The Heisman race is over. The Heisman voters may as well send the award to Auburn QB Cameron Newton right now and just save everybody time. The only thing now left to be determined is who will be joining Newton at the Heisman ceremony on Dec. 11th in New York
Anybody that does join Cam Newton will be jockeying for 2nd place and down. There are still quite a few players with hopes of making it to New York to be apart of the Heisman ceremony.
The Front Runners
- Cameron Newton (QB/Auburn) – Cam Newton clinched the Heisman Trophy on Friday afternoon. The last hurdle in front of him and the stiff-arm trophy was the defending National Champions, the Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. Throughout most of the first half, it appeared that Newton’s Heisman hopes were taking a hit along with his team’s hopes of playing in the BCS National Championship game. But, Cam led Auburn to an unbelievable comeback from 24-0 down to beat Alabama 28-27. The Alabama defense held Newton’s legs in check as he finished with just 39 yards rushing on 22 carries and a touchdown. But the Heisman frontrunner showed his ability to win the game with his arm. He threw for 216 yards on 13/20 passing and three touchdowns to lead his Tigers past the Crimson Tide and to a perfect 12-0 regular season. When all is said and done and the Heisman is given away, it will go to Cameron Newton and it’s not that close.
- LaMichael James (RB/Oregon) – LaMichael James fell back into third place the last couple of weeks after he and the Oregon Ducks struggled against the California Golden Bears in Berkley. But, after Boise State lost to Nevada, LaMichael James was able to get back into second place on my Heisman ballot. (Not that I have a vote or anything.) On the big stage on Friday night against Arizona in Autzen, James finished with 126 yards on 28 carries with two touchdowns to help lead the Ducks to a 48-29 come from behind victory over the Wildcats. Oregon has just one more hurdle to jump and that is in the Civil War next week against Oregon State and they will be headed to the National Title game.
- Andrew Luck (QB/Stanford) – The Stanford QB continues to gain momentum in the Heisman race and has moved up to third thanks to his performance against Oregon State this weekend. Luck carved up the Beaver secondary by completing 21 of his 30 pass attempts for 305 yards and four touchdown tosses in Stanford’s 38-0 rout of Oregon State. Luck was brilliant and has been all season as he and the Cardinal pretty much locked up a BCS bowl bid. There is a pretty good chance he ends up jumping LaMichael James unless the Oregon RB has a huge performance next week in the Civil War. If he did, it would mark the second consecutive season that a Stanford player finished 2nd in Heisman voting.
- Kellen Moore (QB/Boise State) – Even though Boise State lost to Nevada on Friday night in a shocking upset, Kellen Moore remains firmly in the Heisman race. It certainly wasn’t his fault that the Broncos went down in Reno. He had a Heisman-like performance and made a Heisman-like throw at the end of the game to Titus Young that set up what should have been the game winning field goal. We all know what happened next. Kellen Moore finished with 348 passing yards on 20 of 31 throwing and two touchdowns. Moore’s chances of winning the Heisman are gone, but he is still likely to receive an invite to the ceremony to watch Cam Newton win the award.
- Justin Blackmon (WR/Oklahoma State) – Blackmon had his worst performance of the season in Oklahoma State’s 47-41 loss to Oklahoma to end the Cowboys’ Big XII Title hopes. Of course, his worst game of the season is still much better than anyone else’s as he finished with 8 catches for 105 yards and a touchdown in the loss. Don’t expect Blackmon to make a serious push at the Heisman or anything, but he has a very good chance of making it to New York and finishing 4th or 5th after his incredible season in Stillwater. Imagine the numbers he would have put up if he was able to play against Kansas State.
Just off the Pace
- Ryan Mallett (QB/Arkansas) – Ryan Mallett’s chances of being a Heisman finalist gained a lot of steam after Arkansas’ 31-23 win over LSU on Saturday afternoon. If Auburn beats South Carolina in the SEC Championship game, then Mallett will lead Arkansas into the Sugar Bowl. Mallett added to his brilliant season for the Hogs with 320 passing yards and three touchdowns in their win over LSU. For the season, Mallett has thrown for 3592 yards and 30 touchdowns this season to lead Arkansas to a 10-2 record with their only losses coming at home to Alabama and on the road against Auburn. Mallett could end up being a finalist if voters shy away from Blackmon due to his DUI arrest earlier in the season.
- Terrelle Pryor (QB/Ohio State) – My preseason pick to win the Heisman Trophy finished up a solid season for Ohio State by leading the Buckeyes to a 37-7 win over Michigan. In the win, Pryor threw for 220 yards on 18/27 passing with a pair of touchdown tosses while adding 49 yards on the ground. Pryor isn’t likely to get an invite to the ceremony, but he finished the season strong and all but assured Ohio State a BCS bowl berth and a split of the Big Ten Title with an 11-1 record. If the Buckeyes hadn’t lost to Wisconsin in Madison, Pryor would likely be a finalist.
Falling off the Pace
- Marcus Lattimore (RB/South Carolina) – Marcus Lattimore had begun gaining ground in the Heisman race the last few weeks, but the true freshman won’t be in New York for the Heisman ceremony unless the Gamecocks shock Auburn next week and he has a legendary performance in the SEC Championship Game. But, Lattimore is certainly to be one of the frontrunners to being next season and his brilliant freshman season in Columbia should be noted. He’s rushed for 1114 yards and scored 17 touchdowns on the ground for the Gamecocks. But, his 48 yard performance on 23 carries ended any shot he had at being a finalist for the award.
- Andy Dalton (QB/TCU) – Unfortunately for Andy Dalton, he was injured against New Mexico and wasn’t able to finish what started as a brilliant performance. I think his chances of being a Heisman finalist took a serious hit. He’s has a brilliant season and did throw for 156 yards with three touchdowns against the Lobos, but other people had stronger performances and it hurt his chances. But, it’s not a knock on Dalton in any stretch, because he has had a magnificent season for the Horned Frogs and they are very much alive in the National Title race. They just need an Oregon or Auburn loss next week to allow their dream to become a reality.