Tuck: The Headless Heisman Trophy Race


College football is loaded with really good players, that are doing really good things, but I’ve never been less interested in who wins the award than this season.

1.  There is usually some kind of debate.  Whether it’s between 2, or 3, or 4 guys, but usually you can make strong arguments for both sides.  Even last year, where Cam Newton was a runaway winner, there was some debate about the ethical aspect of the awarding to someone swirled in off-field controversy.

2. If there isn’t debate, it’s because someone is such a slam dunk winner we just celebrate how great they are.  There is no obvious guy and hasn’t been all year.

3.  There usually are favorites going into the year that carry the day.  Well, Andrew Luck and Trent Richardson were two of the favorites coming into the season, and both will be Heisman finalists, but neither has captured our minds or spirits.  They’ve underwhelmed.  They are there because they are there.

4.  There haven’t been any Heisman “moments” to speak of, unless you are riding the surging tidal wave of Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III and his comeback on Saturday night against Oklahoma.

5.  Look at the Home Depot Award Finalists lists below.  Even those awards can’t seem to come to the same conclusions on who the best players are.  Kellen Moore is a finalist for the Maxwell Award, but isn’t for best QB in the country?  CB Tyrann Mathieu is a finalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award, but not for the Thorpe Award as the best defensive back?

*- 2010 Award winner

Chuck Bednarik AwardCollege Defensive Player of the Year Dont’a Hightower, AlabamaTyrann Mathieu. LSU  

Devon Still, Penn State

Biletnikoff AwardNation’s Most Outstanding Receiver


Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State*Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma

Robert Woods, USC

Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker AwardNation’s Most Outstanding Placekicker


Randy Bullock, Texas A&M      Dustin Hopkins, Florida State
Caleb Sturgis, Florida                  
Ray Guy AwardNation’s Most Outstanding Punter


Ryan Allen, Louisiana TechSteven Clark, Auburn

Jackson Rice, Oregon

Maxwell AwardCollege Player of the Year


Andrew Luck, StanfordKellen Moore, Boise State

Trent Richardson, Alabama

Davey O’Brien National Quarterback AwardNation’s Best Quarterback


Robert Griffin III, BaylorCase Keenum, Houston

Andrew Luck, Stanford

Outland TrophyNation’s Most Outstanding

Interior Lineman

David DeCastro, StanfordBarrett Jones, Alabama

Devon Still, Penn State

Jim Thorpe AwardNation’s Most Outstanding

Defensive Back

David Amerson, NC StateMark Barron, Alabama

Morris Claiborne, LSU

Doak Walker AwardNation’s Most Outstanding

Running Back

Montee Ball, WisconsinLaMichael James, Oregon*

Trent Richardson, Alabama


6.  So many of these guys that are having great years, are doing it off the radar because of the school they play at or because their team has lost games.  Think about Wisconsin.  Two losses, nobody cares that Russell Wilson might break the all-time QB rating for a season or that Montee Ball already has broken the Big Ten TD record, and isn’t that far off of Barry Sanders all-time record of 39 in a regular season.  Or how about Colin Klein at Kansas State who is going to break the all-time record for rushing TD’s by a quarterback.

7.  There is no passion.  Talking heads will attempt to create some for the big name guys, but I could do a better job doing it for the guys I just mentioned who aren’t even getting a sniff despite having better seasons than the favorites.  I can’t tell you I have a favorite, because I don’t.  And I won’t have one even after the next two weeks.  It’s disappointing.  I have a feeling BCS will lead us to more disappointment though, so there is always that.