There still isn’t nearly enough data to get a solid grasp on who ranks where in the 2013 Heisman Trophy race. There’s also the trend of late-comers to the race.
It’s been a long while since a preseason front-runner ran the table and grabbed the Heisman Trophy at the end of the season. This is right about the time a few players start making a name for themselves and push into the limelight (I’m looking at you Lache Seastrunk and Melvin Gordon).
As it stands right now, here is my list of the top 10 Heisman candidates. I’ll also list out my rankings by position after four weeks of play.
1. Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M – Manziel won’t be a popular pick, and some voters will absolutely penalize him for his offseason troubles and on-field bravado. I tend to like the best player at the most important position on the field, but that’s just me.
2013 Stats: 77-for-110 (70%) for 1,228 yards passing and 12 touchdown passes with 255 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 3,684 yards and 36 touchdowns passing with 765 yards and nine touchdowns rushing.
2. Marcus Mariota, Oregon – Mariota has some of the same run and pass skills that Manziel has without the mistakes (through three games Mariota hasn’t thrown a pick). Mariota’s completion percentage in his first two games has him a shade behind Manziel, but not by much.
2013 Stats: 49-for-82 (59.8%) for 889 yards passing and seven touchdown passes with 262 yards rushing and four touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 3,556 yards and 28 touchdowns passing with 1,048 yards and 16 touchdowns rushing.
3. Lache Seastrunk, Baylor – Seastrunk showed off some blazing speed in Baylor’s win 70-7 over Louisiana-Monroe and ranks second in the country in yards per game among running backs with 30 or more carries.
2013 Stats: 38 carries for 417 yards rushing (11 yards/carry) and six touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 152 carries for 1,668 yards rushing (11 yards/carry) and 24 touchdowns.
4. Teddy Bridgewater, Louisville – Bridgewater bounced back from last week’s down performance and posted big touchdown and completion numbers. That’s what’s supposed to happen when you move from Kentucky to Florida International. Bridgewater isn’t going to apologize for his schedule, he just has to go out every week and put up monster numbers.
2013 Stats: 79-for-110 (71.8%) for 1,214 yards passing and 14 touchdown passes.
2013 Pace: 3,642 passing yards with 42 touchdown passes and three interceptions
5. Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin – Gordon is a newcomer to the Heisman hype, but let me tell you why he’s now here. In each of his four games he’s ran for more than 100 yards and his 11.8 yards per carry leads the country among running backs with 30 carries or more.
2013 Stats: 53 carries for 624 yards rushing (11.8 yards/carry) and seven touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 159 carries for 1,872 yards rushing (11.8 yards/carry) and 21 touchdowns.
6. Todd Gurley, Georgia – Gurley had an off day (according to his standards) against North Texas and has continually fallen off his Week 1 pace each week. He’s got a big test coming up Saturday against LSU. A big day could vault him back up near the top of this list.
2013 Stats: 63 carries for 377 yards rushing (6 yards/carry) and four touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 252 carries for 1,508 yards rushing (6 yards/carry) and 16 touchdowns.
7. Tajh Boyd, Clemson – Boyd’s game against South Carolina State is what’s holding him back right now, and many players in Heisman contention fall prey to this as they are pulled from games where their team outclasses its opponent. Take out that Week 2 game where Boyd’s backup threw three touchdown passes and Boyd is right back on pace with the top dogs.
2013 Stats: 56-for-90 (62.2%) for 683 yards passing and six touchdown passes with 90 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 2,732 yards and 24 touchdowns passing with 360 yards and 12 touchdowns rushing.
8. Chuckie Keeton, Utah State – Keeton didn’t have the best game against USC on Saturday. While his 53.8 percent completion rate will turn some off, as will his sub-200-yard passing day, Keeton’s still on this list because of his huge touchdown to interception ratio (14:1).
2013 Stats: 103-for-144 (71.5%) for 1,102 yards passing and 14 touchdown passes with 172 yards rushing and one touchdown run.
2013 Pace: 3,306 yards and 42 touchdowns passing with 516 yards and three touchdowns rushing.
9. AJ McCarron, Alabama – McCarron is still holding on to that impressive performance in his duel with Johnny Manziel and the Texas A&M Aggies. Outside of that game, however, his other two outings have been pedestrian by Heisman standards.
2013 Stats: 50-for-78 (64.1%) for 702 yards passing and six touchdown passes.
2013 Pace: 2,808 yards and 24 touchdown passes.
10. Paul Richardson, Colorado – Because of a bye week and a postponed game, Richardson’s Colorado Buffaloes have played just twice. Richardson is still the ninth-ranked receiver in the country with 417 receiving yards and no one is close to his 208.5 yards per game average.
2013 Stats: 21 receptions for 417 yards (19.9 yards/reception) and four touchdowns.
2013 Pace: 126 receptions for 2,502 yards (19.9 yards/reception) and 24 touchdowns.
Top 5 Quarterbacks
- Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M
- Marcus Mariota, Oregon
- Teddy Bridgewater, Louisville
- Tajh Boyd, Clemson
- Chuckie Keeton, Utah State
Top 5 Running Backs
- Lache Seastrunk, Baylor
- Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin
- Todd Gurley, Georgia
- Alex Collins, Arkansas
- De’Anthony Thomas, Oregon
Top 5 Wide Receivers
- Paul Richardson, Colorado
- Jordan Matthews, Vanderbilt
- Brandon Cooks, Oregon State
- Odell Beckham, LSU
- Davante Adams, Fresno State