The Heisman race will be a hotly contested battle from the opening kickoff of the 2013 college football season. Johnny Manziel is in the running to repeat as the Heisman Trophy winner, but history says that he will have a tough time duplicating his record season. Manziel will have plenty of competition from his own conference in the SEC.
AJ McCarron and Aaron Murray are due to have strong seasons at the quarterback position for their respective teams. They also have very capable running backs to carry the load during any given Saturday. Todd Gurley is on his way to be a superstar for the Georgia Bulldogs.
Oregon has a pair of early season candidates with De’Anthony Thomas and Marcus Mariota. They are sure to pace the highly energetic Oregon offense.
A couple sleepers from non BCS schools are Cody Fajardo from Nevada and Jordan Lynch from Northern Illinois. Both quarterbacks feature a great passing game with incredible running ability.
Even two defenders made the short list for the early season Heisman candidacy. See who made the preseason Heisman list.
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In 2012 Cody Fajardo passed for over 2500 yards and rushed for more than 1100. Fajardo amassed 32 total touchdowns last year and is expected to have a huge year for the Nevada Wolf Pack. Thanks to Colin Kaepernick helping put the Nevada on the map, Fajardo should receive the right amount of press to help his Heisman hopes in the coming season.
Teddy Bridgewater’s draft stock has risen steadily since his Freshmen year. The overall schedule for Louisville is not tough so Bridgewater should put up very impressive numbers. Louisville will probably need to go undefeated.
De’Anthony Thomas was a popular choice last season for the Heisman Trophy. Lack of playing time due to blowouts and the emergence of Kenjon Barner in the backfield slowed down DAT’s production. Oregon still has a bunch of weapons to spread the ball around, but it looks like De’Anthony Thomas will be featured more often in the offense.
The Heisman Trophy is supposed to go to the best player and Jadeveon Clowney is certainly celebrated as one of College football’s best. As a defensive lineman, it will be extremely tough for Clowney to win the award, but we hope to see Clowney play on both sides of the ball. Maybe a little goal line offense to pad some touchdown numbers.
Johnny Manziel has been the most recognizable college football player in the last year. He garners more than enough attention on and off the field, and sometimes it can be a little much. We will know early on if the pressure of being the best will get to “Johnny Football.” His play making ability is some of the best on any level of football.
This would be a way more popular choice if Jordan Lynch and Northern Illinois performed better in the Orange Bowl. Still Lynch went for over 3000 yards passing and 1800 yards rushing. That type of production is hard to ignore.
This is the All purpose selection. Kain Colter plays quarterback, receiver and running back. He is a triple threat and is poised for an even bigger year than 2012. This season Colter may score in three different ways in one game.
Kevin Hogan is looking for some big accomplishments with the Stanford Cardinal. He hasn’t lost as a starter, and gives Stanford an added dimension with his mobility. Hogan will put up tremendous numbers this season
AJ McCarron has almost done everything in his college career and he will look to do more in his final season. What better way to go out than with a Heisman Trophy to add to his 2 national titles.
Kyle Van Noy
Kyle Van Noy is the leader of one of the best defenses in the country. Van Noy had over 10 sacks and his agility causes havoc for opposing offenses. With a special season, he can be in the running for some ballots. However, with Clowney in the hunt at South Carolina, it will be next to impossible to be a second defensive player in the top 5.
Marcus Mariota is another product of the Oregon system. Mariota has the ability to put up supreme numbers in his Sophomore year. For a legitimate shot at the Heisman, he will need to increase his rushing numbers and probably go undefeated. in 2012, Oregon had one loss.
Marqise Lee is the best receiver in college football and one of the few players that could have made an impact on the NFL draft as a Sophomore. Lee is a superstar that had 118 catches in 2012. USC needs to play better as a team to increase Marqise Lee’s Heisman chances.
The Clemson star is looking to take the Tigers to the National title. On the way, can Tajh Boyd pass for over 4000 yards in 2013? He will need the reemergence of Sammy Watkins in the receiving corps.
Taylor Martinez might be the fastest quarterback in college football. He has the capability of making big plays with his legs and unorthodox throwing style. If Martinez limits the turnovers in his Senior year, then awards might be in the foreseeable future.
Ameer Abdullah will be the full time starter for the Huskers in the backfield and he should combine with Martinez to make a lethal duo. As the head of the Nebraska running game, Abdullah can be a home run threat any time he touches the ball.
TJ Yeldon split duties in his Freshmen year a breezed past 1000 yards. There’s no doubt he will still share the carries, but Yeldon will be the lead running back on a stacked Alabama squad. TJ Yeldon has the best forward lean in college football and always seem gain yards after contact. Can we say 2000 yards?
Todd Gurley is a tough running back. He’s fast and can run by or through defenders. Gurley is agile enough to be a dangerous kick returner also. He will have to share time in the backfield on Saturday’s, but Todd Gurley will be the main attraction on Georgia.
Braxton Miller was overlooked in 2012 thanks to NCAA sanctions. Ohio State finished with an undefeated season and they are looking to build off of the momentum Urban Meyer started. Braxton Miller is one of the most explosive players in the game today.
Brett Hundley is ready to build UCLA into a power and he has the tools to get the job done. Hundley is a powerful quarterback and he’s able to make plays through the air and on the ground.
Aaron Murray has all of the offensive weapons any quarterback needs. Every season Murray has gotten better and he is looking to take Georgia to the top. If he improves on his numbers and leads Georgia to an undefeated season, Aaron Murray will be in the mix for the Heisman Trophy.