Well, I've neglected to Heisman Blog in a while. Damn.
Let's get back into the swing of things on this fine Friday, if we can.
- First up, Sports Illustrated compiled a list of its 10 best Heisman backs for 2005-
- Adrian Peterson, Oklahoma
- Reggie Bush, USC
- DeAngelo Williams, Memphis
- Michael Hart, Michigan
- Laurence Maroney, Minnesota
- Leon Washington, Florida State
- LenDale White, USC
- Gerald Riggs, Tennessee
- Michael Bush, Louisville
- Marshawn Lynch, California
Peterson and Bush are the most likely of the bunch to win the award, and in all likelihood are the front-runners. Both come from programs that are winning right now, and have won many Heismans, importantly at their positions. Don't think the Tailback-U mystique won't kick in for Bush?
We love all the candidates, they're all terrific backs in their own ways, but we have to cut through this list somehow. Gerald Riggs won't come close. Maroney won't unless he rips off 2,400 yards (a possibility, however slim). White has no chance, since he's his team's third-best Heisman option. Hart's going to end up losing carries this year to several teammates. DeAngelo Williams is in the same boat with Maroney, and comes from a program that can't win the Heisman.
Leon Washington plays at a school that has won collected two Heismans recently, but both were from quarterbacks and he'll also lose a lot of catches, carries and returns to teammate Lorenzo Booker, a flashier player. Michael Bush is a looooooong shot, but Louisville could be in the title game this year and 20-25 touchdowns and 1,500 yards should go a long way towards making his case if Louisville gets that far. Plus he's just an interesting water cooler kind of player, in that he's about 250 pounds and runs faster than most of the guys on this list.
The last player left is California's Marshawn Lynch. We're really high on this guy. Not so much as a Heisman candidate, but as a real star of the college game. Straying from the Heisman path for a moment, this is a guy who conceivably could run for well over 2,000 yards this season on a program that might contend for the championship in a few unlikely scenarios. Lost beneath the hype of recent California quarterbacks, the Bears have been a ridiculously balanced team that has utilized its rush attack in order to bludgeon foes. I believe Cal led the Pac-10 in rushing two years in a row and is primed to make the third time a charm. Lynch will no longer split carries, and will also be making plays as a receiver and returner. He has superstar written all over him, the guy is just so fast and elusive, yet physical and has a decent frame to handle the 20 plus carries he'll be burdened with this season.
Anyway, I foresee legitemate Heisman chances for only three of those ten backs---Bush, Peterson and Lynch. Running a distant fourth might be Laurence Maroney.
- Our only other Heisman thing to discuss this week is HeismanPundit's Top 10 Heisman winners list. Very interesting and well researched, as always with Heisman Pundit. I'll try and compile my own top recent Heisman winners list soon. If I'm smart, I'll make like HeismanPundit and list my criteria upfront so as not to confuse the reader, thus not falling victim to the trap of many college football writers/list whores who give readers lists and little else, leaving the confused peon to try and discern what the criteria was initially based on who was on the list. It should be the other way around.
9.Howard 'Hopalong' Cassady, Ohio State
8.Charlie Ward, Florida State
7.Doug Flutie, Boston College
6.Tony Dorsett, Pitt
5.Barry Sanders, Oklahoma State
4.Roger Staubach, Navy
3.Glenn Davis, Army
2.O.J. Simpson, USC
1.Doak Walker, SMU