BAD NEWS FOR BIG 12 HEISMAN HOPEFULS
By mark rogers
November 26, 2008
Graham Harrell, Michael Crabtree, Sam Bradford and Colt McCoy have all had fantastic years and received national exposure, but they might end up canceling each other out. Let's look at the nominees.
Crabtree (the Texas Tech sophomore WR) trails only seven receivers across the country in receiving yards. He's second in the nation with 18 TD catches, tied for sixth in receptions and plays for a team that's been seen on national TV several times this year.
Bradford (OU's sophomore QB) is third in the nation in passing yards with 3,710, second in passer rating, second in yards per attempt, first in TD passes with 42 and has only thrown six interceptions. He, too, has played on a national stage this year and is a well known name.
Colt McCoy (Texas' junior QB) is eighth in completions, first in completion percentage at just over 77%, 12th in passing yards, has thrown 30 TDs against just 7 picks and is fourth in passer rating. He's played on a national scale the last three seasons, is a household name after his performance in big games this year and gets a ton of coverage from ESPN.
Graham Harrell (Tech's senior QB) is first in passing yards, first in completions, third in completion percentage, third in TD passes, only thrown six interceptions and also receives national coverage and people know him.
You could make a case for any one of those players to be a legitimate Heisman Trophy contender.
There's just one problem.
They all play in the same conference and in the same region.
Historically (and as unfair as it may be) the Heisman Trophy voting has a lot to do with TV market size, publicity and seclusion.
And I mean seclusion in the sense that the candidate is in a region or area or coast all by himself.
Harrell, Crabtree, Bradford and McCoy may have all picked the wrong season to be playing so well.
They could very well split all the Big 12, midwest votes and allow another candidate from a big market to take home the most coveted trophy in college football.
Look at Tim Tebow (my pick before the season). He's fifth in passer rating, thrown 22 TDs against just two picks (a better ratio than McCoy, Harrell and Bradford) and is completing nearly 66% of his passes on a team ranked second in the AP that will have a chance to be #1 going into the bowls if they can beat Alabama in the SEC Championship.
And there's really no other true contenders on the entire East Coast or in the SEC.
You could make an argument for some other guys, but they may be on non-contending teams.
While true that the Big 12 contenders are household names, not all of the Heisman voters follow the games and performances across the nation. It's easier nowadays with ESPN GamePlan and all the different channels that games are on. And it probably wouldn't matter if there were just two Big 12 contenders...but having four is just too many.
I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think any of the Big 12 contenders has a shot to win. There's just too many good players in too close a zone.
You may read and see on TV that one of those (or two or three of those) Big 12 guys is the frontrunner...but when the voting shakes down, it'll go to the player on a contending team that doesn't have any competition (especially not four athletes that deserve to win) in his region.
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