Time For The Next Heisman Hero: Who Will It Be?
With the college football season ending and the bowl season beginning, there is that span where at least bowl bound teams get a break and awards are handed out between the two college football seasons.
Among those awards is the prestigious Heisman trophy awaits college footballs best player. In years past the media has taken a couple of players nominated and placed them on a pedestal.
This year is no different. And like years past, I totally disagree with the players that are always being talked about. Since I have to pick between the 5 players nominated to be some what accurate in my winning pick for the trophy, my picks line up like this...
AJ McCarron would be my pick if I had a vote that counted. The junior quarterback is playing for his second straight national championship and he is not even in the conversation for the Heisman trophy. McCarron has only lost two games in the past two seasons along with his national championship. He completed 66.8 percent of his passes this season for 2669 yards, 26 touchdowns, 3 interceptions and a quarterback rating of 173.1.
Even though Braxton Miller is in the top 5 finalist I find it hard to believe that the voters will give him the Heisman. Out of the top 5 finalist; Miller is my favorite to win. He is the least talked about player in the final 5 and could very easily slide in for the steel. Miller led Ohio State to a 12-0 record only to have to sit at home and watch Alabama play Notre Dame for the national championship instead of his Buckeyes playing.
Even though he can't play for the championship; Miller put up Heisman numbers all season completing 148 of his 254 passes for 2,039 yards and 15 touchdowns. Unlike McCarron; Miller could light the crowd up with his legs. He had 1,271 and 13 touchdowns on 227 carries. The only real downfall to Miller was his 15 interceptions and 28 sacks. As a running quarterback a lot of those sacks came with Miller scrambling around.
If Miller is my top player out of the final 5 selected; that means Notre Dame senior linebacker Manti Te'o is runner-up. Te'o; a Butkus and Nagurski award winner finished the season in a tie for the most interceptions with 7. He also had 100 tackles for the third straight season. The numbers do not really show justice for what type of player Te'o is. Anytime he is on the field Te'o is capable of changing the whole game with one play.
With the 2013 draft coming up Collin Klein is the most NFL ready quarterback to be selected as a finalist for the Heisman. He has already won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award. As a senior at Kansas State Klein has lead the Wildcats to an 11-1 record. Klein had the Wildcats set up perfect to play for a national championship until a devastating 52-24 week 12 loss at Baylor.
Even with the 1 loss on his record; Klein had an awesome season completing 66 percent of his passes for 2,490 yards and 15 touchdowns. He also had 890 yards and 22 touchdowns rushing. Klein also protects the ball well; only throwing 7 interceptions all season. Look for Klein to be drafted in the middle of the first round or early in the second round this spring.
When voting for the Heisman; it would be unnatural if a wide receiver or running back was not selected to the final 5 finalists. This season USC sophomore wide receiver Marquis Lee has that honor. Lee led the Trojans in receiving with 1,680 yards; second most in the country only behind Baylor's Terrance Williams' 1,764 yards. Lee led the nation in receptions though with 112.
He also made a serious impact in the Trojans' kick-return game gaining 802 return yards. Lee contributed to the scoring with his 14 touchdowns. No matter who USC played this season Lee put up big numbers. In 3 different games he had receptions that went for 75 yards or more. One more season at USC and the giant receiver will be prime property for a special NFL team.
Now that all the other finalists are gone means; Texas A&M freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel rounds out the final 5 finalist. Manziel has had an amazing year at A&M while leading the Aggies to a 10-2 record their first season in the SEC.
What A&M has done their first year in the SEC is amazing after the season they are coming off of. The A&M offense was left without a quarterback after losing Ryan Tannehill to the draft and Manziel has stepped in as if he has been the starter for years. Manziel completed 273 of his 400 passes for 3,419 yards and 24 touchdowns.
When he was not using his arm; Manziel would use his legs running for 1,181 yards and 19 more touchdowns. He also beat Alabama 29-24 on his first try. Not many other quarterbacks can say they did that. Manziel has already won SEC offensive player of the year his first year as a starter; just wait for the next couple of seasons to come. Manziel has all the skills to become the greatest player at his position ever.