STIFF-ARMING TROPHY RACE
I believe we will remember the 2012 Heisman race as historic, but it has hardly been compelling. There is not much of a debate, and there truly wasn’t much conversation about the award during the season. Part of that is a lack of preseason hype. Even the annual forwarding of Heisman candidates in August lacked excitement. We had some names to work with, Matt Barkley, EJ Manuel, Landry Jones, Marcus Lattimore, Montee Ball, and Denard Robinson were among the most popular, but clearly they did not pan out.
We had really only three “hot” names all season: Geno Smith, Collin Klein, and Johnny Manziel. Johnny Football had already put up record setting numbers before upsetting Alabama in Tuscaloosa and it wasn’t truly until then that he really began to stir national conversation. If that never happened, I think voters reluctantly would be giving the award to Notre Dame LB Manti Te’o feeling no other options were “good” enough. It did happen however, so Manziel is the heavy-betting favorite.
Predicted Order of Finish
Winner: QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M
The numbers and records have been detailed week after week by me in these blogs. We have the first freshman winner in history. Hershel Walker, Mike Vick, and Adrian Peterson came closest previous. This is a good story on the best freshman seasons ever before this year. Just based on other-worldly athletic ability of those men, Manziel is elite company. Most importantly, after winning, Manziel will have 2-3 opportunities to join Ohio State’s Archie Griffin as a 2-time winner.
2. LB Manti Te’o, Notre Dame
Charles Woodson will remain the only defensive player to win the award. Yes, he returned punts and played some receiver, but I wish people would stop attempting to put an asterisk on him winning it as a defensive player.
3. QB Collin Klein, Kansas State
If the Wildcats would not have lost, he would have won the award.
4. WR Marqise Lee, USC
5. QB Braxton Miller, Ohio State
6. RB Kenjon Barner, Oregon
7. RB Montee Ball, Wisconsin
8. LB Jarvis Jones, Georgia
9. WR Tavon Austin, West Virginia
10. RB Stepfan Taylor, Stanford
Others receiving votes: QB Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois, DE Jadeveon Clowny, South Carolina, QB Tajh Boyd, Clemson, RB Jonathon Franklin, UCLA
Navy -6.5 vs. Army
Coming into the season, the Black Knights had hopes of not just beating Navy but making a bowl game. It hasn’t worked out that way. The Midshipmen have won every match-up since 2002 in this one-sided rivalry. After losing by 46, 28, 29, 19, 12, 35, and 34, the last three games have been decided by 14, 14, and just 6 a season ago. Even with that, it would take a leap of faith to side with Army in this one.
STRAIGHT UP: 105-51/9-4
AGAINST THE SPREAD: 80-72-4/6-6-1
UPSET SPECIAL: 6-7/0-1