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Unfortunately, I was not invited to cast a real ballot for this season’s Heisman Trophy, but that will not stop me from posting it here, for you, anyway. The award will be handed out Saturday night by the Downtown Athletic Club of New York City. Tim Tebow, junior quarterback of Florida looks to become only the second back-to-back winner in history, joining Ohio State running back Archie Griffin in 1974-5.
However, the competition making up the finalists is stiff: sophomore Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford and junior Texas signal caller Colt McCoy. My ballot would have been Sam Bradford, Tim Tebow, and Shonn Greene, junior Iowa running back. My reasons are below.
Bradford was the driving force behind the most prolific offense in NCAA history. He leads the nation in efficiency, with a big reason due to his 48-6 TD-INT ratio and 1.36% interception percentage. The 48 TDs led the nation and his 4,464 yards was third. While the Big 12 is not known for defense, leading a team to the conference championship and National Championship game and five consecutive games of 60+ points in the process is an unmatched achievement.
Tebow comes in just slightly below Bradford and is a tough case for me as he is probably the nation’s Most Valuable Player, however, the Heisman is for the Most Outstanding Player, more than a semantic difference. He is the consummate dual threat quarterback and was the nation’s fifth most efficient passer, had an astounding two interceptions, to go with his 28 TDs, or .75% interception rate. He scored 12 rushing touchdowns and ran up 564 yards, on only a 3.7 YPC average and took 15 sacks. He also had a better running game this season as he was only the third leading rusher on his team.
Greene was the only player in the country to have 100 yards in each game he played this season, especially impressive due to the Big 10’s good defenses. He was the key player in making the Hawkeyes as good as they were and leading them to a bowl. He was also instrumental in dashing Penn State’s national championship hopes. In a year dominated by quarterbacks, he was the country’s best rusher.
Colt McCoy, Junior, QB, Texas: He throws too many interceptions and takes too many sacks for a passer as efficient as he is, but he moves his offense down the field. He also scored ten times on the ground and was the Longhorns leading rusher. Not quite as good a passer as Bradford and not quite as good a dual threat as Tebow in a tough year for quarterbacks. Texas may have defeated Oklahoma, but Bradford still had a good game despite the loss.
Graham Harrell, Senior, QB, Texas Tech: Harrell put up sick numbers, but threw the ball more than any other quarterback this season. It also doesn’t hurt that he has Michael Crabtree to make plays with the football. A big detraction for him was that his team was whipped by Bardford’s and Harrell had a good game, but not one of his better, despite great numbers.