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Dissecting the 2010 Heisman Race

 

The end of the college football regular season is upon us as it is time to prepare for the bowl season. Before we move on to college football’s post season as the games are set, there is still one issue up for debate that some athletes may covet more than their bowl victory. This of course, is the decision that is made in New York City to determine college football’s most valuable player, the Heisman trophy. The five invited candidates have been set and have displayed there talents throughout the entire year. Who the winner will be is always an interesting debate, as some may feel others are more deserving than others, and with this years class the question of who will win is present again.

Starting with the quarterback of Stanford, Andrew Luck has been predicted to be the NFL’s number one overall pick in the upcoming draft. He has dominated at Stanford this year posting an 11-1 record, with the only loss coming to the undefeated and National Champion contender Oregon in a game where he threw for 341 yards and 2 touchdowns. Luck finished the regular season with 3,051 yards, 28 touchdowns and 7 interceptions and has led Stanford to the Orange Bowl. Luck played solid throughout the year and had three games throwing four touchdowns, while also posting three 300 yard performances. Luck is one of three quarterbacks vying to win the Heisman trophy this year and his credentials are certainly there to bring home the trophy.

Another top candidate is the amazing running back out of Oregon, LaMichael James. James is part of Oregon’s fast paced offense that is heading to the National Championship game against Auburn. James has helped lead Oregon to their 12-0 record by rushing for 1,682 yards and 21 touchdowns. James has ran for at least 90 yards in each game he has played with three 200 yard rushing performances and three games running for three touchdowns. James may be in trouble due to the amount of skill that he is surrounded with on offense, but his skill at running back have been incomparable to any others this season. It will be interesting to see how he fares in the voting and his electrifying play is definitely deserving of the Heisman trophy.

 


The next top candidate would be the highly regarded quarterback out of Boise State, Kellen Moore. Moore has had a special season throwing for 3,506 yards with 33 touchdowns and only 5 interceptions. Moore has been the spectacular while leading Boise State to an 11-1 record, with their only lose coming to Nevada in Overtime due to two missed field goals. In the loss Moore put up a gem throwing for 348 yards on 20 of 31 passes with 2 touchdowns. Moore had four games with at least 300 yards passing, including a 500 yard dismantling of Hawaii. The competition the Moore faces may be the only downfall for his case to win the Heisman playing in the WAC conference. His consistency should be able to erase these biases as Moore through for at least three touchdowns in eight games this season. His chances to win the Heisman may be lowered due to the conference he plays in, but nobody could argue giving Moore the trophy.

A low key candidate to most of the country, Justin Blackmon has torn it up catching balls this season for Oklahoma State. Blackmon had been the main reason Oklahoma State finished the season with a 10-2 record by catching 102 balls for 1,665 and 18 touchdowns. Blackmon finished the season by grabbing at least 100 yards a game and posted 125 yards in all but one game. Blackmon had five games this season catching two touchdowns and was the main reason for Oklahoma State’s success this season. Blackmon’s chances of winning the Heisman may be limited due to the high quality of the other candidates, but he is well deserving of the invitation to the New York City ceremony.

And now for the favorite. Quarterback of Auburn Cam Newton has been the front runner to win the Heisman for a good portion of the season, and deservedly so. Newton has led Auburn to a 13-0 record, and a date to play Oregon in the National Championship game. Newton has been absolutely out of control this season throwing for 2,589 yards and 28 touchdowns while rushing for 1,409 yards and 18 more touchdowns. Playing quarterback in the SEC is next to impossible as defenses seem to get tougher each week, but Newton put the team on his back all season and has made it look easy. Newton had five games throwing at least three touchdowns, seven games with at least two rushing touchdowns and eight games with four or more total touchdowns. These statistics are virtually impossible to shy away from due to the competition that Newton is faced with each week. Newton lead his team to victory by coming from behind in five games this season, including an astonishing comeback against Alabama, where Auburn trailed 24-7 at halftime. Newton has came from behind in these games and has done this with ease either threw the air or on the ground all season long. The only negative mark Newton has to his resume is the “pay-for-play” scandal that has overshadowed his play for much of the season. The scandal has been all but resolved through the NCAA as Newton was found to have no knowledge of this notion and has excelled his play during these allegations. In the SEC championship game against South Carolina, Newton dominated by throwing for 335 yards and four touchdowns, while rushing for 73 more yards and two more touchdowns. Newton will have to wait and see how much of an affect these allegations have, but if all goes as planned Cam Newton will be the first Heisman trophy winner out of Auburn since Bo Jackson did it in 1985.

 

 

By Jason Stein
DFN Sports Staff Writer

 

 


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