produced seven albums. His latest one, “Deep Water Blues,” is a tribute to the victims of Hurricane Katrina. This album received a nomination for Best Acoustic/Folk Album in the 2006 Detroit Music Awards.

Miles currently lives in Detroit, where he has played at famous city venues such as Baker’s Keyboard Lounge and Comerica Park. Miles also remains active in the BG community, playing at a tailgate party at the Clash in Cleveland and a Detroit alumni chapter function.

While Miles currently has a successful music career, he does harbor some regrets about his football career.

“I wish we would have won a MAC Championship,” Miles said. “We had some outstanding teams, but we were never able to get over the top.”

He also expressed some regret about his failed pro career, but then added that he is content with his current life.

“I really believed that I could have played at the pro level, but I’m pretty happy with my life right now, so I’m not going to beat myself up over it.”

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